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Aug. 2 - 7, 2015

University of North Georgia, Dahlonega, Georgia

Propel your Career and Your Organization to the Next Level

The path to earning your Travel Marketing Professional Certification

The App
by Populace

Registration Now Open

Marketing College Registration - PDF- ONLINE

Marketing College Alumni Registration

But you can see #STSMC14 photos on Flickr

Quote of the Month (Sent to Joe Veneto, a MC instructor): January 8, 2015 ". As a third year student at STS Marketing College I chose to center one of my final graduation projects around Experiential Tourism. After your presentation, I was excited to share what I felt was very needed and worthwhile information with many of our tourism-related businesses in my county. I put together a presentation and actually conducted a workshop, introducing myself as an owner of a tourism-related business and engaging them in an actual “visitor-experience” activity. Then I was able to transition into the presentation. It worked beautifully and I received so much positive feedback. A few attendees stated it was exactly the information they needed. Others stated it was the best workshop they’d attended in a long time (not so much because of my presentation, I’m sure, but mainly because of the subject matter and how useful it will be to them). I just wanted to let you know of this success and of how timely your presentation was at Marketing College for me and for our communities here. Thanks for all you do and for your support and contribution of time and efforts to the Marketing College program.

Lisa Moorman, VDP, Tourism Manager
Botetourt County Office of Tourism, Fincastle, VA

Class of 2015 Featured Opening Night Orientation

Special Guest Speaker (BIO)

Cory Ramsey, Day Tripper

Map Dot, Kentucky - "Every Dot Matters"

Thank you to our incredible 2014 S
ponsors who have kept tuition affordable!



The premier educational program for the tourism industry in the U.S.
~ the perfect forum for the exchange of ideas.

A superior educational opportunity in a tranquil environment ~  classes taught by industry leaders and working professionals.

Opportunities for networking with peers from across the Southeast and throughout the industry.

Since 1992, for one week each year, tourism industry professionals from all over the Southeast meet at University of North Georgia for the Southeast Tourism Society Marketing College.

During the week, students experience a broad-based curriculum of courses designed to teach marketing techniques from all facets of the tourism industry. Marketing College professors are working, experienced professionals from across the U.S. who not only bring expertise, but real-world knowledge and experience, to the classroom.

From the time students arrive on Sunday evening until they depart on Friday, they enjoy classes, lectures, discussion groups and one-of-a-kind networking opportunities in an academic environment conducive to learning.

Students who attend three years of Marketing College receive a Travel Marketing Professional (TMP) certification, presented at a special graduation ceremony at the STS spring meeting. 

With the class of 2014 graduation in Charlotte, NC (March 21, 2015)

There will be a total of 876 industry professionals that have earned TMP certification.

Year 1   Year 2   Year 3

Alumni "A" 
August 3 - 4

Alumni "B"
August 6 - 7

Festivals & Events

Special classes in event management, sponsorship dollars, revenue generation and more.

Earn a Festival & Events Specialist designation along with your Travel Marketing Professional certification with official recognition 

Explore the details about STS Marketing College
Registration  Sponsorships

Partner in Education

Schedule Activities Testimonials
Plan a Dahlonega Trip
Driving Directions
Find a Hotel

Year 1

Year 2
Year 3
Alumni "A" Alumni "B"
Festivals & Events

@SoutheastTouris  (#STSMC15)   Facebook      Flickr               Pinterest       

Miles Media Marketing Destinations

Miles is STS’ Partner in Education


Why did Miles become an official partner in education with STS?

Because Miles is passionate about travel.  We believe the moments that capture our imagination and create lasting memories occur through travel.  Together with STS, we can share our passion while inspiring others in our industry to share their passion.


