Office of Special Events
What We Do
The Office of Special Events follows an integrated marketing communications model. As a department, we bring to life Montgomery College’s brand through conferences, meetings, and events. We coordinate and direct milestone events that include commencement, College anniversaries, galas, and events that celebrate the success of our students. The Office of Special Events will assist in developing events/activities that support and enhance our institutional mission and goals, contributing to the accomplishment of objectives in academics, alumni relations, fundraising, and image building.
The Office of Special Events is a team of event planning professionals who will work closely with you to achieve your event goals through excellence in quality, service, and products. Our team of experienced event professionals’ partner with all MC departments to plan, coordinate and execute top-of-the line events. We foster collegial internal collaboration with our partners to deliver flawless events.
Planning an Event
Successful programs are the result of thoughtful planning and execution. Such programs do not rely on chance or happenstance. Often, successful programs involve a group of people working effectively together to execute a carefully organized plan. The key to successfully partnering with Special Events is to include us early in the event planning process.
We treat each MC event uniquely according to the departmental and event needs and goals. Your respective event consultant will help you strategize for your event, whether it is a departmental seminar, workshop, large-scale conference, or gala. As experts within the hospitality industry, we are knowledgeable in all aspects of event planning.
Please include Special Events in the planning process as early as possible to optimize your event outcome. We understand that the event planning can be a complex process but breaking it into five steps can make it more manageable. The first step is research, which involves gathering information on demographics and using the SWOT analysis to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. By doing this, event planners can create an event that matches the planned outcomes and reduces the risk of an unsuccessful event.
- What are the unique features or strengths of your academic event?
- What resources, expertise, or networks do you have that can contribute to the success of the event.
- What positive feedback or past successes have you receive from previous events?
- What advantages do you have in terms of location, facilities, or partnerships?
- What specific aspects of your event are highly valued by attendees or participants?
- What limitations or challenges have you faced in organizing past academic events?
- Are there any financial constraints or budget limitations that may impact the quality or scale of the event?
- Are there any logistical or operational issues that you need to address?
- Do you have sufficient resources or expertise to handle various aspects of event planning and execution?
- Are there any gaps in your event program or content that may affect the overall attendee experience?
- Are there any emerging trends or topics in your academic field that you can capitalize on for your event?
- Are there potential collaborations or partnerships with other departments and academic institutions?
- Can you leverage technology or virtual platforms to enhance accessibility or create hybrid event formats?
- Are there funding opportunities or sponsorships available to support and enhance yur event?
- Are there competing academic events that may draw attendance away from your event?
- Are there any external factors such as economic or policy changes that may impact funding or support for academic events?
- Are there any potential risks or disruptions, such as natural disasters, political instability, or public health emergencies?
- Are there challenges in engaging and retaining attendees?
Questions to Ask
- What is the compelling reason for the event?
- Where is the best venue?
- Who will benefit from the event?
- When will the event be held?
- Why must the event be held?
Answering these questions will help determine how to create an event that satisfies all elements. Creating a team of professionals can also be helpful in answering these questions and planning a successful event. We are a one-stop resource for all your event-related needs. By partnering with us from the beginning, we will work closely with you to meet your event objectives. As your event consultant, you can expect comprehensive event planning services designed to facilitate an efficient and well-planned event, including:
- Theme development
- Menu design
- Collaboration with vendors
- Vendor contract review and negotiation
- Guidance on event schedule and flow
- Resources for MC SWAG merchandise
Even if you do not tap into the resources offered by the Special Events department, please keep us informed of your initiatives. Your efforts help to provide a complete picture of activities and calendaring event activity to our various audiences. We look forward to working with you on your next event.
To request accommodations or to ensure that your event is meeting the needs for all attendees, please refer to the accessibility website.
Call or email accessibility for accommodations or assistance needs at 240-567-5058; TTY: 301-294-9672.
If you intend to show slides, a PowerPoint presentation, or a movie, you’ll need to make special arrangements An AV Equipment Request Formnew window must be submitted 10 days prior to event or program and equipment may be subject to availability.
