Event Planning

About our Program

This 90-hour certificate program provides students with the process of planning, marketing, implementing and evaluating the outcome of all types of events within the industry—social (weddings), corporate, nonprofit fundraising, educational and celebratory themed special events.

Students will gain the required knowledge and skills to succeed in this rapidly growing and rewarding global industry. A variety of teaching methods are used, including classroom group projects, guest lectures, and field trips. Internship opportunities are available throughout the year to expose and prepare students. This program is ideal for those who are currently working in the industry, are looking to gain knowledge to start a career in event planning or desire to start their own event planning business.

Certificate of Completion

A certificate will be awarded upon successful completion of all six courses. Courses must be taken in sequential order.

Fall Semester:

Career Essentials of Event Management

The introductory course explores the various career opportunities in the field of event planning and the skills necessary to enter and succeed in the field.

Foundations of Event Planning

Foundations of Event Planning examines the many skills event planners are called on to use during the process of executing an event.  The course will also examine some common types of events that require the skills of a professional planner.

Event Marketing

Event Marketing will explore various marketing tools from the traditional to the emerging to successfully promote an event.  It will also cover the role of marketing in the event life cycle, demonstrating the best use of marketing tactics while utilizing evaluation techniques to measure a successful outcome.  

Spring Semester:

Event Design and Decor

Event Design and Decor will examine the process of identifying client needs and preferences, researching design options and creating unique decor elements to support the events goals and objectives.  Students will learn how important the design phase process is, using the talent and skills of internal and external team members.

Event Production and Logistics

Event Production and Logistics will cover the many steps a planner must take to ensure the event goals and objectives are reached in a creative, unique and successful manner utilizing lighting, staging, audiovisual, and entertainment elements.

Event Planning Standout Student
Alycia Nazzaro

Event Planning - Alycia Nazzaro

Alycia Nazzaro always had an interest in event planning.  She had considered a career in the field but wasn’t sure how to get started.  When the opportunities to plan a few events for members of her family came up, Alycia jumped on them.  Those experiences, and encouragement from a relative, led her to register for the Event Planning certificate program at Massasoit Community College.

There was much Alycia learned as she started the courses in September of 2017.  Among the most important things she learned was how to step outside of her comfort zone and network.  While much of the instruction took place in the classroom, numerous field trips to event planning association meetings and expos gave Alycia the experience of networking with professionals in the event planning field.  Instructor, Karen Salhaney Smizer, played a crucial role in Alycia’s success in the class.  “Karen was very encouraging and supportive.  She always pushed us to improve”, said Alycia.

Within four months of completing the program, Alycia secured an event planning job at BC Tent & Awning Co, Inc.  The certificate she earned gave her the qualifications to start a career in the field she had hoped to break into for years.  To students considering the Event Planning program, Alycia advises: “Sign up!  This program offers so much more than classroom knowledge.  The on-site events give you experience you can’t get anywhere else.”

Event Management and Leadership

In Event Management and Leadership, students will gain insight into the skills needed to be successful in a leadership role.  This course will also examine the responsibility of event leaders to address environmental issues (Green Events), ethics, risk analysis and quality of events (Service management).

CRN: 26826 / Course: CSBU155 B2
Dates: April 9 - May 7, 2019
Days: Tuesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 p.m
Site: Brockton Campus, Room: B547
Cost: $209

For all other payment types, call
508-588-9100 x1310.

About our Instructor:

Professor Karen Salhaney Smizer is a recognized and highly creative professional with over 20 years of experience in event & marketing management, corporate sponsorships, and nonprofit development. Since 2008, Karen has thoroughly enjoyed sharing her knowledge so that her students can develop critical skills and first hand industry experience so to confidently step out into the event-planning world.  She has helped create many strong industry partnerships in the Boston area for the benefit of the Event Planning program and its students.

Co-founding Event Avenue, LLC, an event and meeting management firm, she produced award winning industry expos & conferences, corporate meetings, galas, weddings, sporting tournaments, and fundraising events throughout the country.

While earning her Masters with a focus on Nonprofit Management from Eastern University, she served as the Senior Director of Development & Special Events for a nonprofit organization where she directed over 25 events and marketing initiatives annually, raising millions.  She’s known for her innovative vision, a “can do” attitude and a knack for building team camaraderie and developing long lasting relationships. 

She remains active in her community by serving in leadership roles for various nonprofits and has served on the board of her Alma Mater, Emmanuel College in Boston.  She continues to help develop the next generation of event and meeting professionals through mentoring and frequent speaking engagements, which have included Associated Fundraising Professionals International Special Events Society, schools and organizations.

In 2015, her students were awarded with the Best Event Table Design with the International Special Events Society of New England. 

Withdrawal and Refund Information

To withdraw, you can visit the Registrar’s Office in Brockton, the Enrollment Center in Canton, or the main Office in Middleborough. Alternatively, you can: (1) send an email from your Massasoit email account to Registrar's Office email requesting withdrawal, or (2) send a fax to 508-427-1246 with your printed and signed name requesting withdrawal.

Withdrawals before the start of the first class are granted a 100% refund. Withdrawals after the first class are refunded 0-50% depending on the length of the course.

Parking Decals

There are designated parking lots available for students; however, a parking decal is required. If you do not have a decal, visit the Massasoit campus police with your drivers license, car registration and proof of course registration to complete a form and obtain your decal.


Kelley Tilden

Director of Community Education
Tel: 508-588-9100 x1310
Fax: 508-427-6532

Paul Key

Associate Director of Community Education
Tel: 508-588-9100 x1312
Fax: 508-427-6532


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