8 December 2009

An understanding of the industry, a network of contacts and work experience are the keys to claiming a dream job in event management.

Just ask The University of Queensland student and Taringa resident Deborah Lonne.

The 22-year-old finished a month-long placement at Brisbane Marketing as part of her event management studies at UQ’s School of Tourism and walked straight into a full-time job there.

Miss Lonne will now finish her studies part-time while working in Brisbane Marketing’s Conventions Bureau, helping to attract conferences and business events to the city.

"It is slightly different to what I originally envisioned I would get into, but it is even more fun than what I ever thought I would have,’’ she said.

Miss Lonne started her event management studies because it would allow her to be creative and use a wide range of skills.

"I thought I would be doing something different every day. I am open to things and open to change. I would definitely say I am going to stay in event management.

"I have worked in hospitality and been involved in functions and events and enjoyed it.’’

She said both her studies and her work experience played a part in her gaining employment in event management.

"The UQ degree is extremely useful. It gives you a broad overview of everything in the field you could work in. Each subject caters to a different aspect of the industry and teaches students the skills and competencies required to succeed in the real world.

"It also gives you contacts. UQ’s Meet the Industry Leaders Event was really important. It opens doors for you.’’
Work experience, placements or jobs on the side were also beneficial, Miss Lonne said.

"A lot is learned on the job. Get as much work experience as possible. Do volunteer work. It is part of the reason I got this job.’’

Miss Lonne said her dream job was working on a lavish international fundraising event, preferably with a theme.

"I like doing things with a theme involved. I would love to do something international where there are lots of different cultures involved.’’

Media: Deborah Lonne (3006 6271, 0401 009 953) or Erik de Wit (0417 088 772)