Becoming a Wedding and Event Planner in Mississippi
Planning/hosting an event is no easy feat! As an event/wedding planner, your job is to take care of all aspects of the event so your clients can focus on enjoying their day. for that reason, most people hire wedding and events planners to relieve themselves from the stress of doing it on their own.
Although event planning can be a lot of work, it comes with several perks – exotic sightseeing, networking and building relationships where you get to meet amazing people.
Requirements for Becoming a Wedding and Event Planner
As an event planner, you should have the ability to think on your feet, be resourceful, intuitive, energetic, and creative. in addition, your job requires you to manage people, deal with challenges and handle pressure.
Your duties will include:
- Sourcing for venues
- Making budgets
- Time allocation for activities
- Coordinating with vendors and managing staff
At the end of every event, you’d also have to evaluate the work done, audit accounts and settle all outstanding debts and obligations.
While you can develop some of these skills outside of a formal setting, you’ll need some training to develop technical skills like auditing and evaluation.
Education and Training
You don’t need any formal training to work as an event planner in Mississippi. However, if you want to become a top-earning event planner, educational certifications are necessary. a Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management is an excellent place to start.
Below are some of the certifications you might want to consider in Mississippi:
- The University of Mississippi: The University offers a Bachelor of Science degree in Hospitality Management. The program contains hands-on experience and internships.
- Mississippi State University: The University offers a Bachelor of Applied Technology (BAT) degree focusing on Event and Hospitality Services. This program is open to those who have completed technical coursework in marketing management, hospitality and other related professions. Through the Center for Continuing Education, the University offers an online training course in Event Management and Design.
- University of Southern Mississippi: The University offers a degree program n Hospitality and Tourism Management. There are three different tracks to choose from – Hotel, Casino and Resort Management, Food and Beverage Management and Event Management.
Relevant Professional Memberships
There are two ways to work as an event planner in Mississippi. You can decide to be a local independent event planner or work as a part of a company.
You can join some professional society to improve your networking opportunities and increase your credibility for both options. Here is a couple of bodies you can consider joining as an event planner in Mississippi
- Mississippi Chapter of the American Planning Association (APA): This is a professional body of planning professionals. Membership includes event planners, caterers and those in related fields.
- International Special Events Society (ISES). ISES is a global body of planning professions in over 35 countries. Membership includes caterers, event planners, party and convention coordinators, specialty entertainers, and related disciplines.
Salary Expectations and Career Outlook
Currently, there are 240 employed wedding and events planners in the state.According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average salary for event/wedding planners in Mississippi is $44,860 per year and $21.57 hourly.
Beginner’s salaries start from $23,850, while top earners in Mississippi make more than $62,850 annually.
Keep in mind that you develop and sharpen most skills with experience. So, it would help if you considered starting as interns or event directors with corporate bodies/student unions. The knowledge you get from those positions is vital to building your portfolio and connecting with people.
Working as an Event Planner in Mississippi
Planning an event/wedding in Mississippi is an absolute joy for those who have the passion for it. There is always a little history behind every corner. The North and North-West area boasts incredible rolling hills. At the same time, the Mississippi River and the Gulf of Mexico provide a beautiful waterfront backdrop.
These scenes give you several breathtaking landscapes to work with every time. With all of these scenic advantages, you can get as creative as you and your clients would like.
Keep in mind that your event planning career might not always be smooth. So, be prepared to put in all the hard work and determination you’ll need.