A shot of the Peace Bridge over the Bow River

Media Support

Get the edge on your story. The Faculty of Science is home to subject matter experts who are scholars in disciplines from the microscopic to the massive.

For media related inquiries, please contact Owen Stockden (Director of Marketing and Communications) at owen.stockden@ucalgary.ca or Colette Derworiz (Senior External Communications Advisor) at colette.derworiz@ucalgary.ca.

Our faculty’s mandate is to provide students with the highest quality education, research, and service possible to meet the growing requirements of society, industry, and the professions.

Our high commitment to quality teaching is complemented by our vision to be an international research leader in selected areas of science – all of which help to develop leaders of tomorrow that are capable of adapting to an ever-changing world.

By working with our researchers, faculty, staff, and students, we aim to share with members of the media content that informs and educates our local, national, and international audiences.

The media relations team at the Faculty of Science reaches local, national, and international audiences to publicize research breakthroughs and pitch unique stories.

Our team works with faculty, staff, researchers, and students to promote the Faculty of Science through the media. We inform and educate the public by distributing news releases, writing stories for our website, hosting events, and responding to media inquiries, many of which include requests for expert commentary on daily news events. We work and build relationships with journalists through our daily interactions. A significant part of the Faculty’s profile comes from expert commentary on daily events.

The Faculty of Science media relations team can:

  • Advise faculty members on any media relations question, including planning an event, pitching a story, and providing tips for interviews
  • Develop a media plan
  • Pitch stories to the media
  • Prepare written materials for release to the media (backgrounds, Q&A, Media Kit)
  • Write for the web (UToday, University of Calgary, Faculty of Science websites)
  • Respond to media calls and coordinate interviews
  • Provide media training and tips
  • Advise on social media opportunities
  • Produce Public Service Announcements (PSAs) when appropriate

Guidelines and Approval 
When a researcher approaches our team with a study opportunity requiring media support, or when we find out from a journal that one of our researchers will be featured in a publication, we have an approval process prior to starting a communications plan.

For a research finding to be newsworthy and credible, it must represent either a fundamental basic science finding of outstanding or unusual interest, published in a high impact journal OR a outcome/understanding of great interest, published in a well-recognized or high impact journal.

Our team sends all studies, with written papers, to the relevant department heads and institute directors to evaluate the media potential of the story. Stories are evaluated on the basis of their timeliness, broad interest to a non-scientific audience, and for reading impact.

Timeline and Process 
When a research story fulfills the criteria outlined above, the next steps are:

  • Researcher provides a summary of the research findings
  • Media team schedules a half hour meeting with the researcher in order to fully comprehend the research findings and ask follow up questions
  • Media team drafts a story
  • Approval by the researcher of the written news release
  • Minimum two to three-hour window for a media availability, when the researcher is available to be interviewed