Jessica Blais to Lead Marketing, Communications at USC Upstate

March 25, 2018 at 8:57 pm

Jessica Blais joins the staff of the University of South Carolina Upstate on March 26, 2018 as associate vice chancellor for strategic communications and marketing.

Blais will provide strategic leadership, oversight and tactical and technical direction to the institutional marketing and communications team in support of the University’s strategic direction. In her role, she will help to raise the profile of USC Upstate by fostering a spirit of collaboration and delivering creative, compelling and high impact communications that will propel the University forward.

Prior to joining USC Upstate Blais served four years as the director of communications and marketing at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, where she developed and implemented strategies for news, social media and web content. She directed the University’s crisis communications efforts, worked to develop a distinct identity for USFSP, and collaborated with the advancement and admissions teams to help meet the institution’s fundraising and enrollment goals.

With a background in journalism, Blais also served as director of marketing at The Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Fla., one of the nation’s leaders in on-site and online journalism training; an adjunct professor at the University of Tampa, Fla., where she taught writing for advertising and public relations; and as associate editor of Tampa Bay Metro Magazine. Early in her career, she worked in corporate communications and radio news.

“We are thrilled to have Jessica joining the team,” said Dr. Meredith Brunen, vice chancellor for university advancement at USC Upstate. “As a highly competent and well-trained professional, she offers a unique blend of talents and skills that will enhance our approach to strategic communications and marketing. Given her relevant higher education experience, she will be an invaluable leader during this exciting time as we go Up. Together.”

Blais received her Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from the University of South Carolina. She and her husband Patrick, a longtime professor at Eckerd College, have three adult children.

“As a graduate of USC, I am delighted to be returning to the university system that gave me my start,” said Blais. “USC Upstate is clearly on an upward trajectory and I look forward to contributing to a university that is deeply committed to student success and the community.”