Communications & Marketing

Media Policy

The USF Sarasota-Manatee Office of University Communications & Marketing works closely with reporters, editors, and producers to provide them with newsworthy and timely information about the university.

If you have a good story idea about a program or person that you would like to see publicized on the USF Sarasota-Manatee website or in the news media, please work with UCM to coordinate coverage, or submit your idea or suggestion using the News Story Idea request form. Please keep in mind that pitches designed to interest the news media should have a measure of broad appeal to the media outlet's readers or viewers. Story pitches with a human interest angle, centering on breakthrough research of particular interest to local, regional or national media and focused on unique and newsworthy events have the best chance of attracting media interest.

University of South Florida employees are encouraged to respond to routine requests for factual information by identified news representatives where the requested information is within the employee's area of responsibility and release of the information is timely and appropriate.

In those cases where an employee is asked to comment as a representative of the University of South Florida or of the USF Sarasota-Manatee campus on an official USF or USF Sarasota-Manatee policy or position on an issue, prior approval should be received from the USF Sarasota-Manatee Office of University Communications & Marketing.

UCM also is available to help coordinate media requests to speak with faculty and staff. Please direct the reporter to Shawn Ahearn (941-359-4219 | to coordinate the request. We want to accommodate the media as best we can in a prompt and professional manner.

All official news and information communicated to the news media by USF Sarasota-Manatee as "official" news releases, statements, tips, and reports, shall be initiated and approved in advance by the USF Sarasota-Manatee Office of University Communications & Marketing.

News and information pertaining to the internal programs of a department, school, college, division, or campus that do not violate the definition and spirit of "official" University news and information may be communicated to the news media by the unit itself. Copies should be provided to the USF Sarasota-Manatee Office of University Communications & Marketing at the same time such information is provided to the news media.

The UCM team pitches story ideas and disseminates information to assignment editors and reporters using the following tools:

  • The Bulls Notebook newsletter sent to media representatives, staff and faculty each week during the school year.
  • Press releases to the news media.
  • The USF Sarasota-Manatee web site.
  • Social media feeds, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.
  • Personal contact via phone or email.