Shafiiqa Theophile already knows what she’ll call her future business: Theostrophic Adventures.
She will plan weddings, of course, but also birthday parties, corporate gatherings and everything in between.
“I don’t want to limit myself,” said the Vestal resident, who will graduate from SUNY Broome this spring with a degree in Event Management.
Shafiiqa is originally from Antigua in the Caribbean, and moved to the Southern Tier to join her family. She grew up surrounded by lively events such as Carnival, and a high school home economics course further piqued her interest in creating rewarding experiences for guests.
“I have a passion for fashion, and I wanted to find something where I could use those skills,” she said.
Event Management proved to be a perfect fit. She is enjoying her classes this semester, which include Principles of Floral Design, Hotel and Restaurant Cost Control, Catering and Community Service, and Meetings, Corporate Events, Conventions, Trade Shows and Expos.
So far, however, her favorite classes have been Wedding Planning, in which students showcase their skills in an annual Mock Wedding, and IT for Service Industries. The knowledge she gained from the latter course proved highly useful in other areas of her education, allowing her to create websites, use Excel spreadsheets and more.
Applied learning is a major part of the Event Management curriculum, giving students the opportunity to obtain mastery in their field even before graduation. The first event Shafiiqa will work on this semester is a mock co-ed bridal shower in the Calice Advanced Manufacturing Center, with more to follow, including the Mock Wedding later this spring.
“Applied learning makes things even better,” she reflected. “It doesn’t matter how much theory you have, you need the real-life experience to go with it.”
After she graduates this May, she plans to transfer to SUNY Delhi for an online bachelor’s degree in Event Management program. Following that? Entrepreneurship calls.
“SUNY Broome has a good Event Management program. It would be great if we could stay here to get a bachelor’s degree,” she said.