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Member’s Perspective: Reflections on my first year as a MPI member

MPI Toronto Chapter On March 14, 2018

Janni Hjorth Janni Hjorth Kristensen 
Cofounder of HÄNGAR Travel 

In my first year as a MPI member I have experienced great membership benefits that have been very beneficial to my professional development. 

I joined MPI in January 2017 after great encouragement from my lecturer and academic mentor Dr. Julie Whitfield. I vividly remember my very first lecture in events management at Bournemouth University with Julie, as she told me and fellow students: If you’re serious about the meetings industry join MPI! She went on to emphasize the value of being part of a professional community and stressed the importance of building professional networks while still in school – As a lecturer that really pushes her students to go straight into fulltime employment post-graduation, she kept repeating this. 

Joining MPI did turn out to be one of the best decisions I made while pursuing my master’s degree, and especially two events have played a great part in my professional development. Participating in the 2017 future leader’s forum and volunteering as a strategic element in relocating to Canada after my graduation.  

I received a grant to participate in the 2017 Future leader’s forum and subsequent European Meeting and Events Conference in Granada, Spain. As this was the first time for me joining a bigger MPI event with more than 359 participants, 30 education sessions and a 3 day packed conference program. Taking part in the future leader’s forum was an important part of the conference as it gave me an opportunity to connect with other students, receive coaching from industry leaders and strategically plan for the following networking sessions. 

The future leaders program is designed for students who want to further their careers in the meetings and events industry, and it was a great opportunity to learn more about the industry, while also making professional contacts.For me the main benefits were: 

  • Meeting peers 
  • Strategically managing networking
  • Connecting with industry leaders 
The future leader’s forum presented a valuable opportunity for me to develop my networking skills and increasing my professional network while still in university.

In September 2017 I graduated with a master’s degree in events management and I moved From England to Canada. Fresh of the plane from Europe my network in North America was pretty limited, to say the least! However I had the opportunity to join Toronto communication committee, where I currently volunteer along a variety of very skilled events professionals to publish the meetings magazine. 

As I had arrived in Toronto without a job and a newly started business, volunteering for MPI was a great opportunity for me to connect with individuals in the industry while developing my professionally skills in marketing and PR. 

Based on my own membership experience I very much encourage anyone to seek out the great scholarship and volunteering opportunities that MPI offer. No matter if you have relocated or you’re on home ground. Using your MPI membership strategically can support you in your professional development and ensure you achieve your goals in the meetings industry. 


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