Dara Royer is the senior vice president and chief communications officer at Syracuse University.She is the first leader of the school’s marketing and communications division and is responsible for oversight of internal and external marketing efforts including media relations, strategic marketing campaigns and brand stewardship for the school. She is in charge of a team of about 80 people who all work to make Syracuse one of the best private universities in the world. Dara has worked in other high-level marketing jobs prior to her joining the higher education world in 2017.  She was previously chief development and marketing officer for Mercy Corps, a humanitarian and development nonprofit where she was responsible for private, corporate and foundation fundraising, global marketing and brand development. She was also in charge of brand marketing for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the largest healthcare charity in the world. Dara  started her career as an Emmy and Associated Press award winning television journalist with ABC, CBS and NBC affiliates after earning her bachelor’s degree in history. Press play to learn more about how to break into the communications field at a major university. 


  • Why your major doesn’t matter 
  • How to create your own brand and stay true to yourself
  • Why knowledge of data analytics and experience innovating are useful marketing skills
  • How being an effective storyteller can help you excel in the industry
  • Why a graduate degree is not mandatory to enter the field
  • What life experiences can help make you a more desirable candidate
  • Why to listen to Dara’s main Time4Coffee episode #203 to learn more about what it’s like to be the chief communications officer at a major university
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