Assistant Professor - Public Relations

Apply now Job no: 507748
Position type: Full-Time 9-Month
Department: 032700 - Communication
Location: Main Campus - Starkville, MS
Categories: Faculty
Position Open Date:

Position Function:

This is one full-time, 9-month, tenure-track faculty position requiring the successful candidate to teach, conduct research/creative work, and perform service. See below for more specifics.

Salary Grade:  UC

For salary grade UC, these positions are "Unclassified" and salary ranges are determined by the hiring department.

Department Profile:

The Department of Communication at Mississippi State University ( is one of the largest on campus. There are approximately 500 undergraduate majors across five concentrations: Broadcast & Digital Journalism, Communication & Media Studies, Print & Digital Journalism, Public Relations, and Theatre. Students may choose concentrations in more than one area, and minors are offered in each concentration.

The department also offers students a Master of Arts in Communication. Information on the graduate program is available at

The department is committed to fostering an environment that values and affirms diversity, equity, and inclusion. The department is committed to removing barriers that have been traditionally encountered by individuals from underrepresented groups and makes every attempt to support faculty members' academic, professional, and personal success. The department values diversity in experience, background and research perspectives and is dedicated to creating an inclusive environment for teaching and learning.

Students within the Department of Communication can take part in many different career advancement programs, such as internships and other student clubs and organizations like Alpha Psi Omega, Lambda Pi Eta, Speech & Debate Council, Lab Rats Comedy & Improv, Public Relations & Integrated Student Media (PRISM) agency, Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), Broadcast Education Association Student Media Club, Take 30 (Tv) News, The Reflector (newspaper), and via campus media partners: WMSV-FM, University Television, Digital Media Center, Hail State Productions (SEC Network/ESPN) and Geosciences (Meteorology).

Area of Specialization:

Public Relations

Anticipated Appointment Date:

August 16, 2025

Tenure Track Status:


Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

The Department of Communication at MSU seeks a tenure-track assistant professor who specializes in public relations. The successful candidate will primarily teach in the Public Relations concentration area, participate in scholarly activities relevant to the field, and be actively involved in service roles that contribute to furthering the reputation of the concentration, department, college, and university.

The successful candidate will teach undergraduate and graduate courses (in person and/or online). A sample of undergraduate courses that the successful candidate may be assigned to teach include, but is not limited to, Research in PR & Advertising, Digital and Social Media Analytics, PR in Organizations (Capstone Course), PR Multimedia, PR Case Problems, PR Writing, PR Production, Media Relations, Certificate in Principles of Public Relations (PRSA undergraduate PR certificate preparatory course), or other based on area of expertise. Graduate courses could include International Communication, Seminar in Crisis Communication, Managing Messages & Media Relations, Seminar in Communication Research, Seminar in Communication and Leadership, Seminar in Media, Case Study Research, or other based on area of expertise.

A typical course load for an assistant professor with an active research agenda is three undergraduate courses per semester. If teaching graduate courses, the workload is 3/2, reduced during the semester teaching at the graduate level. During the first two years of employment, an additional course equivalent reassignment per semester for tenure-track positions may be granted (for an overall 2-2 load), thus encouraging the individual to initiate or continue a strong research/creative program.

Research is defined by the university, college, and department in a broad context. Excellence in research or creative achievement must be established by critical peer evaluation, using standards prevailing in the discipline. More information on promotion and tenure is available in the faculty handbook which can be found at

Service includes advising majors and student organizations, developing curriculum, and serving on committees. Service activities within the community, academic and professional disciplines are also recognized as aspects of faculty achievement.

Minimum Qualifications:

For tenure-track positions, the appropriate terminal degree and a strong record of or potential for successful teaching and scholarly research and/or creative work are required. Highly qualified ABDs will be considered, but a communication-related terminal degree must be completed within one year of the appointment date.

Preferred Qualifications:

The ideal candidate will have a PhD in a communication field, a strong record of scholarly research and/or creative work, and collegiate teaching experience. Specifically, the ideal candidate would have experience teaching public relations courses with some public relations professional practice. Current active involvement with PR professional organizations, such as PRSA/PRSSA, experience working with a student-led media agency, or obtaining the APR credential is also preferred.

The ideal candidate would be familiar with or have some experience with current technology and trends commonly used in the field, such as Adobe products (e.g., Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop, Lightroom, Premiere, Express, Rush, Audition, Dreamweaver), social and digital media planning, tracking, and reporting analytics programs (e.g., Meltwater, Sprout, Cision, Google Analytics), podcasting, photography, and/or videography.

Candidates who have experience in, or the potential for building an enriched, equitable, and diverse scholarly environment are strongly encouraged to apply. A demonstrated commitment to working with students of all backgrounds and with students holding a range of worldviews is valued.

Candidates who have experience in, or the potential for building an enriched, equitable, and diverse scholarly environment are strongly encouraged to apply. A demonstrated commitment to work with students of all backgrounds and with students holding a range of worldviews is valued.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

The successful candidate must have a thorough knowledge of the field and a willingness to participate collegially in a broad department. Colleagues must be able to communicate that knowledge to students as well as to other important groups through scholarship and service. See above for overall duties and responsibilities.

Working Conditions and Physical Effort

The successful candidate must be able to teach in a classroom setting, conduct research and/or creative work, and provide service in the profession.

Instructions for Applying:

All applicants must apply online at and attach (1) a cover letter (1–2-page letter of application summarizing teaching experience and performance, current scholarship/professional agenda, personal contribution to an enriched diverse environment, and a 5-year career plan), (2) current resume or curriculum vitae, (3) contact information for at least three professional references. Review of applications will begin Sept. 16, 2024, and continue until the position is filled.

Questions regarding the position are welcome and can be directed to Dr. Melody Fisher, Search Committee Chair, at

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement:

MSU is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, ethnicity, sex, religion, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, pregnancy, gender identity, status as a U.S. veteran, and/or any other status protected by applicable law. We always welcome nominations and applications from women, members of any minority group, and others who share our passion for building a diverse community that reflects the diversity in our student population.

What do I do if I need an accommodation?

In compliance with the ADA Amendments Act (ADA), if you have a disability and would like to request an accommodation in order to apply for a position with Mississippi State University, please contact the Department of Human Resources Management at tel: (662) 325-3713 or

If you have any questions regarding this policy, contact the Department of Human Resources Management at (662) 325-3713 or Upon request, sections of this job listing are available in large print, and readers are available to assist the visually impaired.

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