If you have energy, imagination and great organisational skills, event management is the perfect career choice. With the UK events industry now worth £42.3 billion, accounting for 35% of the visitor economy and supporting 570,000 jobs, your prospects will be bright.
Skills to get you noticed
Our BA (Hons) Event Management equips you to devise and deliver professional events that will delight and impress your clients. You will build specialist skills in management, strategy, human resources, marketing and finance to ensure every aspect of your events runs like clockwork.
To keep pace with an industry which is evolving in new directions, we constantly refresh our teaching so that you are up to date with everything from advanced event technologies to the impact of economic changes.
It all adds up to a highly regarded course matching the needs of employers and putting you in prime position for a career in this fast-paced industry.
Study in a real-life events venue
Few university classrooms are as dramatic as the Devonshire Dome. This magnificent grade II* listed building, which forms the heart of our Buxton campus, hosts an action-packed programme of premier events, from banquets to wedding, conferences to exhibitions.
It is the ideal setting in which to hone your skills. You will work with our commercial team to maximise the Dome’s use as a prestige venue. The possibilities are endless: students have contributed to everything from a celebrity Hollyoaks wedding to the world’s largest cream tea event.
From our campus on the edge of the Peak District National Park, you will also get involved with many external events which help attract over 10 million visitors to the area each year. Buxton itself is rapidly becoming known as the festival capital of England.
Work experience that counts
Our BA (Hons) Event Management features exciting placement and internship opportunities so you can gain high quality practical experience, receive professional mentoring and expand your networks.
Our students have been thrilled to secure work at events like London Fashion Week, Glastonbury, Download Festival and Derby Book Festival. There could even be international opportunities, such as placements with Disney in the USA.
If you are taking the four-year course, a formal industry placement lasting nine to 12 months is compulsory between your second and final year. You will normally work as a paid employee. While placements are not compulsory on the three-year course, we support you to gain invaluable experience during your vacations, either in paid or voluntary roles.
Bring your event ideas to life
An Anti-Valentine’s Day Dinner, a Harry Potter-themed Great Hall Feast and ‘Dining in the Dark’ experiences – these are just some of the inventive events devised by our students during their course. You will help arrange prestigious University events, including graduation ceremonies and international conferences, and run fundraisers for local charities.
You could also take part in industry competitions. In 2017, high-flying student Emily Evans reached the finals of The Eventice, the industry’s top talent competition.
Badges of excellence for your CV
You will work towards a series of Events Management Badges of Excellence during your industry experience projects. These recognise your professional skills and are aligned to national occupational standards.
They cover important aspects of the job such as front-of-house planning, handling enquiries, market research, recruitment of temporary workers and supervising health and safety. The end result is your own electronic skills portfolio – an innovative way to show prospective employers you have what it takes to excel in the industry.
Broaden your outlook
Fieldtrips help you see event management in action at local hotels and restaurants, venues like Buxton Opera House and popular attractions such as the Chatsworth Christmas Market and the Ashbourne Royal Shrovetide Football match. Fieldtrips in stages one and two of your degree are included in the course fees.
Among latest residential fieldtrips was a visit to Berlin where students enjoyed tours and talks at venues including the Velodrom and the Gehry-designed AXICA forum.
We also encourage you to take full advantage of our Go Places, Go Further scheme where you can spend part of your course studying abroad and view events management from a fresh perspective.
Meet influential industry figures
Networking is essential for the modern event manager so we give you ample opportunities to make industry contacts. Our thriving links with Capita, Zibrant, Showsec and Flair Event Staffing and Management, as well as organisers of major attractions such as Buxton Festival, are your gateway to placement opportunities and employer-led projects.
Prominent guest speakers will share their experiences with you. Our latest programme featured PR and digital marketing workshops and spotlighted the management of festivals such as Wild Rumpus and Bearded Theory.
We also hold an Industry Networking Day and our students manage the Events and Hospitality Conference. These offer you chances to meet top employers who are eager to seek out fresh talent.
