Greenbelt Festival: A Work Experience Series: DAY ONE

You know that feeling you get of utter excitement but dread at the same time, thats what I had when I left the house this morning to start at the Greenbelt office. And understandably, because no one wants to make a fool out of themselves on their first day. I got dressed in my smartest pair of black trousers, my trusted stripped jumper, my black “business” blazer  and my work boots (due to the RAIN), looking a good brand of ‘smart, casual with a bit of London chic thrown in.’ Lets be honest I am still 18, a University student and a girl, so I wanted to look good, but not knowing if the office attire was SMART-SMART or CASUAL-CASUAL I opted to dress in-between so as not to get it too wrong. And you will be glad to hear it worked, I fitted in with the mixed array of shirts and jeans pretty darn well, not bad going for a newbie.

In regards to the actual work I performed, my role as an Intern is to offer an extra pair of hands to all who need it, and that is exactly what I did. Working alongside the Programme Team I spend my first day looking through all the artists and speakers that are confirmed to perform over the festival weekend, (26th to the 29th of August 2011 – tickets are still available), and seeing if they are on the websites line-up. I then spend the rest of the day/afternoon adding in the new bookings for the performance stage, all which will find its way to the website in due course, making sure that each artist has a bio, web links to their websites/facebook/twitter/myspace and a picture. Then adding them to the non announced list I previously made. Looking at my whole day summarised it doesn’t look like an awful lot, however if you consider I had to look through over a 150 confirmed acts to see who was on the website & then cross reverence various emails to find the relevant information you can see why this took me a whole working day to do, not that my hours were very ‘9 till 5’.

There are only 11 staff members in the office, all who were really nice and very kind. The office space is  full of interesting things, like the toy bat that sits by the stairs into the office and the posters from previous years festivals. Its a very open area with two big rooms where most of the staff sit and quite exciting atmosphere to be working in.

Tomorrow I shall update you with other interesting happenings, right now I am off to finish my book & then back to WORK.

Greenbelt Festival: A Work Experience Series

SET UP OF THE NEW “SERIES” FOR i’m a damn student, what do i know?

Tomorrow, Monday 6th of June 2011, I start my month at the Greenbelt Festival Office in Central London and I decided that it would make perfect sense to document what the experience is going to be like on this Blog. So for the next four weeks you shall be hearing first hand what it is like planning a festival.

Are you ready? Because I certainly am!

A BIT OF BACKGROUND INFORMATION 


Greenbelt is a faith, music and arts festival that takes place on the last weekend of August at the Cheltenham Racecourse, the 2011 festival will be held on the 26th to the 29th of August and shall be the 37th festival. I previously went to this festival back in 2009 and is one of the reasons I picked to go to the University of Gloucestershire, even thought I am not a christian and come from a non-faith background I found this festival to be very enriching. The festival is as much about teaching as it is about preaching and offers its doors to all.

I have no idea how the next month shall be, but I shall document the whole journey here, giving all event management students an insight into the working world of the events industry!

How to become an Event Manager: WHAT UNIVERSITY?

The last post of ‘How to…’ was a basic introduction to Events. This post however is all about University and whether it is what you should do. This was originally written on BlogByKobrak on the 12th January 2011 but has been updated to reflect on the increase in tuition fees and personal experiences. 


What I have learnt most through studying Event Management is that there is a lot to do and to take into account, when being an events planner, little things have to be done before you can move onto the next step.  In fact most of event management is the planning stage of the event rather than the operations  so forget meeting celebrities at the festivals and instead concentrate on the office and phone calls to countless different people. 

If you are thinking of studying event management at University or college, well firstly CONGRATULATIONS for knowing what you want to do and for picking such a brilliant industry! 
But onto the serious stuff, are you ready to embrace the weird hours and the ‘high’ seasons? Because this isn’t a 9 to 5 job, in fact it is anything other than that, for one of my jobs I was working 15 hours a day!

There are a lot more universities offering Event Management as a degree, either on it’s own or as a join course, It is still a new industry that is still finding its feet so experience is vital for when you graduate, and it might be better to look at universities offering a more practical course! 

Where should you apply to do event management?

This is a very important question and really in depends what you are looking for. I would firstly recommend one that offers a sandwich course (usually 4 years), because this gives you a years work placement working in the industry, which not only does it provides you with great contacts but a great opportunity to develop your skills. 

UNIVERSITY OF GLOUCESTERSHIRE 


I am at the University of Gloucestershire therefore I have to suggest it as a place to study. It is a very practical course, which I think is great as Event management is a practical job, therefore it makes less sense to take lots of exams that test your ability to remember and not you ability to do. 
This University is based in and around Cheltenham and split into three campuses, Cheltenham has a lot of festivals such as the Cheltenham Literary Festival, the Gold Cup festival and Greenbelt festival.  There are countless events that happen throughout the year in Cheltenham and Gloucestershire which makes it a great place to gain experience through volunteering and internships to keep your CV updated with relevant experience in the event industry. 

BOURNEMOUTH UNIVERSITY


I thought that Bournemouth University had a fantastic event course, & I know a few people who study here and they really love the location and find the teaching on their courses to be first rate. For obvious reasons I am unable to comment on the course but when I went to the open day they were very passionate about what they were teaching and the lecturers had a lot of experience in the industry,  they were keen on getting their students out doing work experience which is a major aspect to consider when applying to Uni.

BUCKINGHAMSHIRE NEW UNIVERSITY


Buckinghamshire New University was another one that I really likes, maybe not one of the most highly recognised Universities but the course is very practical. However you cannot just do event management you have to specialise in one of three different areas: Event and Festival Management,Corporate Events and Conference ManagementMusic and Live Event Management . This means that you need to know what area you want to work in before you take the course. The Uni is based in High Wycombe and isn’t to far from London which makes it a good location & one of my favourite things about this university was the fact you could do extra courses to add to your CV. 

UNIVERSITY OF GREENWICH 


The University of Greenwich is also a good university, however their course is much more buisness related and has a lot more exams and essays than the three above. Thats not to say it isn’t very practical, London is a fantastic place to be an Event Management student as there are a lot of companies based here and there are always events being held. Imagine being able to help at the 2012 Olympics or get to attend events at Earls Court. I’m lucky as I live just outside London and for me it is easy to travel in from home therefore I didn’t want to study so close to where I live.





I would say that picking a University isn’t easy or a quick process, especially now that tuiton fees have increased so dramatically. I only pay £3,000 (isn) per year and I doubt I would have gone if I had to pay £8,000. I hope that there is an increase of businesses that start to offer internships and training programmes for people who decide university isn’t for them.


Another piece of advice is don’t pay to much attention to the Times university list on where each university sits in the leader board, they are peoples personal opinions – instead go to lots of open days and hear each university talk about their course and what it offers you. Think of what YOU are LOOKING FOR, do you want lectures who have a lot of practical experience, a location that holds plenty of events for you to get involved in or somewhere that teaches you the practical skills?


It helps to talk to students who are currently at the university and studying the course as they will give you an honest opinion. UCAS tell you ALL of the universitys that provide Event Management courses.

GOOD LUCK IN FINDING THE UNIVERSITY THAT IS RIGHT FOR YOU


If you have any questions please either leave a comment below or send me a tweet @Imdamnstudent @blogbykobrak