Elaine here, from the Choose Lansing sales and services team. I've spent nearly the last year working towards earning my Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) designation. It's a nationally recognized exam that is essentially the gold standard in our industry. It requires studying, hospitality experience, and a year of preparation, but it's absolutely worth it. Here's a look at my experience!

A Choose Lansing team member stands at a podium to speak during a meeting.

CMP Eligibility

The first step to getting your CMP designation is sending an application that demonstrates your eligibility. You must have prior hospitality experience and/or education. For me, the application process involved sending transcripts from my hospitality program at CMU, after which I waited about a month for my application to be accepted. 

Gearing Up for Success

Once approved, you get a study package that includes two hefty textbooks and a glossary. The Events Industry Council (EIC) provides the textbooks, while the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) provides the glossary and offers a treasure trove of online resources, including flashcards, quizzes, and other study materials. 

I spend up to 20 hours a week studying, in addition to reading each book twice, mastering formulas, and truly immersing myself in the world of event planning. One of my favorite resources for studying has been an app called Pocket Prep, which is great for making and studying flash cards on-the-go for any accredited exam.  

Learning from the Best

Speaking of resources, I can't recommend the MSAE x MMPI prep course enough for Michigan-based meeting planners. It's a 15-week program with industry veterans – actual CMPs! – teaching you the ropes. They break down each exam domain (domains cover topics like strategic planning, financial management, event design), and it's a great way to get valuable insights from seasoned professionals.

The Exam

The exam itself is a 165-question beast covering eight core areas. It's proctored, meaning you'll take it at a designated testing center (luckily, there's one in Lansing!). You'll find lots of options for exam dates, and fantastic customer service if you have any scheduling questions.

Continue Learning!

The CMP isn't just a one-time feat. To maintain your certification, you'll need to renew it every five years with continuing education credits. This means you get to stay on top of the latest trends and industry best practices – a win-win!

Why the CMP Matters

Obtaining your CMP designation is an investment, both financially and in terms of time, but the payoff is huge. It validates my expertise, and it also helps me better understand the needs of meeting and event planners who Choose Lansing for events.

Choose Lansing's sales and services team at the Breslin Center.

Certified Meeting Professionals at Choose Lansing

Here at Choose Lansing, you'll find a team of dedicated sales and service professionals, most of whom are Certified Meeting Professionals. This means you get to work with planners who not only understand the industry inside-out, but who are also committed to ongoing professional development.

So, are you planning a meeting in the greater Lansing area? Connect with our CMP-certified experts today! We'll leverage our knowledge and experience to help you create your best event yet.

Photo credit: Choose Lansing

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