October 22, 2014  

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For the Media

Main Content

Southern Miss Media Policies

At Southern Miss, we know your job as a journalist is important. We believe that as a member of the news media you are an important link in providing information to the public about a variety of relevant issues, including stories for and about the University community. The Office of University Communications has built, and continues to build, positive relationships with local and national journalists.

Southern Miss has a history of sharing the expertise of our premiere faculty and highly trained staff beyond the boundaries of our various campuses. We regularly provide the media with news tips, sources, story ideas and information about upcoming events. Our team is here to assist you in arranging campus visits, interviews and photo/video opportunities. We make every effort to make your dealings with Southern Miss as efficient and productive as possible. However, we do have a few guidelines that will allow us to serve you better.

Why We Have Guidelines

The Southern Miss Office of University Communications has these media guidelines in place first and foremost to protect the privacy rights of our students, faculty and staff. We also have these guidelines to provide the most helpful information in the most orderly manner to all working journalists. Additionally, these guidelines are meant to provide a safe environment in case of an emergency, natural disaster, or other crisis.

Media Credentials

The Office of University Communications issues media credentials annually to working journalists representing bona fide news organizations. Credentials must be worn at all times while on the various Southern Miss campuses. Such credentials must be renewed annually, each August, at the beginning of the new school calendar. All media credentials remain the property of the University of Southern Mississippi and may be suspended or revoked as deemed necessary. Without credentials, journalists are prohibited from working on the Southern Miss campus or interviewing university employees.

Campus Media Visits

We welcome you to our campus. However, in order to ensure the privacy of our students, faculty and staff, all working news media representatives must contact the Office of University Communications prior to visiting campus. Journalists, photographer/videographers and all other news media representatives must contact the News and Media Relations Manager to set interviews/meetings with faculty, staff and students.

Contacting the Office of University Communications in advances gives us time – when necessary – to notify the University Police Department to provide you with the most convenient parking to maximize your time. We ask that you obtain a temporary parking pass from the Information Booth, located at the first entrance of the campus on East Memorial Drive.

While on campus, members of the news media must be escorted by a staff member from the Office of University Communications. Someone from the Office of University Communications must be present during all interviews and photo shoots and may either take notes or record the interview for internal use.

Interviews

Southern Miss faculty members are encouraged to fulfill media requests regarding their research, classes and their professional expertise. However, we require that journalists contact the Office of University Communications to arrange interviews, obtain background information and locate experts. We require journalists not directly contact university employees.

Campus Emergencies

In the event of an emergency at the University of Southern Mississippi the news media should contact the University Police Department at 601.266.4986. Dispatch personnel will contact someone from the Office of University Communications who will return your call as quickly as possible.

Media Restrictions

While the Office of University Communications makes every effort to accommodate members of the media, there are a few restrictions on media access:

  • The Office of University Communications must approve in advance all still and video photography on campus from which images will be used for commercial profit or distribution, or any use other than reporting for an accredited news outlet
  • The use of still or video images from the campus for advocacy of political positions or candidacies is prohibited
  • Entry to classrooms, offices and dining facilities must be cleared in advance by the Office of University Communications as well as the occupants of the respective offices or the faculty member in charge of a class
  • Access to all residence halls is strictly prohibited without prior permission from the Office of University Communications

These policies may be revoked or revised as deemed necessary by the Assistant to the President for Communications.