Conference centers represent a distinct, highly complex segment of the global meetings industry, and managers face unique challenges requiring appropriate skills and training.
To help address the needs of this growing hospitality and tourism sector, the NYU School of Professional Studies Tisch Center for Hospitality and Tourism will launch a new Certificate in International Conference Center Management this spring, one of the first noncredit certificate programs that specifically focus on international conference center management.
“We wanted to develop a curriculum that would serve the educational and training needs of both industry veterans and those seeking to begin their careers,” said Donna Quadri-Felitti, clinical associate professor and academic chair, NYU School of Professional Studies Tisch Center for Hospitality and Tourism. “Our collaboration with IACC is a prime example of how our programs align themselves with industry.”
Developed in consultation with the International Association of Conference Centres (IACC), the new certificate complements existing Tisch Center programs that span the hospitality industry, including Hotel Operations, Restaurant Operations, and Conference and Meeting Management. IACC, which boasts a membership of over 350 venues worldwide, has been a longtime supporter of Tisch Center students — providing a $5,000 scholarship each year to a student within the undergraduate or graduate program since 1999.
“The collaboration with the NYU School of Professional Studies made so much sense to us as we scanned the marketplace for a provider to work with us on developing a conference center specific program, which could be offered on a global basis. Our relationship with the team at the Tisch Center goes back many years, and we value the opportunity to help them develop this program, which will be the first of its kind,” said Peter Stewart, global president, IACC.
The six-course certificate uses cutting-edge technology and will be offered online in an asynchronous format that will allow students from anywhere in the world to complete the program. The required courses include Foundations of Conference Center Management and Operations; Human Resource Practices and Techniques; Financial and Legal Frameworks; and Current Issues in Conference Center Operations. Electives offered are Prospecting and Sales Strategies for Conference Centers and Event Venues; New Technologies for the Meetings and Conference Industry; and Marketing and Positioning Strategies for Meetings, Events, and Conferences.
Academic Chair Quadri-Felitti also noted that students will employ a global lens to evaluate common business issues, including decisions about ownership structures and day-to-day operations; supervising a diverse workforce in a service industry; ethical issues and risk assessment; business development, and marketing and positioning; identifying and deploying technology to modernize service offerings; and developing a strategic vision to ensure long-term success.