FICP exists to create a climate in which insurance and financial services conference planners, together with hospitality partners, can exchange proven meeting management techniques and explore trends and new ideas that enhance the value of conferences.

As a means to accomplish our worthwhile mission, the FICP board of directors, through its strategic plan, is committed to the goal of increasing the value of FICP to meeting planners and hospitality partners through education.

In 2005, as part of our plan, FICP formed an education committee to meet the educational needs of planners and hospitality members. We introduced two webinars and began to conduct quarterly conference calls with the regional chapter chairs in an effort to enhance educational delivery and consistency at the local level. We also upgraded the educational content of the Summer Education Forum and the annual conference.

Committed to Meeting Face-to-Face

Meeting is our business, and there is no more effective way to meet than face to face. FICP is clearly focused on delivering quality education to planner members and hospitality partners at both the Summer Education Forum and the annual conference. Design teams for both events are working extremely hard to develop the level of education and interaction for which FICP is known. Please refer to the next page for more information about both the forum and annual conference, and stay current by going to

In the Spirit of Partnership

The education committee continues to address the association's goal of increasing the value of education from several angles. This year, the committee's tasks include:

  1. Exploring additional educational offerings

    FICP partnered with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and Shari Wallack of Buy the Sea to offer a unique opportunity to participate in an educational cruise. Our group sets sail from Boston on May 19 and returns May 21. All FICP planner members received an invitation, and, as of this writing in mid-April, the response has been excellent. The first 20 FICP planner members to register received complimentary registration. In addition to sailing on the maiden voyage of Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines' Freedom of the Seas, participants will hear cruise and incentive expert Jonathan Howe, Esq., discuss “Cruises: The Legalese that Raises the Bar on Success for your Cruise Event.”

  2. Identifying partnership opportunities with other organizations

    FICP has partnered with Meetings & Conventions magazine, which will present a session at the education forum, and hold the Financial and Insurance Invitational golf outing and dinner immediately following the forum. Additionally, FICP continues its partnership with Financial & Insurance Meetings by publishing this newsletter, working in tandem with an educational offering at the forum, and exploring additional ideas, which we will formally meet to discuss at the June FICP Board meeting.

  3. Standardizing regional chapter meeting programming to offer consistency and efficiency of resources

    Quarterly calls continue with the regional chapter leaders. Paul Eder has been appointed to oversee this effort.

  4. Evaluating the success of the webinars and determining the next steps

    Based on the success of the first two webinar offerings, the board has decided to continue the webinar program in 2006. The Education Committee is pursuing a “State of the Hotel Industry” program for the summer and a detailed demonstration of the APEX Initiative, to be delivered by the Convention Industry Council, toward the end of the year.

  5. Exploring new ways to support the professional growth of members

    Laura Vickers Reines, CMP, CTSM, continues to serve as our CMP liaison to CIC. In this capacity, Laura serves as a member of the CMP Board Recertification and CMP Board Exam committees. The education committee is also pursuing other educational opportunities, including the possibility of partnering with some colleges and universities to offer an internship program for student planners.

I look forward to seeing you at the Education Forum June 14 to 16, at the Ritz-Carlton Lodge, Reynolds Plantation in Greensboro, Ga.

Karyn Rizzo, CMP
Vice President, Education