EDUCATION IN CONGRESS TOURISM

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Edukacija u kongresnom turizmu 01Education in Congress Tourism on Faculties

“Since 2008, with a new concept and extra faculty’s staff in Tourism & Hospitality Management Department, we have managed to dedicate an entire segment to meeting industry within lectures and exercises in the subjects such as Marketing in Tourism and Management of Tourism Enterprises, where students are introduced to the internationally acknowledged principles of meeting industry, as well as case studies”, says Bojan Zečević, PhD, the Faculty of Economics in Belgrade. He states that since 2007 master students have been introduced to the strategic framework of event organization within the subject Event Management and Marketing. “It is necessary to stress that our department staff are the owners of internationally recognised certificates in meeting industry awarded by the global associations (ICCA, DMAI), and in their research and academic function the students really do know how to embrace it and take advantage of it”, Zečević says.

In Geography, Tourism & Hotel Management Department within the Faculty of Sciences in Novi Sad, the undergraduate students may choose the subject Meeting Industry (since 2006), and master students may opt for the subject Event Management (since 2007). Approximately 40 students are interested in these subjects per year. Tatjana Pivac, PhD and Vanja Dragićević, PhD point out that starting from the next year they will have several subjects addressing events: Cultural Event Management, Business Event Management, Sports Event Management and Special Event Management.

The Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality in Ohrid, the Republic of Macedonia (as a part of St. Kliment Ohridski University of Bitola) has offered undergraduate studies with the subject Organization of Congresses and Meetings (since 2008). Ivanka Nestoroska, a professor at FTH Ohrid, says that it is a compulsory subject in study programmes Hotel & Restaurant Edukacija u kongresnom turizmu 02Management and Gastronomy, and an optional subject in the study programmes Tourism. She adds that about 30% of students on average choose this subject. In the graduate studies, Tourism Department, there is Event Management as an optional subject (since 2008), chosen by some 20% of enrolled students.

“Students are very interested in MICE Tourism subject. It is an optional subject opted for by as many as 80% of students on average. Two thirds of the semester is dedicated to theoretical study of fundamentals, but also to the latest achievements in MICE industry, while one third is dedicated on mandatory basis to acquiring practical experience”, says Assistant Lecturer, Ana Tripković Marković, PhD, the Faculty of Tourism in Bar, Montenegro. She points out that they have an excellent cooperation with local representatives in MICE industry who are always glad to be visiting lecturers for these students. “Also, when doing their final paper, the students have an opportunity to learn everything about what meeting industry clients require on the one hand, and what Montenegro as a MICE destination has to offer on the other”, Marković concludes.

Prof. Dr. Sc. Denisa Krbec, Jurja Dobrile University in Pula, Economics and Tourism Department, says that the topics in this field are studied through an intense cooperation with business partners in tourist sector in form of seminars and/or practical trainings.

In Slovenia, the University of Primorska, the Faculty of Tourism in Portorož, also records high student interest which grows on the annual basis. “The Faculty tries, in addition to theoretical studies, to send the best students for trainings to Convention Bureau, PCO and DMC agencies, or hotels and convention centres”, says Marijana Sikošek, MA. The subject Congress Management has been present as independent since 2006 within the studies in Tourist Destination Management and Management of Tourism Enterprises.

The SEE faculties feature quite a narrow selection of subjects, departments or modules addressing meeting industry directly. The knowledge that comes closest to meeting industry can be found at faculties containing the tourism and hospitality department, which includes the subject Event Management, Organization of Conventions and Meetings, Tourist Enterprise Management or Destination Management. Only few regional faculties offer meeting industry or MICE industry independently and if so, they are normally optional subjects. Apart from that, there is also a question of what kind of program and content hide behind a certain title of a subject.

Edukacija u kongresnom turizmu 03Plans for Education in Congress Tourism in Future

“What we can actually expect is to address meeting industry within specialist and master studies. In next few years, the Faculty will focus specifically on introducing new subjects and up-to-date approach to subjects in tourism. It is necessary to point out that the title of department or subject cannot give the students any guarantee of quality of what they learn and that is the reason why we insist on the program content – what is it they learn, how relevant is it, is it applicable at the international level, and most of all, is there anyone to learn it from?”, says Bojan Zečević, PhD, the Faculty of Economics in Belgrade.

