Wednesday, May 11, 2011

How to Become A Wedding Planner

Wedding planning is an exciting career in a fast growing industry. People who love weddings and interact well with others cater to the needs of couples planning for their big day. Future wedding planners must possess patience, innate organizational abilities, fantastic communication skills, and an enthusiasm to meet clients’ needs. Future wedding planners must possess above average time management skills, effective accounting principles, and a tremendous amount of creativity. Future wedding planners can prepare for their careers in high school by taking courses like: english, psychology, accounting, business mathematics, and physical education. As there are no official requirements or college courses of study to begin a career as a wedding planner, individuals may gain experience through certificate programs.

Students enrolled in a certificate program earn credentials necessary to gain career related training to become professional wedding planners. Most certificate courses train individuals to assist couples in planning, coordinating, and staging wedding ceremonies and receptions. Most certificate programs require a 6 month time investment and require candidates to study through videos, discussions, and course instruction. Certificate programs are available through traditional trade or vocational schools or through online colleges. Certificate classes offer courses in: ethnic weddings, bridal fashion, site selection, contract writing, payment collection, vendor negotiation, the history of weddings, industry etiquette, business planning courses, wedding gown selection, and marketing and public relations. Students who complete a certificate program may qualify for exams offered through the Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants (ACPWC). An ACPWC credential allows individuals the opportunity to receive client referrals and gain business clients. Graduates from a certificate program who complete certification exams may gain entry into the workforce as a wedding planner or advance to a higher degree.

Attaining an associates degree in a wedding planning related discipline, like event planning, can assist in preparing individuals for a future career as a wedding planner. Students study courses through many online colleges or trade, vocational, or community college programs. Students participate in courses like: basics of wedding planning, wedding etiquette, vendors and contracts, budgeting, wedding traditions, wedding parties, wedding planner business development, wedding ceremony planning, special circumstance wedding ceremonies course, sales, marketing, and public relations. Students can then advance to an internship program under the supervision of a trained wedding planner to gain work experience and expand educational training. Students who complete a wedding planner course through an online or traditional college program can begin a business as a certified wedding planner. Completing licensing exams offered through the Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants (ACPWC) give candidates the opportunity to receive client referrals and gain business contacts.

Students who wish to pursue a bachelor degree or higher must choose a related major, like event planning, to hold an advanced degree for a career in wedding planning. Courses like: budgeting, project management, public relations, problem solving, event planning, contract law, marketing, history of weddings, writing business plans, bridal gowns, wedding music, and destination weddings prepare students for future careers as wedding planners. An internship under the supervision of a qualified event or wedding planner allows individuals the opportunity to expand educational and “hands on” training. Licensing exams administered by the Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants (ACPWC) allows students the opportunity to gain business contacts and receive client referrals upon successful completion of educational training. Students may also advance to higher degree programs.

A masters degree in event planning allows students to gain educational and career related knowledge necessary to plan events like weddings, conventions, meetings, concerts, or parties. A master degree also allows individuals to hold management level positions within an organization or advance an existing wedding planning business. Students enrolled in a master degree program take specialized courses in: information management, data analysis, economics and organizational planning, hospitality, human resource management, hospitality marketing, financial analysis, strategic management, research methods, communications, event planning, public relations, marketing, and accounting. Students who complete a master degree program in event planning must write a masters thesis in addition to completing an internship under the supervision of an event planner. Upon completion a master degree program, students can participate in examinations offered through the Association of Professional Wedding Consultants to gain business referrals and contacts. Completion of a masters degree program and licensing requirements as determined by state or facility regulations allow individuals to be experts in the field of event or wedding planning.


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