If you wish to invite any or all members of the Montgomery College Board of Trustees to attend or to speak at your event or program, you must contact Lily Lee, Manager, Board Operations and Services in the Board of Trustees Office. In addition, you must forward all correspondence pertaining to your event including invitations, program, and script information prior to the event.
MCTV will use their seal, appropriate for television production, during filming of events/programs if requested.
Contact the theatre manager directly for reservations. There are separate forms for external and internal requestsnew window.
The Communications creative team is the College’s resource for your communications needs, from creative strategies and brainstorming to copywriting, editing, proofreading, art directing, printing, signage, and digital communications, to name just a few of the services they offer. Visit their website for more information and to submit service requests.
Publicize your announcements, news, student activities, open captioned videos, campus-generated content and events, including gateway signage requests. Find the information you need on how to access and use digital displays.
Emergency management ensures the MC community is prepared for any emergency, including inclement weather and is responsible for emergency planning efforts college-wide to help support and foster a safe and prepared Raptor community. Closures and delays will be detailed on this site as well as MC Alert.
When used on a speaker’s platform, the flags, if displayed flat, should be displayed above and behind the speaker. When displayed from a staff in a public auditorium, the flag of the United States of America should hold the position of superior prominence, in advance of the audience, and in the position of honor at the speaker’s right as he or she faces the auditorium. Any other flag so displayed should be placed on the left of the speaker or the right of the audience.
Maryland Flag Protocolnew window
Metz Culinary Management offers comprehensive catering services for College meetings, dinners, breakfasts, and special events. They also offer concessions including soft drinks, hot drinks, beer and wine service, candy, cookies, chips, and more for sale at your program or event.
MCTV’s award-winning production team, a component of the Office of Communications, produces educational programs that highlight the best of Montgomery College as well as television promotion and coverage of College events. Consult with the MCTV team for technical advice on how you can go forward and achieve your project's goals without the need for hands-on support.
The College photographers serve the entire College community and receives multiple requests daily. Requests must be submitted to RequestPhotos@motgomerycollege.edu at least 3-4 weeks in advance of your event or deadline. For more information, visit the website.
If participation of the President, attendance or speaking role is requested for an event, the request form needs to be submitted by the individual/office making the request. Please allow ample notice for your request. You will be notified of the president's availability directly from the Office of the President.
To request the Raptor at your event, please submit the request form well in advance of your event.
The Montgomery College shuttle service (PDF, ) runs on weekdays when classes are scheduled. The schedule shows departure times only. In case of inclement weather with a delayed opening, the service will begin with the first run, that is within thirty minutes of the posted opening time.
For all internal space reservations, setups, and service requests, contact the facilities helpdesk on the respective campus. Please remember to put in your workorder requests early to have any items that need be transported to/from your event.
For all external requests from the community and groups outside of the college, please contact the community use scheduler for the campus you would like to use.
- Event planning checklist (PDF, )
- Briefing template (PDF, )
- Budget template (PDF, )
- Seat sign template (PDF, )
- Timeline template (PDF, )
- Sample invitation (PDF, )
- Sample nametag (PDF, )
- Sample short program/short script (PDF, )
- Sample staff assignments – short version (PDF, )
- Sample staff assignments – extended version (PDF, )
Review the Procurement procedures before making any purchases or requesting an external service. Contact the purchasing agent assigned to the commodity you are requesting for questions. W-9’s are required from all vendors to be added into Workday.
- Procurement Quick Guide (PDF, )
- Procurementnew window
- Procurement Staffnew window
- Vendor Guidenew window
Metznew window has exclusivity that would have to be waived by the catering manager or Director of Auxiliary Enterprises. Please do not engage with an external vendor without checking with Metz first.
