Graduate Schools and Degrees in Event Planning

Read on to learn how graduate school programs can help you fulfill your dream of planning the perfect event. See what degree programs are available and what you'll learn. Find out about program requirements. Get advice on choosing a school. Schools offering Hospitality Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

If you want to pursue event planning coursework at the graduate level, you'll most likely have to enroll in a tourism and hospitality management program. Some schools may offer specializations in event planning or allow you to take related elective coursework to customize your degree.

Degrees Master of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management, Master of Tourism Administration
Certificates Professional Certificate in Event Management, Professional Certificate in Destination Management
Courses Hospitality marketing management, event coordination, best practices in event management, event fundraising and sponsorship, meetings and conferences

What Graduate Programs in Event Planning Are Available to Me?

You might find event planning graduate certificate programs at some schools, but these are not commonly offered. Most schools offer tourism and hospitality management certificates with meeting management or event administration electives. These 1- to 2-year programs can provide you with an introduction to the hospitality field. Master's degrees in tourism and hospitality management are also available. These 2-year programs may offer an event management concentration or event management elective coursework to professionals who want to advance in the field.

How Do I Pick a School?

You may want to ensure that a school has expert faculty members with extensive experience in the event planning field. Educators who have a strong connection to professionals in the industry can help you with networking opportunities. You may also want to consider schools that will offer you the opportunity to gain experience in the field. Some schools' internship programs place students in entry-level positions at theme parks or resort hotels. Others allow you to complete practicums in the hospitality industry of your choice, such as with an event planning agency. These internships may require you to build a professional portfolio that can be presented to future employers.

You can find a graduate degree in event planning at one of the following schools:

  • University of North Texas (Denton)
  • George Washington University (Washington, D.C.)
  • Colorado State University (Fort Collins)
  • Temple University (Philadelphia, PA)
  • University of Central Florida (Orlando)
  • Cornell University (Ithaca, NY)

What Topics Will I Study?

Graduate certificate programs cover the managerial responsibilities of event planning, such as dealing with vendors and staging a special occasion. You may also discuss topics such as crowd control and ticketing. These topics will be covered:

  • Hospitality and tourism information technology
  • Social media in hospitality and tourism
  • Digital marketing
  • Big data management

What Other Topics Can I Study?

Master's degree programs offer core coursework in research and finance for tourism and hospitality management. Areas of specialization may include event management. Other degree programs include event planning electives in topics, such as convention and meeting planning or event entertainment. Both types of master's degree programs may feature courses on:

  • Tourism trends
  • Strategic planning
  • Marketing
  • Venue selection
  • Recruitment of event volunteers

Can I Complete Event Planning Courses Online?

Online graduate certificate and master's degree programs in tourism and hospitality management are available. You will study the same coursework as you would in a traditional classroom setting.

You may be required to complete brief on-campus residencies, where you will learn how to access online courses and present your thesis or capstone project. For both degree and certificate programs, you may also need to complete an internship or practicum, but you may be able to do these near your residence.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

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