“The focus will be on introducing content in this field as much as possible into the existing subjects in undergraduate, master and PhD studies. It should be also complemented with the 3rd– and 4th-year students’ professional engagement lasting at least two months and including either their direct or indirect working in meetings industry. All this testifies that even with the absence of a separate department or subject, this field is being comprehensively covered by several diverse teaching activities”, says Professor Jovan Popesku, PhD, Singidunum University, the Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management.

Svetislav Milenković, PhD, and a professor at the Faculty of Economics in Kragujevac says that for now there is no possibility to launch a separate meeting industry department, but he insists that it would be very interesting since Kragujevac, as a university city, has been growingly developing into a meeting industry centre.

List of faculties in the region

Below are the regional faculties with departments including the subject(s), for which professors from these faculties stated that have themes about congress tourism (Note: For the information about departments and subjects we have contacted the faculties and used their websites as relevant sources).

FACULTY

DEPARTMENT

SUBJECT

SERBIA

Faculty of Economics, University of Belgrade

Tourism and Hospitality Management

Marketing in Tourism

Management of Tourism Enterprises

Event Management and Marketing

Faculty of Sciences, University of Novi Sad

Geography, Tourism and Hotel Management

Meeting Industry

Event Management

Faculty for Tourism and Hospitality Management, University Singidunum Belgrade

Tourism and Hospitality Management

Thematic Tourism

Tourist Destination Management

Hospitality Management

Travel Agencies and Tour Operators Management

Faculty of Economics, University of Kragujevac

Study program for Economy

Economics in Tourism

Tourism and Environment

Tourist Destination Management

Tourism and Agrobusiness

MONTENEGRO

Faculty of Tourism Bar, University Mediterranean

Tourism Management

Hospitality Management

MICE Tourism

Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Kotor, University of Montenegro

Tourism

Selective Tourism

CROATIA

Faculty of Economics, University of Zagreb

Tourism

Specific Forms of Tourism

Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management Opatija, University of Rijeka

Tourism

Tourist Destination Management

Specific Forms of Tourism

Event Planning

University of Zadar

Tourism and Communication Sciences

Specific Forms of Tourism

Faculty of Economics, University of Split

Tourism and Hospitality Management

Event Management

University of Jurja Dobrile, Pula

Economics and Tourism

Economics in Tourism

Marketing in Tourism

Selective Tourism

Event Tourism and Public Relations

SLOVENIA

Faculty of Tourism Studies – Turistica, University of Primorska, Portorož

Tourist Destination Management

Management of Tourism Enterprises

Congress Management

MACEDONIA

Faculty for Tourism and Hospitality Management Ohrid, University St. Kliment Ohridski – Bitola

Hotel and Restaurant Management and Gastronomy

Study Program for Tourism

Organizing of Conferences and Meetings

Event Management

Education in Meeting Industry at Conferences and Seminars

Lectures and education directly related to meeting industry as most adequate can be so far found in form of specialised conferences and training seminars held in our region.

In Serbia, EIAT conference is held once a year for students and the industry, where lecturers are the prominent experts in these fields. Some of them are Rob Davidson, Rick Taylor, Mady Keup.

In Croatia, there are multi-day seminars held where the lecturer is Linda Pereira, one of the leading experts and lecturers in meeting industry.Edukacija u kongresnom turizmu 04

Career Improvement in Meeting Industry

If you have any experience in event organization or you work in meeting industry, you can benefit from the internationally recognised title of CMP (Certified Meeting Planner).

The Convention Industry Council (CIC) launched the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) program in 1985 to enhance the knowledge and performance of meeting professionals, promote the status and credibility of the meeting profession and advance uniform standards of practice.

Today, more than 12,000 individuals in 34 countries have earned this designation, which is based on professional experience and a rigorous examination. A CMP designation shows that an individual is dedicated to the profession; it also conveys expertise in planning, managing and executing successful meetings and events.

Examinations are typically scheduled two times each year (spring and winter) and also during the IMEX Show held annually in Frankfort, Germany.

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Miona Milic
More than 10 years in events industry, as a project manager, content developer, offline and internet marketing campaigns, event manager for SEEbtm party, Editor-in-Chief of SEEbtm magazine… Professionalism, constant learning and personal, such as business upgrading, finds essential for success. Creativity in all fields is very important to her. Love to be physically active, travel, meet people and have a good time. But, beside everything, the greatest accomplishment and most important thing for her is being a MOM.

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