Higher Education Reporter

McClatchy   Raleigh, NC   Full-time     Writing / Editing
Posted on September 7, 2022
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The (Raleigh) News & Observer and The (Durham) Herald-Sun in North Carolina are looking for a smart, energetic, experienced higher education reporter to cover a region with some of the highest-profile universities in the country. 

The area is home to the University of North Carolina, N.C. State and Duke University. Known for its diverse population, the area also is home to N.C. Central University and several other HBCUs.

This reporting position is a top priority in our newsroom, with many opportunities to write high-impact stories, widely distributed daily stories and meaningful investigative and enterprise projects.

Candidates must have a college degree, preferably in journalism or communications. Two years of experience covering education is preferred; a previous newsroom internship covering education is a plus.

The Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill region is among the fastest growing metropolitan areas in the nation. Known as the Triangle, the area is home to state government and numerous corporate headquarters and fast-growing startups. Our journalists work in communities with vibrant choices for foodies, arts and music lovers, and outdoors enthusiasts.

The ideal candidate’s key attributes include:

  • Strict ethics and dedication to high-quality journalism

  • Ability to organize and prioritize work

  • Fast and accurate

  • Excellent self-editing skills

  • Comfortable working with data

  • Keen instincts in identifying and pursuing stories that will resonate with readers

  • A competitive spirit and drive to get stories first

  • Solid understanding of audience engagement, metrics and SEO

  • Experience using social media both as a reporting and an engagement tool

  • A collaborative personality and a track record of working well with editors as well as working independently

  • True curiosity about the topics covered in this position

  • Experience building sources

  • An aptitude to learn technical skills inside the newsroom such as content management systems and other tools

Key duties include:

  • Finding, prioritizing and writing the most significant and interesting higher education stories of the day, ahead of the competition

  • Working with data to identify trends

  • Obtaining public records and, when needed, filing public records requests expertly and efficiently

  • Shooting photos and videos as needed

  • Distributing work through social media platforms

  • Supplying SEO keywords, headlines and other strategies to boost distribution of each story

  • Contributing regularly to a variety of audience-based newsletters

  • Meeting audience and reporting goals

  • Must have reliable transportation.  Must have valid driver’s license and vehicle insurance required (at least minimum insurance required for the state in which the employee works)

We’re moving quickly to fill this important position. Deadline for applications is Oct. 1, 2022. Resume and cover letter required. Applications without cover letters will not be considered.