Within the University of North Carolina at Wilmington is a department which offers a full range of services for providing optimal communication and promotion of news and events regarding the university. The UNCW Marketing and Communications (MaC) department works to enhance the image of the university and to increase its position among other higher education marketplaces by managing marketing, communication, public relations, media relations, community relations, and advertising strategies. MaC also seeks to preserve the integrity of UNCW and its reputation for excellence through a variety of services such as crisis communication, event promotions, issues management, and marketing and research strategies. Furthermore, MaC takes charge of the management of corporate events and marketing communication activities, which is done in order to build strong relationships with key institutional stakeholders who are vital to the continued success of the university.
Although many crisis situations potentially occur without warning, many situations can be anticipated or mitigated before they get out of hand. This is where MaC comes in. MaC helps facilitate and maintain an extensive and effective system of communication during a period when the university may be in a crisis due to a campus emergency or circumstances that threaten to integrity of the institution. In the event that an emergency occurs such as a major tropical storm, hurricane, fire or some other campus or regional emergency, MaC is responsible for communicating with the faculty, staff, students, visitors, and external audiences in the community. The Seahawk Siren System, the UNCW Emergency Information Hotline, the UNCW Alert Website, as well as mass text messages and e-mails, are all efficient forms of notifying people if there is an emergency on campus.
Corporate communication is the foundation of UNCW’s success as a university, just as with any successful business. When dealing with crisis on campus it is important that it is effectively and positively handled through the marketing and communications department, but it also is important that the students and faculty are in the know and able to efficiently deal with the crisis. Students and faculty may be the image of this university, but a great deal of work is accomplished by other staff members, who are vital its success. The university has very similar responsibilities and obligations to their students as a corporation does to their employees. Each must create a strong public appearance in order to draw students/employees, and must provide a favorable work environment in order to keep them from leaving for another, more desirable, school or company. Furthermore, within the system of higher education, UNCW must compete with other colleges and universities if they wish to be successful, thus it is just as important to foster a strong corporate bearing which will maximize opportunities for funding and university advancement.
– Arielle, Danielle, Haley and Lora