Schools for Event Planning in the U.S.

Aspiring event planners who are looking for the right education will have the option of an associate's degree program or a bachelor's degree program. Many community colleges offer associate's degrees in event management and planning, while a bachelor's degree is typically offered by a university's school of hospitality. States that attract large numbers of tourists are often home to universities and community colleges that have event planning programs.

How to Select an Event Planning School

Two degree options exist for prospective students who wish to enter into the event planning field. These include an associate's degree in event planning and a bachelor's degree in event planning and management.

An associate's degree in event planning can be completed in two years. In contrast, a bachelor's degree takes four years to complete, but it better positions graduates for jobs in the hospitality industry. In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, most employers seek out candidates who hold a bachelor's degree in event planning, which may allow graduates to move into positions of responsibility much quicker than if they had an associate's degree.

However, an employee's desire to learn and his or her commitment to the position are also keys to advancement in this industry.

School location is another important consideration for aspiring event planners. For example, a school located in Florida, which attracts a large number of tourists each year, is more likely to have large and established schools of hospitality at its major universities. A student attending one of these schools would also be better positioned to obtain an internship while still enrolled.

Real world experience in an internship with a local hotel or resort can help ease the transition into finding a job. Many employers prefer candidates who have completed an internship and have letters of reference that can attest to a job applicant's ability to perform in a hospitality setting, so those opportunities are a key quality to look for when selecting an event planning school.

Largest Schools by Student Population

College/University Student Population Institution Type
Miami Dade College 57,222 4-year, primarily associate's, Public
University of Central Florida 50,121 4-year, Public
Michigan State University 46,510 4-year, Public
University of South Florida 46,189 4-year, Public
Pennsylvania State University-Main Campus 44,406 4-year, Public
Northern Virginia Community College 42,663 2-year, Public
Purdue University-Main Campus 41,433 4-year, Public
College of Southern Nevada 40,310 4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Tarrant County College District 39,596 2-year, Public
Florida International University 38,759 4-year, Public
Florida State University 38,682 4-year, Public
Austin Community College District 35,798 2-year, Public
Temple University 35,490 4-year, Public
Valencia Community College 35,460 2-year, Public
San Diego State University 34,889 4-year, Public
University of North Texas 34,830 4-year, Public
Pima Community College 34,136 2-year, Public
Broward College 3,3448 2-year, Public
San Jose State University 32,746 4-year, Public
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University 30,739 4-year, Public

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