Event Planning Courses and Training Programs

Event planning can be learned through many related programs, including meeting planning. Continue reading to see the types of event planning courses and training programs, and find out how these core classes can prepare you to become an event planner.

Essential Information

Event planning courses are typically available through programs in event management, event planning and meeting planning, which are offered from the certificate to the master's degree level. Some schools have event planning available as a minor in a degree program such as hospitality and tourism. Certificate programs are the shortest option varying from 2 months to 1 full semester of fall and spring classes.

Generally, there are no prerequisites other than having a high school diploma. Through event planning classes, students learn to organize and plan all aspects of business and social events, including the food, the location and the décor. Along with hands-on assignments, there may be core and elective coursework.

List of Event Planning Courses

Here's a sampling of courses typically found in program related to event planning.

Meeting Planning Basics

Students learn the absolute basics of planning and coordinating meetings in this introductory event planning course. The course discusses how to make contacts and organize an event. Students learn about legal issues in event planning, event coordination, promotions, entertainment and other relevant topics.

Promotion and Marketing

Students in this event planning class learn about the use of marketing tools and advertising to promote events such as conferences, conventions and fundraisers. Since many event planners are self-employed or are responsible for finding customers, students learn to use marketing tools. Coursework typically includes creating event marketing plans that can be used as outlines for future projects.

Design and Production

This event design course develops students' abilities to manage materials, staff, entertainment and other event planning resources. Students gain practical experience in setting up events and making sure all aspects of the program are organized properly. Topics include serving staff coordination, food delivery and guest registration.

Catering Management

Catering management courses provide an overview of managing the food preparation workers, catering staff, drivers and other workers for weddings, conferences and other events. The course involves specific tips for determining prices and choosing menus. Students gain practice catering events and working with staff. They also become familiar with different on-site expectations. This course may be taken near the middle of a student's event planning education.

Weddings and Social Events

Since weddings are a big industry, some event planners focus on the wedding business, but others manage only certain aspects of it. This event planning course, which addresses weddings and related events, involves an overview of helping people plan every aspect of their weddings, including budgeting and choosing locations. The course identifies ways to organize the events so the couples are happy and the events less stressful.

Training Programs

Programs in event planning are offered at many community colleges, colleges and universities. An event planning program can take anywhere from 2-4 years of study and typically involves both lectures and practical event organization work. Depending on the program, graduates might earn a certificate, associate's degree, bachelor's degree or master's degree in event planning.

Job opportunities for graduates of event planning training program should experience faster-than-average growth, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. For example, the BLS projects that the employment of convention and meeting planners will increase by 16% between 2008-2018, since most corporations host events at some point.

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