Organizers of IMEX America announced September 17 that 76 percent of the professional education on offer at this year’s show will be industry accredited. This adds further authority and value to the show’s free-to-attend education program, which surrounds the core appointment-driven trade show.
The Convention Industry Council qualified 76 percent of the show’s 180 education sessions for continuing education hours, which means IMEX America participants can accrue points or clock hours toward CMP exams or recertification while attending sessions.
ISES accreditation. In addition, the International Special Events Society (ISES) a relatively new education partner for the show, also approved 34 of the show’s education sessions for its ISES Core Curriculum. ISES Approved is the new international education standard selected for the creative event professional, and has been developed to recognize specific content that has significance for the creative event industry.
MPI education. MPI, the show’s strategic partner and premier education provider, also will offer 43 education sessions during the show of which 31 will be held on Smart Monday — powered by MPI. They include daily keynotes, four deep dives and MPI’s Healthcare Meeting Compliance Certificate (HMCC) course. Approximately 81 percent of the MPI sessions offered at IMEX America are eligible for clock hours.
“As an association focused on the professional development of meeting and event professionals, we look forward to presenting the keynotes and Smart Monday, powered by MPI, again this year. The education program we developed for IMEX America covers a variety of hot topics and trends — all of which will help the show’s attendees evolve with our changing industry,” said Paul Van Deventer, president and CEO of MPI.
New education areas. The education at the show will be delivered across 11 tracks this year, with diversity, health & wellbeing and senior planner tracks new for 2014. Three new learning styles also were added to the Inspiration Center on the show floor (sponsored by Business Events Sydney), which expands the number of formats available to participants. No booking is required as all classes are offered on a drop-in basis. The new options include a Creative Zone, where the emphasis will be on facilitated “play” as a tool for unlocking creativity and business innovation; Hot Topic Tables for peer-to-peer discussions about the latest industry issues and a Meet The Expert Clinics for one-to-one consultancies with industry experts and speakers. IMEX also increased capacity by adding a second seminar theatre to the Inspiration Center. These complement the Tech Hub (sponsored by DoubleDutch), a specialized area for technology education as well as hands-on experimentation with new products, and the Sustainability Hub, powered by GMIC (Green Meeting Industry Council), which is home to all green meetings, events information and education on the show floor.
Meetings Mean Business. IMEX America also is working with the U.S. Travel Association to highlight the Meetings Mean Business Coalition (MMBC). All three of the Coalition’s Pillars — Personal Connections, Positive Business Outcomes and Building Strong Communities — are being actively promoted and supported through the show’s education program.
On Smart Monday, an Association Focus program will deliver specially crafted education and networking for up to 200 association meeting planners and senior executives. There also will be a private event for corporate meetings executive and senior corporate event planners. The Executive Meeting Forum takes place over two half-days and provides 30 or more corporate executives with a unique opportunity to update their industry knowledge and share learning with their peers, all under the guidance of experienced facilitators.
Among the hundreds of education seminars, campfires and workshops taking place this year are:
Summing up this year’s IMEX America education program, IMEX Group CEO Carina Bauer said, “Each year we strive to add more value to our education program, and we are helped enormously by having so many excellent industry partners who have a great deal of expertise to share. This year we concentrated on adding elements for senior planners in particular and on providing a wider variety of learning formats. We’ve also adapted some of our education areas to increase capacity. Post-show and year-round feedback is incredibly useful in helping us formulate and plan the right tracks so that we deliver the education that people really want to receive and find most valuable. We hope the industry is as excited about the fourth edition of IMEX America as we are….and there’s still time to register, either online or in person by just turning up when the show starts.”