Students’ event success raises thousands of pounds for charity

Posted on 8th April 2014

Events Management students from the University of Chester are celebrating after raising nearly £8,000 for charity. 

The Red Bird Events team who organised Fiesta de Salsa.
The Red Bird Events team who organised Fiesta de Salsa.
This is a great course for enabling students to gain real practical experience of the industry. It can be tough at times but also hugely rewarding
Tim Brown

Around 80 second year students studying Events Management were placed in small groups and tasked with creating, developing, planning and delivering a fundraising event on behalf of a range of local and national charities as part of their studies.

During January to March, 16 events were undertaken across Chester and Warrington. The events ranged in style and scale including a Salsa Dance Class at the Red Door, Chester, where guests learnt the basics of salsa before being given free rein of the dance floor; a Dinner in the Dark, where guests ate blindfolded in aid of the charity Sense and an art and photography exhibition, where members of the public could enter their art work for display and prizes, hosted at the Handel’s Court Gallery. Other events included a dodgeball tournament, a fashion show, a children’s activity day, a communi-tea and a fitness festival! The charities benefiting included Miles of Smiles, Live!, NSPCC, Hospice of the Good Shepherd, Macmillan Cancer Research and Hope House Children’s Hospices.

In total £7,800 was raised for these charities, with over 1,100 guests attending these events. The event groups were provided with no funding and were expected to plan, market and sell their events diligently, ensuring that they at least broke even or make a profit for the charity – which all groups achieved.

Events Management has become one of the fastest growing and popular courses in the UK in the last few years. It provides students with a great range of transferable industry skills that can be utilised in not only the events industry, but also those of marketing, tourism, business, education and management. The University of Chester is currently ranked 1st in the North West for its Events Management programme by the Complete University Guide 2014. The Events Management lecturers work with a range of local, regional and national companies to ensure that the Events Management course is up to date. They also provide students with practical and transferable skills and a wide range of ‘real’ industry events, on which to work or volunteer. All of these opportunities add huge value and experience to the students’ learning and development.

Francesca Bateman, who was part of the group Elite Events which raised £756 for the Hospice of the Good Shepherd, said: “This was an amazing module to do. We all had to work hard as a team, overcome various business problems, encourage members of the public to enter the art competition, and deliver a first class event. It was a really tough process but also the most exciting thing I have done at University so far. I’d happily do it all over again!”

Zara Rimmer, from the Defined Events group, said: “It was an exciting project to do. Our event ran for over three days making it difficult to keep energy levels high, but we ensureda good customer experience. It provided a real insight into what will happen when I work in the events industry.”

There was also a direct economic impact to the local region from the undertaking of these events. Through the purchase of equipment, decorations, venue hire, staff hire and from the spending power of the attendees, over £15,000 has been invested, benefitting all those involved.

Tim Brown, Senior Lecturer in Events Management, said: “This is a great course for enabling students to gain real practical experience of the industry. It can be tough at times but also hugely rewarding. We are delighted with quality of all the events this year and the huge benefits paid to such a wide ranging number of charities. We are already looking at how to improve on this for next year.”