Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Now Teaching at Austin Community College

An article from Austin Community College

The Big Day is big business

Wedding Rings

You can’t flip through the cable channels these days without coming across an episode of “Bridezilla” or “Whose Wedding Is It Anyway?”

The wedding planning industry is booming, and Austin Community College is taking part. For the first time this semester, the college is offering a class in which students can become certified wedding planners.

Wedding AssistantThe program was met with immediate success. “It’s almost full,” says Addie Kellington, Continuing Education Program Coordinator. “Everybody seems really happy with it.”

Community Programs Director Sharrion Jenkins arranged for the class. The Wedding Planning Institute, a division of Lovegevity Inc., provides the instructor and course materials.

During a recent class, the students listened attentively to instructor Wendee Robbins, an event planner for nearly 10 years. Robbins described possible scenarios such as the groom forgetting his boutonniere, or the florist not arriving on time to deliver it. The planner could take a flower from the bride’s bouquet, or just go without.

“There’s no right or wrong answer,” she told the class. “It’s being able to think on your feet.”

Wedding planners are expected to know every aspect of the business, from engagement rings to what colors will best complement the bride’s skin tone. Not every wedding planner will shop with the bride, however. Planners offer different packages, whether it’s day-of-wedding services or coordinating with the couple sometimes years in advance.

Wedding planners also work with caterers, photographers, and several other vendors, so good marketing and business skills are also taught in the class.

Student Kathryn Hawkins, along with her sister, enrolled in the program because they enjoy planning family events such as birthdays and reunions. Hawkins said she likes the class very much.

“I’m so engulfed that it’s hard to sleep. I’m constantly thinking about ideas,” Hawkins says. “I’m really enjoying it.”

The Continuing Education Division will offer wedding planning classes each semester. Click here for more information.