Sarah Paris is the director of communications for the UCSF School of Medicine, the largest school at the University, which occupies seven major sites in San Francisco and Fresno and consistently ranks among the top US medical schools, both in national surveys and in dollars awarded by the National Institutes of Health.
A native of Switzerland, Paris came to UCSF in 1995 and now works directly with Dean Sam Hawgood, MBBS, and with the school’s leadership to communicate news and information about the school.
What does your job entail at UCSF, and how is it connected to the University’s mission?
Communication is the lifeblood of an institution. We all need basic information and tools to do our work efficiently, but to thrive, we also need exposure to news and stories that instruct, inspire, spur collaborations and build community. My goal is to deliver useful information and compelling stories to our internal and external audiences via the most effective media channels. Given UCSF’s decentralized structure, this is by nature a collaborative effort, and we have many staff and faculty charged with or interested in communications. To optimize everyone’s efforts, I co-founded the UCSF Communicators Network as a hub for resources, best practices and peer support.
What’s something that members of the UCSF community would be surprised to know about you?
I’m happiest sitting in the shade of my favorite oak, writing haiku and other forms of poetry.
When you were young, what did you want to be professionally?
A poet and a writer. I’m fortunate to be in a position which allows me to communicate creatively with words and images, and which gives me the opportunity to collaborate with so many talented colleagues.