News Guidelines and Services
MSU-Northern will include news briefs on new faculty and staff hires in the Northern Network News, post them on our website and distribute them to appropriate Montana newspapers.
These briefs can also be published on departmental and/or college web sites and in departmental and/or college newsletters. They also may be used in other college-based communications. It is up to each college or department to publish them on their website or insert them into their newsletters.
The briefs should be one paragraph in length and include such details as the person's name, title, department and/or college, general duties and previous position.
Media announcements of administrative appointments at a dean's level or higher are generally longer than a brief and are often written by University Relations staff and distributed to relevant news media.
Retirements, even of long-time faculty or staff, generally are handled as news brief items through the Northern Network News. The briefs should include the person's name, title, department and/or college, years in the position and general duties/accomplishments while in the position. Length shouldn't exceed one paragraph.
The University Relations Office works closely with Human Resources Office and the Chancellors to advertise the annual retirement reception usually help in late April.
The University Relations office will help distribute brief descriptions of new grants through the Northern Network News and website. New grant announcements, should be roughly 100 words in length, should include such information as the name of the faculty/staff member involved, the amount of the grant, its duration, the sponsor and the purpose of the project.
In general, the University Relations Office handles faculty and staff awards as described above and encourages the preparation of such brief items through the college or department involved. The exceptions include announcements of honorary doctorates and nationally or internationally prominent honors, which are often longer in length and distributed all of the newspapers in Montana.
University Relations office works with the Registrar's Office, Dean of Students Office, and the Northern Alumni Foundation to prepare and distribute the Dean's List (twice a year), Student Excellence Awards, graduation lists (twice a year), Founders Excellence Awards, and the Athletic Hall of Fame inductees.
Hometowns are brief summaries (one paragraph) of student accomplishments or awards sent directly to students' hometown newspapers (usually weekly newspapers). Hometowns are not feature-length articles and are usually prepared and submitted by the appropriate college or department who is familiar with the details of the student's accomplishment.
When preparing hometown briefs, please keep in mind the following guidelines:
- Hometown releases are for student honors such as awards, fellowships, scholarships ($1,000 and above) and related accomplishments.
- Hometown news briefs are for the academic year and should be distributed within one month of the award and no later than June 30.
- University Relations maintains a database of all mainstream Montana newspapers. If you want your Hometown brief sent to a media sources outside Montana you will need to provide a current email address for those outlets.
- Hometown information should be submitted in a Word document.
The Office of University Relations recognizes the valuable contributions of donors to the growth and vitality of MSU-Northern and to the education of its students. University Relations works in partnership with the Northern Alumni Foundation in acknowledging donations in the media when appropriate.
In general, donations (and sponsorships) to the university can be recognized in the following ways:
- A brief (one paragraph) summary of the donation in the Northern Network News
- A posting on the Northern Alumni Foundation Web site
- A listing in the Northern Alumni Foundation's annual Donor Honor Roll
On occasion, the University Relations Office will prepare and distribute press releases on donations in situations in which the gift is unique in some way—either in amount ($200,000 or more), origin or purpose—as determined by the Northern Alumni Foundation or the Chancellor.
Newspaper editors have asked us to be judicious in the number of donation acknowledgements we submit. What's more, the donor must agree to make the amount of the donation public before a press release can be considered.
The need for press conferences is infrequent in a town with a press corps as small as Havre's.
However, when appropriate, the Office of University Relations may contact all local media for briefings, but only if the topic has university-wide, community-wide or state-wide impact. Such briefings must be recommended and approved by the Director of University Relations and the Chancellor of MSU-Northern.
In general, local media are alerted to briefings or press opportunities through a Media Advisory issued by the Office of University Relations.