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Osher 50+

Meeting and Event Planning

Offered Online


CSUSM’s Professional Certificate in Meeting and Event Planning will help launch you into this exciting and rewarding field. Learn from well-known industry professionals as they share the practical tools essential to ensure that your meeting or event is a success.

Please note this program will return Fall 2021.

  • Convenient format

    This certificate program offers evening classes twice a week to accommodate your busy schedule and you have the option to take individual courses or the entire certificate program

  • Immediately applicable

    Gain strategies and resources that you can start using immediately in your current role

  • Learn from the best

    Learn from and network with experienced instructors who provide expertise, insights and real examples to help you become a better event planner

  • Range of topics

    Topics include the fundamentals of event planning, logistical planning, legal issues for planners, food and beverage, finance and budgeting, planning nonprofit events and more

Program Details


    This program is designed for:

    • Those looking to start or advance their event planning career
    • Individuals hoping to learn how to organize, manage and lead meeting and event planning services for corporations, nonprofit organizations, small businesses and similar groups
    • Wedding planners looking to increase their skills beyond weddings

    This program will return Fall 2021. Fill out the form at the bottom of the page to be notified of the next start date.

    Course Dates
    Fundamentals of Meeting and Event Planning Fall 2021
    Legal Issues for Event Planners Fall 2021
    Successful Logistical Planning Fall 2021
    Best Practices in Event Budgeting Fall 2021
    Food and Beverage Essentials Fall 2021
    Presentation and Communication Skills Fall 2021
    Planning Nonprofit Events Fall 2021
    Wedding Planning for Planners Fall 2021
    Independent Meeting Professional Fall 2021
    Project Presentations Fall  2021

    Course Details

    • Classes held at CSUSM 

    Course Textbook

    • Title: Professional Meeting Management 6th Edition
    • ISBN: # 978-1-932841-97-8
    • Can be ordered directly from the publisher at or on Amazon

    Fee Includes

    • Course materials (excluding textbooks)
    • Parking (if applicable)


    Please note: All rates are subject to change without notice.


    Core Courses

    Fundamentals of Meeting and Event Planning

    Program topics will emphasize what it takes to identify and establish a career path within the profession. Learn the foundational elements and strategic considerations needed for planning a successful event.

    Successful Logistical Planning

    Gain inside knowledge of how to build a blueprint for success by understanding ROI, targeted questioning, staging, audio-visual, labor, permits and creating value for your client.

    Food and Beverage Essentials

    Effectively managing food and beverage for an event means successfully working with many variables. Discuss the management of food and beverage events, including identifying needs, creating a budget and working with a hotel or off-premises caterer.

    Legal Issues for Event Planners

    Review case studies and learn to minimize liability. Gain a better understanding of critical contract clauses, how to resolve legal issues relating to alcohol, food and beverage, employment disputes, and what to do practically and legally if you do not get paid.

    Finance and Budgeting Essentials

    Learn to understand, create, sell, manage, and live with event budgets, including how to evaluate your budget and provide solid information to stakeholders on return on investment.

    Communication Skills for the Event Planning Professional

    This two-part class will show you how to communicate effectively to peers and clients, outline and organize an effective project presentation, improve your style of delivery, and maintain the attention of your audience.

    Project Presentations

    This is the culminating project, presented to peers and instructors. Projects will focus on planning a meeting or event from beginning to end using the information and skills learned during the program.

    Career Perspectives

    Wedding Planning for Planners

    Learn must-have skills and address the challenges of this fast-growing niche industry. Topics include bridal parties, customs/traditions, music, industry associations, networking, bridal shows, PR and more.

    Independent Meeting Professional

    Learn the obvious and not-so-obvious considerations for establishing a reputation as an industry professional who delivers quality events.

    Planning Nonprofit Events

    Nonprofit organizations are often asked to accomplish the near impossible – create a four-star event with a one-star budget. Learn how to make the most of every budgeted dollar and seek appropriate sponsorship and fundraising opportunities to offset the costs. Acquire tips on how to find and manage valuable volunteers and how to stay organized amidst the chaos.

  • FAQ

    What services do you offer to active military, veterans and dependents?

    Please visit our military and veteran services page to learn how we can help.

    What do former students say about the program?

    “I liked that the courses were taught by current industry professionals. This was a huge draw for me because I knew the information I was getting would be relevant.”

    Liliana Villanueva - Graduate; Senior Events Coordinator, Stone Brewing Co.

    Do you offer other planning programs?

I can go start my business right now if I want to, or I can turn in my résumé and say, ‘I can do this.’ I’ve learned so much.

– Toni Ramirez


– Toni Ramirez

I am working for a nonprofit and I coordinate a lot of community workshops and forums. This program really helped me with techniques and ways to organize and navigate through what we have to get done. It has definitely brought me a lot of growth professionally and now I am planning to open my own business focused on services for events.

– Selena Arellano

Graduate; CSUSM Research Assistant, National Latino Research Center

– Selena Arellano

I liked that the courses were taught by current industry professionals. This was a huge draw for me because I knew the information I was getting would be relevant.

– Liliana Villanueva

Graduate; Senior Events Coordinator, Stone Brewing Co.

– Liliana Villanueva

Request Information

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