Science Writer and Communications Specialist

Date: Feb 21, 2024

Location: Oak Ridge, TN, US, 37830

Company: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Requisition Id 12393 


Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is seeking a science writer and communications specialist who is interested in contributing to the advancement of supercomputing. This on-site position resides in ORNL’s Communications Division and is matrixed to the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility (OLCF), which is home to Frontier, the world’s fastest supercomputer and first to exceed the exascale performance barrier.


The ideal candidate will have experience writing about scientific and technical subject matter, and creating and implementing digital content such as social media, websites, and video.


In support of US Department of Energy missions, ORNL offers the most diverse research and development portfolio among 17 national laboratories. Our immense store of computing power enables scientists and mathematicians from across the globe accelerate scientific discovery across a broad range of disciplines while advancing US technological leadership. ORNL contains the institutional knowledge needed to transform basic science into cutting-edge energy and security applications critical to national interests.


Major Duties/Responsibilities:

  • Understand and write about complex science- and technology-related topics and materials and work with senior scientists and managers to produce timely, interesting, and compelling science and technology articles that readily convey the importance and excitement of the work at ORNL to multiple audiences, including DOE, scientifically trained researchers and sponsors, and the public.

  • Write news releases, feature articles, science highlights, website content, promotional pieces, fact sheet content, social media content, and other materials that clearly and effectively communicate research findings, technical developments, key programming messages, and other news and information.

  • Organize information from various scientific and often highly technical sources, including interviews with subject matter experts, and produce written materials in concise language without loss of technical meaning and with meticulous attention to logic, consistency, and accuracy. Collaborate with technical editors to ensure adherence to grammar and style guidelines.

  • Develop content for the division’s social media channels, including LinkedIn, X, Facebook, and YouTube. Develop strategy to drive ongoing engagement with compelling posts and material.

  • Develop, update, and maintain informative and compelling website content, adhering to a consistent schedule to keep information fresh and encourage return visits.

  • Incorporate multi-media into overall communications strategy. Suggest visual material in support of scientific and promotional information needs. Work with graphic designers, photographers, and video producers to develop attractive and high-visual-impact products.

  • Collaborate with the OLCF’s communications team lead, other members of OLCF, Communications, and Creative Services to provide needed support and required products.

  • 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, English, or a science-related field.

  • A minimum of 2 years of experience producing communications products for general audiences


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Communications experience in a national laboratory setting or with DOE staff is a plus.

  • Experience writing about science and/or technology-related subjects for general audiences is preferred.

  • Experience coordinating social media for organizations is preferred.

  • Excellent attention to detail; the ability to understand, follow, and implement complex instructions; strong organizational skills.

  • Flexibility to simultaneously handle several assignments for multiple customers.

  • Ability to assist the team in developing communications projects from concept to completion within deadlines.


Benefits at ORNL:  

ORNL offers competitive pay and benefits programs to attract and retain talented people. The laboratory offers many employee benefits, including medical and retirement plans and flexible work hours, to help you and your family live happy and healthy. Employee amenities such as on-site fitness, banking, and cafeteria facilities are also provided for convenience.


Other benefits include: Prescription Drug Plan, Dental Plan, Vision Plan, 401(k) Retirement Plan, Contributory Pension Plan, Life Insurance, Pet Insurance, Disability Benefits, Generous Vacation and Holidays, Parental Leave, Legal Insurance with Identity Theft Protection, Employee Assistance Plan, Flexible Spending Accounts, Health Savings Accounts, Wellness Programs, Educational Assistance, Relocation Assistance, and Employee Discounts.




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