Metz Culinary Managementnew window
Bean Bag Deli and Cateringnew window
Canapes Cateringnew window
Carmen’s Italian Ice Cateringnew window
Corner Bakery Cateringnew window
High Point Events and Cateringnew window
Panera Bread Cateringnew window
Mission BBQ Cateringnew window
Saint Germaine Cateringnew window
Smokey Glen Farmnew window
Metz can provide basic linens through Catertrax. For extended choices and sizes, contact
an external source. The Office of Special Events does not have linens or branded tablecloths.
Party Rental Ltd.new window
There’s always something happening at Montgomery College, visit our calendars to stay connected.
- Academic Calendarnew window
- Events Calendar new window(*Please note that this calendar and the events listed are not managed by the Office of Special Events)
- Federal Holidays 2023new window
- Federal Holidays 2024new window
This calendar of religious, national and community holidays has been prepared to assist you in planning activities. Educators are reminded that students must be given excused absences to meet their religious obligations and that reasonable accommodations must be made for students to make up any missed work. Please be sensitive about scheduling special events so that students and employees do not miss significant activities and opportunities because of such excused absences. During major Jewish holidays, work is traditionally prohibited and Jewish individuals may be absent from both school and places of employment. No person should be penalized for his/her religious observances or beliefs.
Meet The Team
- Elizabeth F. Thomas – Director of Special Events
- Kima A. Earl – Associate Director of Special Events
- Stacey D. Miller – Associate Director of Special Events
Elizabeth's background and skills make her a seasoned professional in the event industry, with a strong ability to manage diverse events and create visually stunning experiences. With over 25 years of experience across different institutions including New York University and American University, her ability to manage and direct various types of special event programs, from donor recognitions and academic achievement events to employee recognition and milestone celebrations demonstrates her range. Encompassing a wide spectrum of events, from corporate and academic to non-profit and social gatherings, her successful collaboration with various stakeholders such as students, faculty, staff, volunteers, and alumni highlights her exceptional communication and organizational skills.
Elizabeth's time working on prestigious accounts at the U.S. White House, House of Representatives, Library of Congress, Pentagon, and U.S. Military highlights her expertise in managing high-profile clients. Her focus on aligning programs and initiatives with intentional objectives and priorities shows her strategic mindset and dedication to achieving organizational goals.
Elizabeth is dedicated to continuous learning and professional development that further solidifies her expertise in the event industry and related fields. Her certifications include: Certified Meeting Professional (CMP), Virtual Event & Meeting Management Specialist, Event & Conference Management Specialist, and Interior Design Certified.
Outside of her professional life, Elizabeth has a creative side, evident in her interest in the arts, fashion, and residential design. Her passion for making spaces "beautiful" and her love for aesthetic cohesion highlights her commitment to creating memorable and visually appealing experiences.
She has a desire to resume traveling abroad and cure her enthusiasm for exploring new cultures and gaining inspiration from different parts of the world.
Kima is a dynamic professional with over 25 years of diverse experience. Her ability to seamlessly integrate her expertise in academia, event planning, and technology has led to the successful execution of numerous projects, highlighting her talent for cross-disciplinary collaboration. Throughout her career, she has excelled in various roles within three divisions at Montgomery College, showcasing adaptability, versatility, organizational skills and creativity, successfully orchestrating memorable and impactful events. She holds an AA degree from Montgomery College and a BS degree in Information Technology from UMGC. She enjoys spending time with her family and new puppy.
Stacey has always loved the art of planning and has enjoyed an extensive career in creating perfect spaces and places for stakeholders and their guests. Using her diverse skills and talent throughout her journey in special events has been key to her success in her work to support individuals, non-profit organizations, corporate entities, and educational institutions. A natural communicator Stacey easily connects with others and has built a strong community of colleagues, business partners, industry experts, and members of the community. A lifelong learner, she continues to refine and broaden her knowledge of special events through her connections with International Live Events Association, Women in Sports and Events (WISE), and other industry experts. She is certified in crowd management, first aid/AED, and other services supporting guests and event safety. In her spare time, she enjoys creating family experiences, engaging in new travel opportunities, and experiencing the world of cooking and cultural dining.