Education Equity Communications Director
Vietnamese American Young Leaders Association of New OrleansCategory: Miscellaneous
Location: New Orleans
Salary: $35,000-42,000 DOE
Duration of Position: 1-year
Work Schedule: Full Time
Position Summary: The Vietnamese American Young Leaders Association of New Orleans (VAYLA-NO) is seeking a Communications Coordinator for the Raise Your Hand Campaign. This person will work closely with grassroots youth leaders on developing overall communications strategies to win education equity issue campaigns and amplify youth voices in education governance and policymaking. The Communications Director will support student organizers to develop public speeches, prepare for media contact, and plan for meetings with officials. Additionally, this person will train and support youth organizers in citizen journalism and participatory documentation projects raise public consciousness about educational injustices and shape discourse at both the community and policy levels. As the head of communications strategy, this person will also be responsible for supervising two media coordinators, managing the program’s website content, and building the program’s social media presence. Applicants are expected to have strong inter-personal skills, superior written and communication skills, experience in journalism or communications, familiarity with education policy issues, and experience working with low-income youth of color in a youth organizing social justice context.
Organization and Program Description: VAYLA-NO formed in 2006 when the Versailles community of New Orleans East mobilized to protest the opening of a toxic landfill less than a mile from their neighborhood. Over the years, VAYLA has expanded into a multi-issue organization, adding education equity, health access, and civic engagement to its portfolio of youth organizing work. VAYLA-NO works to challenge institutional forms of oppression by developing youth of color as agents of social change, and by supporting multi-racial, youth-led issue campaigns to improve the environmental and educational conditions plaguing their communities. Alongside this strong organizing focus, VAYLA is committed to offering cultural, recreational and educational services. Particularly in a city where youth have faced both natural and man-made disasters, VAYLA has adopted a multi-pronged program that addresses the immediate social, emotional and academic needs of low-income youth of color while simultaneously empowering them to mount institutional challenges and fight for social justice.
The Raise Your Hand Campaign (RYHC), VAYLA’s education equity program, began in May 2010 when Vietnamese, African American, and Latino youth came together to reflect on the deplorable conditions they experience every day in New Orleans public schools. Grounded in youth-led participatory research, the Raise Your Hand Campaign program incubates and supports issue campaigns that seek to dismantle educational barriers for the city’s most vulnerable students. The program equips youth people with the tools to document educational inequalities, produce knowledge on prevailing schooling conditions, and build the social and political capital necessary to advance more equitable school and district policies. Through their organizing and advocacy efforts, youth leaders develop core competencies in critical thinking, applied research methods, public speaking, leadership, media design, and strategic communication.
• Train youth and community leaders in communications concepts, strategies, methods, and skills relevant to community organizing and policy advocacy within the arena of education reform.
• Work with staff and community leaders in the development and implementation of communications strategies that strengthen the impact of bottom-up organizing efforts.
• Train and support youth in citizen journalism and media projects related to education equity issues.
• Train and support youth and staff in the development of public speeches and taking points.
• Supervise our film and media staff to optimize product messaging and ensure alignment of media and art-based projects with overall campaign communications strategies.
• Draft press releases for campaign events and actions, and developing these skills within our youth and community leaders.
• Develop and manage media contact lists, and developing relationships with key education reporters and media outlets.
• Spearhead media outreach activities for all major events and actions.
• Work with media contacts to develop stories about our education campaigns and the injustices our communities are facing in the schools.
• Develop and manage our website content, particularly media and updates related to our education campaigns
• Produce program marketing and outreach materials that target the broader community, including brochures, fact sheets, quarterly newsletters, etc.
• Partner with other community-based organizations to develop an online platform that features bottom-up youth journalism and media related to education equity issues.
• At least two years of experience working in journalism or communications in a social justice or advocacy organization.
• Experience training community members at the grassroots level in media, communications or citizen journalism.
• Substantial connections to media outlets, reporters, and journalists, and ability to leverage media connections to increase access for our youth organizers and community members.
• Excellent individual and group communication skills (written and verbal); finesse in applying these skills across a range of relationships and environments, including with program participants, co-workers, education officials, and the media.
• Ability to produce excellent writing (press releases, public statements, etc.) for a diverse array of audiences under pressure and often with short notice.
• Understanding and analysis of the systemic nature of oppression, particularly the intersection of gender, race, sexuality, and class; this position requires a commitment to and passion for social, economic and racial justice.
• Excellent interpersonal skills, and a desire to work with low-income youth of color.
• Ability to handle a variety of projects and assignments at once.
• Excellent time management and project management skills.
• Ability to work with underserved youth and to empower their voices.
• Desire for and comfort with young people taking the lead; the candidate must be able to motivate youth and support youth self-determination while also creating and enforcing systems of accountability.
• Familiarity with the New Orleans public school system and local government preferred.
• Experience working in underserved communities of color preferred.
• Experience managing website content with wordpress preferred.
How To Apply:
To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and at least two relevant writing samples (press releases, news articles, etc.) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Deadline To Apply: Oct. 15, 2012
Phone: (504) 253-6000
Posted: 09/23/2012 - 07:51 p.m.
Modified: 09/23/2012 - 09:11 p.m.
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