Kettering University has named Jennifer Umberger as its new Vice President of Marketing and Communications (VPMC), effective Feb. 1.
With more than two decades of marketing and communications experience, Umberger comes to Kettering from Commonwealth University of Pennsylvania (formerly Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania), where she served as the Associate Vice President of Marketing and Communications and Chief Marketing and Communications Officer. In that role, she oversaw executive communications, enrollment marketing, university marketing and brand management, strategic communications and media relations, as well as athletic communications and marketing. She also was a strategic lead in partnership with Pennsylvania's State System of Higher Education.
“I am excited about the talent and experience Jennifer brings to the University,” said Kettering University President Dr. Robert McMahan. “She has already established a proven track record as a creative and effective marketer and communicator. But she also brings us a depth of leadership experience in higher education that will add significantly to our leadership team. I look forward to working with her to transform our marketing and communications strategy and, in doing so, effectively communicate to the world what an amazing and life-changing institution Kettering truly is.”
Under Umberger’s leadership, Commonwealth electronic and print marketing materials received multiple CUPPIE Awards from the College & University Public Relations and Associated Professionals (CUPRAP), a regional organization of communications professionals from colleges, universities and independent schools. Umberger’s experience also includes marketing and communications in the commercial real estate sector.
As the University’s chief marketing and communications officer, Umberger will lead the development and implementation of Kettering University’s marketing and communications strategy to promote the institution, increase its visibility and support Kettering’s mission, vision, and Pillars of Success. She also will oversee all marketing, advertising and communications efforts designed to attract top students, motivate alumni and donors and recruit high-quality faculty and staff.
“I am inspired by Kettering’s strategic focus, aligning academics, cooperative experiences and co-curricular involvement in a way that uniquely articulates the value of higher education and the return on investment a student can expect,” she said. “It’s a privilege to steward the Kettering University story.”
Umberger earned a Bachelor’s degree in History with a Mass Communication Concentration and Public Relations Emphasis from Albion College and a Master of Business Administration from Augsburg University.
She is a member of the American Marketing Association and is a board member and co-chair of the conference and programming committee for CUPRAP. She has presented at their conferences and others on marketing, public relations and philanthropy. Umberger also serves on the National Housing Corporation Board for Alpha Xi Delta women’s fraternity.
Interim VPMC Betsy Homsher will step away from the interim appointment and resume her duties as Special Assistant to the President.