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OLCF Science Writer and Communications Specialist

Date: Jun 18, 2022

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 8077 


 Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is seeking an experienced science writer who is passionate about computational science and its impact on solving some of the nation’s most challenging issues. The position resides in ORNL’s Communications Division and supports the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF), home to the country’s fastest supercomputer.

The OLCF was established at ORNL in 2004 with the mission of accelerating scientific discovery and engineering progress by providing outstanding computing and data management resources to high-priority research and development projects. The OLCF gives the world’s most advanced computational researchers an opportunity to tackle problems that would be unthinkable on other systems. The facility welcomes investigators from universities, government agencies, and industry who are prepared to perform breakthrough research in artificial intelligence, materials, energy sources and energy storage, chemistry, nuclear physics, astrophysics, quantum mechanics, and the gamut of scientific inquiry.

This job is based on the ORNL campus in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and is full-time onsite.


Major Duties/Responsibilities:

  • Learn about, understand, and communicate about complex science- and technology-related topics and work with senior scientists and managers to produce timely, interesting, and compelling science and technology articles that convey the importance and excitement of the work at ORNL to multiple audiences, including the Department of Energy, scientifically trained researchers and sponsors, and the public.
  • Write news releases, feature articles, science highlights, website content, promotional pieces, presentations, fact sheet content, video scripts, and other materials that clearly and effectively communicate research findings, technical developments, key programming messages, and other news and information.


  • Interact with scientific staff to identify and track upcoming results and accomplishments that can be made into compelling content.


  • Organize and analyze information from various scientific and often highly technical sources, including interviews with subject matter experts and review of published scientific papers, to produce written materials in concise and approachable language without loss of technical meaning.
  • Collaborate with technical editors to ensure adherence to grammar and style guidelines.
  • Assist in growing OLCF’s social media presence by developing content, posting regular updates, planning campaigns, and identifying new channels for social media promotion.
  • Assist in creation of other multimedia content, including materials for websites, videos, and other media channels.


  • Collaborate with the OLCF’s communications team lead, other members of the OLCF team, and staff members from Communications and Creative Services to provide the OLCF with needed support and required products.
  • Suggest visual material in support of scientific and promotional information needs. Work with designers, illustrators, photographers, and videographers to develop attractive and high-visual-impact products.
  • Work with external media, including science and trade publications, on coverage of the OLCF.
  • Comply with environment, safety, health, and quality program requirements.
  • Maintain a strong commitment to the implementation and perpetuation of values and ethics.


Basic Qualifications:

  • A bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, public relations, English, a science, or a related field.
  • A minimum of 5 years of experience producing communications products on science- and/or technology-related subjects for diverse audiences


Preferred Qualifications:

The ideal candidate will have the ability to dive into the minutiae of scientific progress while maintaining awareness of high-level strategic objectives. Communications experience in a national laboratory setting or other large research institution, including academia and industry, is preferred. Experience working with and developing strategic communications plans is beneficial. Technical training or a background in science is a plus. Videography and video editing experience is also a plus.

The successful candidate should have excellent scientific/technical reading, editing, and writing skills (will be expected to provide writing samples). Demonstrated ability to work with scientists and engineers to build expertise and earn trusted collaborator status is necessary. The candidate should be able to manage communications projects from concept to completion in collaboration with other team members; develop content for multiple platforms, including social media, video, and web; and create content that aligns with communications strategic objectives. The successful candidate should have excellent attention to detail; the ability to understand, follow, and implement complex instructions; strong organizational skills, including the flexibility to simultaneously handle several assignments; and excellent verbal communication and interpersonal skills.

The candidate should possess strong skills in solving problems and developing and implementing solutions; the ability to prioritize and meet deadlines; and the ability to work—both independently (under minimal supervision) and with all levels of researchers and staff—in a team-based collaborative environment.



This position will remain open for a minimum of 5 days after which it will close when a qualified candidate is identified and/or hired.

We accept Word (.doc, .docx), Adobe (unsecured .pdf), Rich Text Format (.rtf), and HTML (.htm, .html) up to 5MB in size. Resumes from third party vendors will not be accepted; these resumes will be deleted and the candidates submitted will not be considered for employment.

If you have trouble applying for a position, please email

ORNL is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants, including individuals with disabilities and protected veterans, are encouraged to apply.  UT-Battelle is an E-Verify employer.

Nearest Major Market: Knoxville