MPI Launches MPI Academy

The association is placing a major focus on education, certification programs, and experiential learning.

MPI WEC 2015 Paul Van Deventer Press Briefing

On the first full day of Meeting Professionals International's (MPI)World Education Congress (WEC) at the Moscone Center West in San Francisco, the organization announced the debut of its new MPI Academy.

The new MPI Academy will act as an entity or "umbrella" for all the education and learning experiences delivered by MPI within the industry and beyond said Paul Van Deventer, MPI President and CEO.

"We want to make sure it's easy for anyone our members to come to MPI and learn," Van Deventer explained at a press conference on Aug. 2. "We're creating an umbrella organization to house all of that - MPI Academy. It'll be a resource available to anyone who wants to come to MPI for educational and growth opportunities." 

The new MPI Academy is designed to align with current Meeting and Business Event Competency Standards (MBECS) and to deliver education for planners at a variety of levels within their careers. It will include training courses, certification programs, streaming sessions from MPI events, and webinars, as wel as the new MPI Professional Development Roadmap. The roadmap helps individuals map out their careers, pursue continuing education, and supplement their professional development.

MPI Academy is just one of a number of educationally focused programs to be launched by MPI. Most recently, the association debuted the following programs:

Meeting Essentials: This program, which is designed for novice and mid-level professionals, covers fundamental knowledge related to meetings and helps prepare them for the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) exam.

Sustainable Meeting Professional Certificate (SMPC): This intensive certificate course provides education, tools and applicable instruction to immediately begin practicing sustainable meeting planning. It is built around learning and using the Sustainable Meeting Planning Program® (SMPP®), the only sustainable meeting planning tool independently certified by iCompli Sustainability, a division of BPA Worldwide, the premier sustainable meeting planning audit firm in the U.S. for ISO 20121 and APEX/ASTM compliance. MPI delivers the program in partnership with Avila Government Services, Inc. 
Meetings and Events at Sea Certificate:  Presented in partnership with the Cruise Line International Association (CLIA), this certificate course explores the advantages of hosting events on cruise ships compared to traditional venues. 

New programs slated for release later this year include the following.:

Experiential Event Series: MPI is partnering with high-profile events in key areas such as sports, entertainment, culinary, and mega-events to provide unique and intimate education experiences. These experiences include behind-the-scenes tours and discussions and will include certificates in areas such as event production and sports event management. The first two events include the production of the Miss America Pageant in Atlantic City this September and the Epcot Food & Wine Festival in Orlando in November. 

Sustainable Practitioner Certificate (SPC): The SPC Program is an interactive training session designed for individuals wishing to focus on sustainability within the meeting and event industry and covers the basics of sustainability, how to create a sustainability policy, measurement, reporting and more. MPI is partnering with Positive Impact, a UK-based nonprofit led by incoming MPI Global Chair Elect Fiona Pelham, to deliver the courses. 

Healthcare Meeting Compliance Certificate (HMCC) Refresher: Launching in October, this webinar has been developed to keep MPI's HMCC recipients abreast of constantly changing healthcare meeting compliance regulations, cross-border compliance, and other healthcare trends. It's endorsed by Saint Louis University and is required every two years to maintain the HMCC and related seal of endorsement. 

CMP-Healthcare Certification (CMP-HC) Boot Camp: This MPI training is intended for meeting professionals working within the life sciences sector and will commence in the fall. It serves as a comprehensive, study preparation course for the CMP Healthcare Certification exam and will utilize an instructional design program that includes an implementation guide, instructor notes, participant workbook, and an app.  

Van Deventer ended his portion of the press briefing at WEC by noting, "We have a big focus on professional development. We want to be the place for anyone working in this industry to have that."