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Those interested in becoming event and meeting planners can earn a certificate in event planning. Certificate programs may cover topics such as conference and hotel management, hospitality management and wedding planning. Certificates are offered in credit and non-credit formats, and some schools host online classes in event planning.
Bunker Hill Community College
Bunker Hill Community College is just a couple miles from downtown Boston and offers a certificate program in meeting and event planning. This program prepares students for entry-level jobs in meeting and event planning with training in group management, culinary theory, travel management and accounting. The 27 credits earned during this certificate program may be counted toward the school's associate's degree in meeting and event planning, which covers roughly the same curriculum as the certificate program, with the addition of general education requirements and an internship in hospitality.
Massasoit Community College
Massasoit Community College is situated in Brockton, roughly 25 miles south of Boston. The school offers a 6-course certificate program in event planning that covers educational events, fundraisers, weddings and other social events. During the 90 hours of study, students take courses in food and beverage management, non-profit events, creative design, event industry professions and event marketing. For those who want to gain practical experience, internships are available. Courses for this program are also offered at the college's campus locations in Canton and Middleborough.
North Shore Community College
North Shore Community College is located about 20 miles north of Boston, in Danvers, and offers a variety of non-credit adult training programs. The non-credit certificate of completion program in event planning includes 16 required courses. Some of the topics covered are conflict resolution, wines, event décor, catering, time management, negotiation and floral design.
Northern Essex Community College
Northern Essex Community College is in Haverhill, on the northern tip of Massachusetts. The college has a certificate program in meeting and event planning. Classes are offered at the Riverwalk campus in Lawrence, roughly 8 miles south of the Haverhill campus. The 7-course meeting and event planning program is offered in a module format, and all classes must be taken in order. Courses are provided in meeting and event management, catering design, event marketing, finances for the event planner, social events, corporate event planning and event planning businesses.
University of Massachusetts - Amherst
The University of Massachusetts in Amherst is situated in the central part of the state. The Isenberg School of Management offers several programs in hospitality and tourism management, including a fully online certificate program in meeting and event management. This 5-course program includes studies in meetings and convention management, catering and banquet management, convention sales, event management and hospitality marketing. Students interested in earning a bachelor's degree may enroll in an online Bachelor of Science program in hospitality and tourism management, which offers some event planning electives in convention, catering and event management.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Event Planning Certificate Programs Offered||Tuition (2015-2016)|
|Bunker Hill Community College||2-year, public; large city||Certificate in Meeting and Event Planning||$486 per course for residents, $1,104 per course for non-residents (fees included)*|
|Massasoit Community College||2-year, public; large suburb||Certificate of Completion in Event Planning||$177 per course*|
|North Shore Community College||2-year, public; large suburb||Certificate of Completion in Event Planning||$606 per course for residents, $1,302 per course for non-residents (fees included)*|
|Northern Essex Community College||2-year, public; rural||Certificate in Meeting and Event Planning||$49-95 per course*|
|University of Massachusetts - Amherst||4-year, public; fringe town||Certificate in Meeting and Event Management||$1,575 per course*|
Sources: *School's website