Public Affairs Specialist
Work Schedule: 8:00 am to 4:30 pm
Position Description Title/PD#: Public Affairs Specialist #6569
The incumbent provides the full spectrum of public affairs support for the VAMC, to include serving as the primary writer-editor for the facility, managing internal information to employees, media relations and community relations/outreach programs. He/she serves as a point of contact for media; Veteran's service organizations, congressional staffs, community groups, professional organizations, etc. He/she conducts the public affairs program with responsibility for developing and providing staff direction involving all public information, internal communications, VSO liaison and community relations activities. He/she often represents the VAMC Executive Leadership, participating at public, civic, or social events to improve perception of the VAMC as a valued part of the medical profession, government and community.
- Manages the My Life, My Story program, to include recruiting Veterans on inpatient units to participate, conducting and recording interviews, writing 800-1000 word narrative based on interview, and editing stories submitted by program volunteers.
- Writes/edits articles highlighting facility accomplishments to include Research-based findings and/or studies, annual report, newsletter, speeches, presentations as well as print, broadcast and electronic media, drafts copy that targets unique audiences, follows AP style and fact checks final content for accuracy.
- Advises the VAMC Executive Leadership regarding media relations issues.
- Responds to, or prepare responses to queries as appropriate. Coordinates responses to sensitive issues with the Durham VAMC Public Affairs Officer.
- Establishes and maintains professional working relationships with local news media, ensuring responses to media queries are accomplished in a timely and factual fashion.
- Analyzes VAMC communication needs, tailoring specific communication strategies to reach target audiences using all appropriate communication tools.
- Prepares and distributes information to educate and inform local audiences about VA health care programs and policies. Localizes material supplied by VHA for release to area media. Coordinates with Durham VAMC Public Affairs Officer and the VISN communications office to develop unified action on news stories as appropriate.
- Develops and uses a variety of methods and techniques in achieving communication goals, such as news releases, radio and television scripts, personal appearances, social media, web platforms, brochures, pamphlets, etc.
- Evaluates the effectiveness and efficiency of the media relations program.
- Acts as backup to the Durham VAMC Public Affairs Officer as needed.
To qualify for this position, applicants must meet all requirements by the closing date of this announcement
A Selective Placement Factor is used to rate applications for this announcement. The required experience must be documented in your resume. Applicants who do not meet the Selective Placement Factor will be rated as not qualified for the announcement.
Selective Placement Factor: Do you have one year copyediting experience in a medical field with three years' experience in a health care setting?
Preferred Qualifications: 5+ years' experience in writing-editing
Specialized Experience: Conduct a public affairs program involving public information, internal information, and community relations activities for internal and external audiences.
Applicants must have One year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the next lower grade (GS-09) in the normal line of progression for the occupation in the organization. Examples of specialized experience would typically include, but are not limited to: Public relations programs management in health care environment; design of marketing and advertising materials programs and campaigns.
OR Education Substitution: Successful completion of a Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree; or 3 full years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to such a degree; or LL.M., if related. OR Combination of education and experience: An equivalent combination of specialized experience and education as described for the GS-11 that demonstrates your ability to perform the duties of this position. Applicants may also combine education and experience to qualify. To calculate, first identify the percentage of required education you have earned (when substituting, you cannot use the first 60 semester hours that you earned). Then identify the percentage of required experience you possess. Add the two percentages. The total percentage must equal at least 100 percent to qualify at the GS-11. For example, an applicant who has 9 semester hours of graduate level education (i.e. 50% of graduate education required) and 6 months of creditable specialized experience (i.e. 50% of the required experience) would equal 100% of the required experience for the position
A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education.
Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religions; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.
Note: Only education or degrees recognized by the U.S. Department of Education from accredited colleges, universities, schools, or institutions may be used to qualify for Federal employment. You can verify your education here: http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/. If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education.
Physical Requirements: This position is sedentary.
Time-in-grade: Applicants who are current Federal employees and have held a GS grade any time in the past 52 weeks must also meet time-in-grade requirements. For a GS11 position you must have served 52 weeks at the GS-09 level.
VA offers a comprehensive benefits package. This link provides an overview of the benefits currently offered: http://www.vacareers.va.gov/why-choose-va/benefits/index.asp. VA supports the use of telework as a way to help attract and retain talented individuals in public service, increase worker productivity, and better prepare the agency to operate during emergencies. This position may be authorized for telework. Telework eligibility will be discussed during the interview process.
The Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP) and Career Transition Assistance Plan CTAP) provide eligible displaced Federal competitive service employees with selection priority over other candidates for competitive service vacancies. To be qualified you must submit appropriate documentation and be found well-qualified (have a final rating of 85 or more before any Veterans preference points) for this vacancy. Information about ICTAP and CTAP eligibility is on OPM's Career Transition Resources website.
Receiving Service Credit for Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave : Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employee's credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave. Such credit must be requested and approved prior to the appointment date and is not guaranteed.
Placement Policy: The posting of this announcement does not obligate management to fill a vacancy or vacancies by promotion. The position may be filled by reassignment, change to lower grade, transfer, appointment, or reinstatement. Management may use any one or any combination of these methods to fill the position.
It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.
This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.