If a member of the media contacts you or your department, contact the Office of Public Affairs right away. It is important to respond quickly, because most reporters are on deadline. Remember, it is perfectly acceptable to tell a reporter that you can call him/her back. Get the reporter’s news organization, name, phone, cell phone, email and deadline, and contact Manny Romero, Executive Director of Public Affairs, at (212) 220-1238 or email@example.com. You can also contact the Office of Public Affairs at (212) 346-8501.
The Office of Public Affairs works closely with the media and can guide interviewees to effectively present their message points and work with journalists in all forms of media (print, radio, television and online). These guidelines are not intended to restrict BMCC employees from expressing their own opinions, but in doing so, they are advised to state that their viewpoints are personal and do not necessarily reflect those of their colleagues, BMCC or the City University of New York.
In addition to providing support to members of the BMCC community who are contacted by the media, the Office of Public Affairs can extend the news coverage and promote the interview to internal and external audiences.
- Get the reporter’s details: name, organization, deadline, anticipated date/time of print or broadcast, and above all, contact information (office phone, cell phone, and email).
- Buy time: Do not feel pressured to respond to a press inquiry instantly. It is standard practice to call the reporter back. The extra time will provide you the opportunity to think through your response or contact the Office of Public Affairs for advice.
- Stay within your expertise: If you cannot answer a question or feel uncomfortable, take the reporter’s information and contact the Office of Public Affairs. We can search for an appropriate BMCC Expert, if necessary.
- Ask about the subject matter: Ask what questions the reporter needs answered and find out what the focus of the news report will be.
- Think fast, talk slow: Reporters favor quick replies. Be prompt, helpful and honest but think through responses. News media often are on deadlines. If you cannot get back to the reporter, ask the Office of Public Affairs to assist you.
- Do not discuss topics like college/university policy, legal matters, pending litigation, crises or emergencies, and college personnel and students. Refer these media requests to the Office of Public Affairs.