Conference News September 2021 - Page 43

43 Industry view her team at The Zoo XYZ , is also passionate about education and helping the younger generation of eventprofs . For Placca , “ education has always been the core . How do you expect people to grow otherwise ?” she asks . “ They need to be able to understand events from the inside out .”

As a previous student , Placca understands first-hand the difficulties post-graduate eventprofs face . Despite having a degree , “ you can ’ t get a job without experience and can ’ t get experience without a job ”, so it seems like there is no winning , right ? To overcome this barrier , Placca asked herself , “ what can I do to support students while being able to give them the practical vocational skills ?”. And with that , The Zoo ’ s Level Three AQA accreditation course was born . The three-month AQA accredited course provides students with £ 2,000- £ 3,000 , giving them the practice and opportunity to “ produce , promote and evaluate their own events ”. This educational focus and implemented strategies are exactly the type of proactive groundwork we are currently seeing across the events industry and what will make a real difference to future eventprofs , at all levels .
As the only black events agency in the UK , Nadu wanted to “ extend the unified ecosystem that we built at The Zoo XYZ and expand it to more people ”, she says , which led her to launch the Association of Black Event Professionals and publish Black in the Boardroom , which is a report that explores the racial disparities in the UK events industry .
The report found that there were no black board members at 15 event trade bodies . “ I wanted to be able to shake up the industry a bit and call out the relevant people in order to move it forward to where we are now ,” she says .
Taking into account these findings , she believes “ it ’ s about the small bits of impact that everyone can do within these organisations ”, so “ lean into the conversation and lean into us , who are experienced and have a great track record , who can help you have the right conversations to start moving the dial ” she encourages . However , it ’ s important to realise that the industry is not going to change overnight , or even in five years , Placca states . But , in the long run , “ the work we do now is going to be a legacy for others down the line starting up their own events agency ”. After all , “ the more people we have , the bigger the voice , which means we can have a bigger impact across the industry ”, says Placca . Change will happen , but it will only happen gradually , and if we all work together .
Association of Black Event Professionals Despite the report ’ s diversity findings , future black eventprofs should not be deterred from wanting a career in the events industry . “ The Association of Black Event Professionals is in a position to showcase black event professionals across the board , emphasising their visibility and therefore ensuring future black eventprofs can see themselves in these positions ,” says Placca . She also hopes to see 200 venues have black events and supplier lists in a year ’ s time . In our events industry , there is a place for everyone . Although leading and running events “ is not an easy role and tends to take a lot of work ”, as an industry and a community , we can collectively share the load and
“ take on this responsibility to help grow the unified ecosystem of events ”. CN www . conference-news . co . uk