Health and safety concerns loom large as planners pull together popular May events
May represents a major time of change – school years come to a close, temperatures rise, and Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer. For many of us, that means coming together with friends and family to celebrate graduations or joining colleagues for essential industry conversations at symposiums. Both event types have their hallmarks, but in the pandemic era, there are several new elements to consider during the planning phase.
For in-person graduations, it’s important to hire a dynamic, inspiring speaker for the keynote address, and it’s also crucial to iron out logistics around when and how graduates get to the stage. But the most urgent decision involves how many people to admit. Event planners must consider the COVID regulations at their institution and in their city and state, as well as the latest CDC guidance. From there, they must decide if they’ll limit attendance to graduates only, allow graduates with limited guests, or permit full attendance. Based on that decision, protocols should be defined for social distancing, COVID testing, and hygiene (e.g., access to hand sanitizer, masking, etc.).
Virtual graduation ceremonies absolve event planners of all the COVID precautions, but in turn, they must choose an event hosting platform that can accommodate the full guest list and design an interactive program that keeps people engaged throughout the entire ceremony.
Similarly, symposium planners must weigh the risks and decide if an in-person, virtual, or hybrid event is the most viable option. Aside from hygiene best practices and tech compatibility, planners must also be clear on their ultimate objectives for the event and design a lean, focused program that educates and informs while encouraging constant interaction. Even if the symposium is returning to a 100% in-person format, planners should note that the attendees (and their attention spans) have been forever changed by the last two years of Zoom calls and virtual events.
In short, there are many different paths you can travel in pulling together impactful graduations and symposiums. But more than ever, the details – and the care you show your attendees – top the list of priorities.
Let us help plan your next graduation ceremony or symposium. Contact us today to get started.
Notes from our Glow-getters
Glow Global is proud to produce Culture Shift Labs’ Culture Shifting Weekend in Silicon Valley May 19-22. Culture Shift Labs is a diversity and innovation management consultancy, and Culture Shifting Weekends are annual invite-only events that bring together Black and Latinx members of the tech community for deals, collaborations, and wealth creation. Other Culture Shifting Weekends take place in Silicon Alley and Miami.
Additionally, Glow Global CEO Cheryl Gentry will return to NYU for the Summer 2022 semester as Adjunct Professor of the course, “Virtual Events: Best Practices for Effective Digital Fundraising”. The course counts towards the completion of a Certificate in Digital Fundraising and takes place over 6 sessions. Please share this with anyone who is interested in event planning and to enroll, visit the official homepage for the program.