Media Relations

Stetson's experienced and dedicated news team is responsible for sharing Stetson's newsworthy activities and research with a wider audience, including the media. We assist journalists with articles by arranging interviews with staff and faculty, and providing background information, photos or information about Stetson. 

Share Your Expertise

Media frequently call us looking for an expert to comment on their story. If you would like to be included in the list of subject matter experts that we call on when media reach out to us, please get in touch.

Share Your Research

If you want to work with Media Relations to share either ongoing research or significant publications through a news release, social media, direct pitches to journalists or other, please get in touch with us so we can decide how best to proceed.

The impact on your time will depend on how Media Relations decides to share the information. It's always best to allow a couple of weeks' notice before any major publication. Typically, we start with a short conversation and the written summary of your research. We may go through a few drafts of a news release which can take a week or more. Other ways of sharing research usually take less time.

If you need media training, you will need to start earlier.

Media Training

If you are committed to becoming a subject matter expert for media (or if you just want to have a conversation about the possibility), please contact Cory Lancaster at [email protected], 386-822-7214. Media Training can be scheduled for small groups or individuals on an as-needed basis.

Working with the Media

Media Timelines and Working Conditions

  • Media work on very tight deadlines. Please get back to them as quickly as possible. Journalists can be assigned a news story at 10 a.m. and be expected to file it by noon. If you aren't able to do the interview within the time they specify, tell them when you will be free to talk and they may be able to adjust.
  • Often a single journalist will produce web, television and print or radio stories, and they may be interviewing multiple people, so there could be a lag between your interview and when the story goes live.
  • When you share your interview on social media, mention the journalist/outlet to show your appreciation for their work.

Preparing for an Interview

  • If you need time to collect your thoughts before responding to a journalist's questions, feel free to tell them that you will call them back within a specified, short time (5-10 minutes).
  • Focus on three key points that you want to get across in the interview. Too many messages will be harder to remember and you may not have time to fit them all in.
  • Use short, compelling sentences to communicate your points. Finding a simple anecdote or metaphor that most people can relate to will help to illustrate what you mean. "Stetson's carbon reduction over the past two years is equal to taking 2,000 cars off the road for five years."
  • If discussing your research, try not to use too many statistics in recorded comments because they are hard to follow. Limit yourself to one statistic per 10-second sound bite.
  • Anticipate questions that might arise and prepare potential answers and ideas ahead of time. Don't rehearse answers word for word, just be ready to express your ideas succinctly and thoughtfully.
  • Avoid jargon, which takes time to explain. Instead, choose language that will be easily understood by a general audience.
  • For television, wear comfortable clothes without busy patterns and a minimum of jewelry or anything else that might distract the viewer's eye.

During the Interview

  • Never speak off the record and assume that everything you say from the moment you enter the building (or answer the phone, or shake hands) could be quoted.
  • Correct the record, politely, if the reporter has inaccurate information. You both will be happy you did.
  • Speak in conversational terms, be brief and non-technical. Keep in mind that 10-second sound bites are great for TV and social media.
  • State important facts first and remember your key points. Your time is limited so be sure to get your points across.
  • Use short anecdotes or metaphors to illustrate your ideas.
  • If you don't know something, say so in a friendly way.
  • Don't stray from your area of expertise even if the reporter encourages you to do so.