Raise your professional profile
We work closely with leading professional bodies such as the Institute of Hospitality, the Meetings Industry Association, the Association of Event Management Education, the National Outdoor Event Association and the Association of Festival Organisers.
Such collaborations mean you will benefit from additional resources plus opportunities to attend national conferences, networking events and guest lectures.
When you join us, you will also become a member of hosco, the world’s leading hospitality network offering access to some 30,000 graduate roles, internships and work experience opportunities from over 1,500 employers.
In addition, you can study further professional qualifications alongside your degree, such as the Personal Licence Holder award.
You will gain a strong awareness of the international nature and diversity of the event industry, along with a solid foundation of applied managerial skills. Your subject knowledge will be developed through lectures, seminars, workshops, guided study and applied practice sessions.
The course also features a wide range of work-related learning such as guest speakers, conferences, industry days, networking events, competitions, challenges and employer-led industry projects.
Throughout your studies, you will be engaged in planning, managing and evaluating events. You will also work towards our Event Management ‘Badges of Excellence’ which are aligned to national standards.
The industrial placement which forms part of the four-year course is structured, relevant and designed to improve your academic performance as well as boosting your employability. Our dedicated and well connected placement team will help you find just the right position to match your career aspirations and professional interests.
Research-based enquiry is a cornerstone of this course. You will engage with industry, the local community and teaching staff to produce valuable findings for the benefit of the sector. One example is a project to develop a new PR and digital marketing plan for CCT conference venues. Students spent 24 hours at the Hayes Conference Centre in Swanwick to immerse themselves in the way the venue is run.
Your final year culminates in an independent study or project on a theme of your choice, where you will plan, design, execute and communicate a substantial piece of intellectual work.
You'll be assessed by a variety of methods including:
- reports and plans
- oral presentations and pitches
- models and mood boards
- written tests
- case studies
- research proposals and projects
- practical running of events
- reflective essays
- experience portfolios
- annotated bibliographies
- self-audit tools
- business plans
When you graduate from the BA (Hons) Event Management, you will have a compelling mix of skills to impress potential employers – hands-on experience, high professional standards, creativity, vision and strong theoretical knowledge.
With the event management industry expanding and diversifying at a remarkable rate, you can look forward to a wealth of career opportunities in commercial, not-for-profit and public sector organisations anywhere in the world. International employers have input into our courses and are keen to recruit our ‘work-ready’ graduates.
You could secure senior roles managing:
- Exhibitions and trade shows
- Festivals and cultural events
- Music events
- Sports events
- Outdoor events
- Conferences and meetings
- Corporate hospitality
- Incentive travel
- Sponsorship, fundraising and PR campaigns
Graduate success stories
Our recent graduates have progressed to jobs such as Conference and Events Co-ordinator; Wedding and Event Planner; Corporate Partnerships Manager; Business Development Manager; Marketing Executive; and Conference and Logistics Infrastructure and Site Management Consultant.
Among our 2016 graduate cohort:
- Musician Ben Foulds has launched his own company, StreetStar Entertainment, in Greater Manchester.
- Manon Ghequiere, who brought the international foodie trend of ‘Dining in the Dark’ to Buxton during her studies with us, now works at the five-star luxury Marriott Hotel in Doha.
Take your learning to the next level
You can consider progressing to postgraduate studies in related subjects, including our own MSc Event Management which is ideal if you want to develop your leadership and management potential further or if you would like to advance to roles in academia and research.
Ongoing careers support
We’re committed to improving your employability at every stage of your studies. Our teaching staff join forces with the Careers and Employment Service to deliver workshops on subjects such as networking, CV writing and effective use of social media.
The support continues once you’ve graduated too: you are entitled to further help and guidance for up to three years after leaving the University. This includes signposting towards internships which you can undertake on completion of your degree and which often lead to job offers.
You can also take full advantage of the hosco careers network to discover opportunities and share good practice with other professionals.
† Additional information about your studies
Full-time: 3 years or 4 with placement year
Download programme specification
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.
Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.