CoEM Sydney graduates pose for the camera at the grad venue.

CoEM Sydney graduates

Q & A with CoEM Grad Alannah Gatt

CoEM graduate Alannah can be described as the best kind of all-rounder. A creative soul by nature but more than able to focus on the many details that go into an event. It’s all very well to spend $100K on decorations if there’s not enough food, beverage or amenities for attendees! Let’s just say she has a good combination of creativity but is very well grounded in the why’s and how’s of an event too. Read on to find out what it takes to have the right style for a career in events.


Alannah was doing well in the retail world but had aspirations to do more in her professional life. “I knew I always wanted to do event planning and styling. But I had to find the right course that led me to what I needed while also doing something that suited my lifestyle and allowed me to work in between to still earn an income. I was petrified to start a university degree that I knew was not for me so started looking elsewhere.

Once I found CoEM, I was convinced that it would open the doors for me to so many opportunities in this crazy industry and provide me with a schedule that suited me. I’m happy to say that I was right!

Study experience

Alannah became immersed in the Event Manager program and found the ‘on campus’ sessions really stimulating. “On top of the course content, we were introduced to so many industry experts who provided us with their own personal knowledge and stories. We got to experience many site visits to venues and events that also added that extra experience.”

The course helped me with my time management skills, organisational, planning and styling which is an area I really wanted to wrap my head around. I gained a substantial amount of knowledge and and practical experiences through the different aspects within the events industry.

Career transition

Alannah has now completed her career transition into the events world and is currently loving life as an event planner and stylist at Honey Lane Events, a small Sydney based organisation who describe themselves as ‘Planners, designers and stylists of incredible celebrations’. “In regards to Honey Lane, the job description asked for someone “who is not afraid to get their hands dirty”. This was perfect for me as I believe you need to get your hands dirty to deliver the most stunning projects and for me that’s my favourite part about the events industry.”

Professional shot of CoEM grad Alannah with her work colleagues sitting on a sofa smiling at that camera

Alannah with the Honey Lane team – photo credit Killa Kreative

Exposure to industry

That love of being part of the set up phase of events is reflected by the amount of hours Alannah clocked up as part of her course. “The industry engagement program provided me with such invaluable experience to my theoretical and practical knowledge of the events industry that I will take on with me into my career for the rest of my life.”

As part of our Industry Engagement Program Alannah worked on events such as:

  • The Other Art Fair with Saatchi
  • Mumbrella’s Travel Marketing Summit
  • Midnight Mafia with Mothership Events
  • The Emerald Ball for Westmead Children’s Hospital
  • 9 To Thrive and An Evening with Liane Moriarty with Business Chicks
  • Adobe Symposium and the Audi Dealership Awards with Belle Laide Events.

But a particular favourite was Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. “Working at the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week was one event I will not forget. The entire atmosphere was exactly what I’ve always dreamt of. I also love working with Business Chicks, their events are so thriving and full of energy it almost feels like you’re not working at all.”

Like most graduating students Alannah is quick to acknowledge the importance of industry exposure

I would advise you to put your hand up to any event experience you can. This will provide you with so much extremely helpful practical training, and of course you never know who you are going to meet along the way.

The future

“One day I would love to start my own bespoke event planning and styling company. The reason I love events is this: the moment your event comes to life and all your initial blood sweat and tears fade away because each individual person’s smile count for all that hard work.”

Montage of three images showcasing summer themed event styling

Honey Lane styling – photo credit Honey Lane events

Students that graduate from College of Event Management are job-ready! Check out our Event Manager Program

Event Manager focuses on real event outcomes. Online content is aligned with the most widely recognised skills and mindsets required by industry, some of which we covered in the above post.

Leave a Reply