By naming William Murphy as the first Vice President for Communications, President Seligman took an important step toward improving UR’s public image.

Improving UR’s status in the public eye has countless benefits. The most noticeable impact is that graduates will have an easier time getting good jobs. If the university’s name is enhanced, graduates will be more readily associated with having received a high-quality education, which increases the chances of being hired for a top job.

In addition, the university will be able to attract even more high-caliber students. Pride in UR will be bolstered and morale will be increased across campus because of the school’s stronger reputation.

Any institution can hire talented public relations personnel to improve its image through aggressive campaigns – UR has an obvious advantage though. Increasing the visibility of UR’s divisions – The College, the Simon School, the Medical Center, the Eastman School of Music and the Warner School – under a single “brand” has, unfortunately, not been a top priority in recent years.

As a result, its reputation has fallen behind reality. With Murphy’s goal of streamlining the communication sent out by its various divisions of UR, our reputation will catch up with the high quality programming. The diverse course offerings of The College, the innovation at the Simon School, the cutting-edge Medical Center and the musical genius at the Eastman School of Music all deserve attention under the banner of a single university.

Murphy should look within the university for ideas and feedback about what his primary objectives should be. The students on campus know what Murphy should highlight and the faculty and staff know the types of students and future leaders he should be targeting.

Communication is a broad term that can make a huge difference in the connotation of a university. It is no secret to students and faculty that UR is a top tier institution. But with the addition of the position of Vice President for Communications, UR can step into the spotlight it so richly deserves.



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