The UK events industry

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An introduction to the flourishing events industry in the UK and the events management courses that can open doors to a variety of career opportunities.

The events management industry is a dynamic, vibrant and flourishing sector in which to work and study with excellent and rewarding career opportunities both in the UK and overseas. It is an industry that has grown significantly over the past decade and is as diverse as it is large; it draws on the skills and personalities of a wide range of people offering stimulating, varied and rewarding careers.

A recent report (produced by KMPG and the AEO) reveals that the exhibition industry alone contributes £9.3 billion to the UK economy and supports some 137,000 jobs. Exhibitions are just a small part of the overall picture, as is the UK; events management on an international scale is seriously big business and covers most industry sectors. Both private and public sector organisations require events specialists and invest in meetings, exhibitions, road shows and conferences.

Due to the growth of the sector, events management is becoming increasingly important as a specialist field of study. Indeed, it is now a recognised discipline and offers far more attractive career prospects than it did less than a decade ago.

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“Events are diverse and can range from small bespoke private functions to large scale exhibitions”

Events are diverse and can range from small bespoke private functions to large scale exhibitions, festivals, award ceremonies, sports tournaments, music concerts and world events such as the Olympic Games. Many of these larger events have a truly international dimension with international delegates, logistics, marketing and multiple locations. Future employers of events management students can include events companies; hotels; charities and trade associations; festival organisations; conference centres; and football clubs.

Competition for event related positions is high and students planning a career within the sector will most definitely be far better prepared if they have proven, practical experience to show prospective employers. The most relevant events management courses have a strong practical focus and respond to the needs of the industry.

Foreign language study, international work experience and a study period abroad will all enhance a student’s future career prospects.

Events management students can expect to study a balance of core and elective modules, combing theory and practice. Modules may include the economics of tourism and events; human resource management within the events industry; international events law; project planning and IT; marketing for international events management; and organisational behaviour.

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