How to Become an Event/Wedding Planner in Maryland
Planning events, no matter how big or small takes a certain kind of person. These individuals must be highly organized, detail-oriented, and possess excellent communication skills. If you are interested in becoming a wedding and event planner in Maryland, you’re in for an exciting opportunity. Bear in mind, however, that you must be able to think on your toes, especially if something goes awry.
Many people feel quite overwhelmed by the idea of planning an event. As a result, they are more than happy to hand the reins over to someone else. As an event or wedding planner in Maryland, you can expect to perform some of the following tasks:
- Meeting with potential clients to discuss budget and design their event
- Liaising with event venues, caterers, and entertainment
- Conducting sales and marketing functions
- Creating budgets and preparing financial reconciliations
- Creating contractual documents
- Overseeing events and troubleshooting problems
Aspiring wedding and event planners should know that long hours including evenings and weekends are the norm in this industry. Many wedding planners and some event planners decide to open their own businesses. in that case, some formal training and experience working under someone more established can be highly beneficial. This experience allows would-be wedding and event planners to know the ins and outs of running such a fast-paced business. If you enjoy pulling the strings in the background and enjoy seeing everything come together, read on to determine whether a career in the event planning industry could be a fit for you.
What is Required?
Maryland doesn’t require any specific training for those wishing to work in the events industry. However, many organizations that hire event planners choose candidates with a certain amount of knowledge before coming into the position. Those wishing to open their own business, whether in general events or weddings, need to establish a relationship of trust with clients. With formal training, potential clients will feel safer knowing that their event is in the hands of a seasoned professional.
There are several paths of study that can be used to enter the events industry. If possible, an events management program is a great choice. However, programs in hospitality, communications, and event public relations can get you on your way as well. Here is a sample of several programs that Maryland has to offer:
- Allegany College of Maryland, Cumberland, MD: Allegany provides a one-year certificate program in Catering and Events Management
- College of Southern Maryland, La Plata, MD: The college offers certificates in both Meeting and Events Planning and Wedding Coordinating
- Montgomery College, Rockville, MD: Montgomery offers a Meeting, Conference, and Event Planning certificate program
Career Outlook and Salary Expectations
According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), event planning will see an 18 percent jump in the number of available positions from 2020 to 2030. This massive jump is due to the industry recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic. in Maryland, the job outlook is slightly lower at 12 percent, but this is still much higher than in other sectors.
Across the nation, event planners pull in an average of $51,560 per year, which translates to $24.79 per hour. in Maryland, the average yearly earnings are even higher at $53,450, which works out to $25.70 per hour. Keep in mind that this is just an average; training and the organization you’re working for can mean a higher or lower salary.
Working in Maryland
Events and wedding planners in Maryland can work in urban and rural areas. However, for those just starting in the industry, seeking employment in areas with more people could help kickstart their careers. The top 3 cities by population in Maryland are:
1. Baltimore – 585,708
2. Columbia – 104, 681
3. Germantown – 91,249
The best places to look for work would be convention centers, hotels, government offices, and even sports teams.