The Catholic University of America

Press Releases Policy

Archived 6/9/17

I.   Introduction

This policy is intended to define the approved channels and process for delivering information, news and publicity materials to the media.

University communications with the news media are managed by The CUA Office of Public Affairs (PBAF), which serves as a liaison between the University and the public and is responsible for a broad range of editorial, marketing, publications and other public relations functions, including the creation and distribution of news releases about campus events, research, grants, awards and other milestones. News releases are a key communication tool used by PBAF media relations staff to promote CUA and raise the University's profile on a local, national and international level. For more information about on- and off-campus publicity tools or to receive a copy of Publicity Guidelines, contact the Office of Public Affairs at tel. (202) 319-5600.

II.   Definitions

News releases (also called press releases) can include:

A. "Narrative style" news releases designed to solicit coverage from the news media or trade publications;


B. Web releases, or Web-only versions of narrative style news releases, which are intended to inform the CUA community and general public via content posted to the headline section of the main CUA Web site (;


C. Calendar item notices about events which can be submitted to free listings in local


D. Media advisories or boosters which can be sent as a follow-up to other news releases or as stand-alone vehicles intended to convey critical information about an event shortly before it takes place;


E. Photo advisories which are designed to convey logistical information regarding news photo information to still and video photographers.


III.   General Policies


       A.  The Office of Public Affairs is the only office on campus permitted to send out news releases on behalf of the University and its administrative and academic units. By channeling the release of information to the media through the Office of Public Affairs, the University is able to maintain a professional, journalistic communication style in news releases and ensure a review policy that allows for a consistent, appropriate public image for Catholic University. Having a single distribution point for news releases also gives communications staff the opportunity to integrate key marketing information into the University's media messages. 

       B.  The Office of Public Affairs creates and distributes news releases at the discretion of communications staff and the associate vice president for public affairs. After receiving a request to produce a release, PBAF staff will assess the subject of the release and determine how toproceed based on whether or not the release subject is:

a) in keeping with the University's mission;
b) is "newsworthy" enough to appeal to the news media or other intended audiences; 
c) will produce the desired results; and 
d) will help meet University communications and marketing goals.

PBAF reserves the right to decline the creation/distribution of news releases if they are deemed
inconsistent with any part of this or any other University policy.

        C.  Student Organizations: The Office of Public Affairs does not write or distribute news releases on behalf of student organizations. Some exceptions may be made for University-sponsored events and at the discretion of the associate vice president for public affairs. PBAF staff will, as staff time allows, provide student organizations with sample news releases, media contact information and other resources that may be helpful to students working to promote their organization's events.