WHY WE STUDIED EVENTS
We loved events so much, we went to school for it
Do you remember going to your first live concert? The energy in the room, the musicians feeling in tune with the music, the entrancing lights illuminating the stage? Or the memories from attending your first wedding? Experiencing the warm feeling that is the romantic nuptials, the classic familiar music playing in the background, and the enchanting florals decorating the room. We sure do! Not only was it momentary bliss but experiences that marked us forever. Going to events made us happy and at young ages, we knew that planning events would make us happier. The owners of Valor Events share why they pursued a career in events and how they received degrees in Resort & Hospitality Management with Event Management Concentrations.
So what made us get into the Events Industry?
I knew from an early age that I wanted to pursue a non-traditional career. Over the years I dabbled into fashion, cooking, and art. When I finally started to feel the pressure in high school to pick a career. I thought about the things I actually enjoyed doing. What I loved more than anything was going to elaborate parties, concerts, and community events. I was first introduced to the world of event planning when volunteering for local organizations. It was my participation in Estero High School’s three-year Hospitality and Tourism Academy that solidified my desire to pursue events as a career. When I found out that you could make a living out of planning events, I knew that was the only thing I wanted to do. Through the academy, I was able to make connections at Florida Gulf Coast University that ultimately led me to receive my degree in Resort and Hospitality Management with a minor in Management and concentration in Event Management.
I’ve gone on to work in all aspects of events from production to catering and everything in between all over Southern Florida. Specializing in non-profit events, therefore no stranger to working with tight budgets. Special events were always my passion and building a business that represents the diversity of my community while making dream celebrations a reality is my goal.
Making dream celebrations a reality is my goal.
I first fell in love with the events industry after watching a scene from The Wedding Planner, where Jennifer Lopez is orchestrating the day of the wedding and pulling all the strings to bring the event to life. Planners work with clients on the smallest to largest details, and get to see everything come together for the special day. This excited me and was the reason I chose this career path. I knew I didn’t want a traditional corporate job, doing the same thing everyday. Instead, floating around town meeting with clients, viewing sites, and sourcing items for upcoming events was what I envisioned for my day to day.
Fast forward a couple years to when I moved to SouthWest Florida, where the events industry is much bigger than my hometown in Kansas. I was new to the area and had little direction on how to bring my dream to life. I searched for a more traditional route and graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University with a degree in Resort and Hospitality Management with a concentration in Event Management. Over the years I was able to grow my skills at some of the most premiere restaurants and hotels in Naples. While also assisting in the coordination of local corporate and special events. I intend to elevate, not just the events I work on but the industry itself.
I intend to elevate, not just the events I work on but the industry itself.
An Education in Events
Imagine taking a college class in which your grade is dependent on how well you plan and execute a party. Well, that’s exactly what we did. However, there is more to education in events than just that. By taking courses in accounting, human resources, and even law we are able to manage our client’s events and our own business, single-handedly. Our time in university gave us hands-on experience both in and outside of the classroom, such as through our internships in local companies and organizations. In turn defining our organizational, creative, and critical thinking skills to the highest level.
According to the U.S. Bureau Of Labor Statistics, the job outlooks for Meeting, Convention, and Event Planners are expected to grow by 8% between 2019 and 2029. There are so many ways to get into the events industry. One option that many choose is to obtain a certification through an association, which is easily accessible and would certainly suffice for a planner to be successful. But for us, we knew we wanted to start our careers through the means of higher education which would submerge us in more than just events and give us a strong foundation to build on. By receiving our degrees in Resort and Hospitality Management we were able to learn about restaurant, hotel, and business management. Today, we have an invaluable understanding of the hospitality industry and its' inner workings. Which in turn we are able to extend to our clients to better serve them and offer the most value.