University Degree vs Event Management Diploma

If you are looking at event management degree courses, you may well be feeling torn between a 3 year university course and a shorter or part time hands-on Event Management course, such as those offered by Terbell Event Courses UK in London or Brighton.

This page aims to explain the main differences to help you to choose the event management qualification best suited to you.

1.    Cost

Event Management university courses can charge up to £9,000 per year. This means that a typical 3 year course is likely to cost you in excess of £27,000. Student loans are available to help cover the cost of degree courses, and you will not be required to begin repayment until your salary reaches a certain threshold, but it is still a huge financial commitment that needs serious consideration.

A part time diploma course in Event Management is the equivalent to Level 1 of a full degree, and, where taught by an organisation certified by the Institute of Commercial Management (ICM), like Terbell Event Courses UK, will cost from around £1,500 – a fraction of the cost of a degree. The certification is important as it means a course has been recognised by employers within our industry as being both thorough and practical. A good part time diploma course will also give you, as a student, the opportunity to network with industry professionals and attend trade shows regularly, as well as assist you with up to date information on Event Management jobs, exhibitions and general help getting into the event industry once you have gained your diploma.

2.    Continue to earn whilst you study

A full time event management university course will not afford you the time to have a job, other than perhaps a little part time and/or evening work. On the other hand, you may only have to commit to two evenings a week for a part time diploma over a 14 week period, alongside some additional project work which you can complete in your own time. This will enable you to continue with a day job as you work towards your chosen career.

If you are planning on undertaking an event management course as a career change or as part of a career development plan, then being able to keep your day job may well be an extremely important factor. If you have just finished school or college, it may be that you want the freedom (and social life) of being a full time student, but not everyone wants to go into full time study, for any number of reasons, so it makes financial sense to be able to earn whilst you study.

3.    Event Work Experience

Universities will encourage you to gain Event Management work experience, especially during your holidays. Some degree courses will also include a ‘sandwich year’ – a year spent in employment between the second and third years of your degree in order to gain practical, industry experience. With a part time diploma, taking on a work placement alongside the course is likely to be very much encouraged and the teaching organisation should have extensive industry connections which will provide suitable, bespoke internships for students.

It is important to be aware that in these times of recession and unemployment, employers are looking not only at qualifications but also work experience. Most employers are therefore more likely to favour a motivated diploma student who has shown dedication and gained real industry experience with industry references to reflect this, over a university graduate who lacks any practical knowledge or work experience.

4.    Time

A three year event management degree course means you will take at least 3 years before you join the workforce of your desired career. This, you may feel is a wise move in the current climate, as the job market may have improved by the time you graduate. However, a 14 week course will give you the knowledge and tools that allow you to begin working in event management much sooner. If you are concerned at the current climate and its effect on your career prospects, then volunteering is a great way to further improve your skills and gain valuable industry experience. It is also a very good way of standing out from the crowd of other contenders for roles in event management.

5.    Employment Prospects

After completing your event management degree, you are likely to find that you are only one of a large number of graduates seeking work and with whom you are competing. Those who stand the best chance of being offered a position in event management are those who have gained some real industry experience. Work experience and volunteering show future employers that you know what to expect from a real job and that you are capable of applying what you have learnt in the classroom to real life scenarios. Volunteering also shows that you have the motivation and commitment to pursue your career in event management seriously. A large percentage of university students forget this and believe that getting a degree from a good university will be enough. However, with so many graduates and so few jobs this may very well no longer be the case – if it ever was.

Students completing the Part Time Diploma in Event Management with Terbell Event Courses UK will have had every opportunity to network with industry professionals and gain practical event management skills, alongside the all-important theory behind it, learnt through real life case studies. This means our students are fully prepared for an event interview, with the ability to give a potential employer hard evidence of their skills and dedication and in many cases industry testimonials to back them up.

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