 Year 1
  • Tourism 101: A Comprehensive Study of Tourism
  • Branding & Its Unique Application to Communities
  • Top Trends in Travel & Tourism
  • Secrets of Travel Packaging Success
  • Marketing vs. Advertising
  • Using National & State Data to Help with Your Marketing
  • Selling for Success
  • Integrated Tourism Marketing Online|Offline Working Together
  • Public Relations 101
  • DIY (Do-it-yourself) Research
  • Working with International Travelers
  • Demystifying Economic Impact
  • Inquiry to Fulfillment to Conversion to Database
  • Creating a Perfect Tourism Brochure
 Year 2
  • Community & Destination Board Leadership
  • Age to Affinity, The New and Emerging Tour & Travel Market
  • Profiles & Conversion Study
  • Content is King - Telling the Story of Your Destination
  • Humanizing the Customer Experience
  • Social Media
  • Federal Tourism Policy\
  • Marketing vs. Advertising 102
  • User Friendly Guide to Tourism Research
  • Demystifying Economic Impact
  • Multi-Channel Marketing: Integrating New Technologies
  • Press Tour 101
  • Generational Marketing: Distinctions Between
  • The Five Generational Groups
  • Destination Branding
  • Working with Your Hotels & Attractions
Year 3
Third year instruction will be extended classes ending by noon on Wednesday. We encourage you to stay around for the hoedown barn picnic.
  • Social Media
  • Research & Your Attractions
  • Green Tourism
  • Sports Marketing
  • Data to Strategies
  • Experiential Tourism



Specifically designed for travel professionals who have earned 
Travel Marketing Professional (TMP) certification. 

Alumni classes are a power-packed day and a half designed to educate, update and energize.

Choose both or one; 
add the festivals classes and stay the week to reengage with your peers - networking in a gorgeous setting!

Monday, August 3 - Tuesday, August 4

 Class A

Writing Your Marketing Plan

Thursday, August 6 - Friday, August 7

Class B

Sports Smart: Case studies in destination marketing from the front line of the Sports Tourism Industry

Courses leading to Festivals and Events Professional Certification

  Festivals and events have an ever increasing importance to the communities that host them.

     These occasions for family, friends to present a showcase of what is important are the life-blood of a community's tourism outreach, economic development in action!

     Southeast Tourism Society, working with Southeast Festivals and Events Association, realize the importance of this field and now offer courses for those who work closely with festivals and events.

Courses offered include event management, sponsorship, revenue generation and more. At the end of three years, a Travel Marketing Professional certification with official recognition given as a Festivals and Events Specialist will be bestowed.  On the registration form, simply select "Festivals and Events Track" to earn certification as a Festival & Events Planner (FEP)!




The time and commitment over three years lead up to final requirements to earn Travel Marketing Professional certification.

Perspective TMP Graduation Projects

TMP lapel pins have been created & will given to every graduate who 
has earned their TMP designation when they attend an STS function.


DESIGNED By Mikula | Harris
Specifically designed for travel professionals who have earned 
Travel Marketing Professional (TMP) certification. 

Alumni classes are a power-packed day and a half designed to educate, update and energize.

Choose both or one; 
add the festivals classes and stay the week to reegage with your peers - networking in a gorgeous setting!
Did you graduate a few years ago and not complete your projects?  It isn't too late, contact Mama Moon and find out what you can do to receive your TMP!

More Than Classes and Studying

Take time to relax and enjoy activities that showcase the Dahlonega area, hosts of STS Marketing College for 23 years.
Have some fun, get to know peers from around the country and throughout the industry. Discover life long learning and career long friendships.

» An evening at Wolf Mountain Winery
» Special Activities on Wednesday Afternoon  
» 40 dining experiences – your problem is to choose one! 
» Big Barn Hoe Down for an evening of food, fun and festivities
» An evening on the square of Dahlonega including an open house, shopping and live music

 Come and explore tourism in action in Dahlonega!


Achasta  Golf & Lunch 
639 Birch River Drive Dahlonega, GA 30533

Appalachian Outfitters  


This is the kayak trip on the Chestatee River,

Plan on 3 hour window depending on the water.


1 hour trip unless you go twice – 1.5

Gold Panning at Crisson Gold Mine
1 pan, 2 buckets of gem stones/dirt
Wagon ride to show you the mine
Consolidated Gold Mines 
Underground Adventures
Includes Underground Tour and Gold Panning



Sunday, August 2

1:00 - 4:00 p.m. Registration: Pick up books, materials and room keys at
5:00 p.m. Orientation in the Gloria Schott Auditorium at Nix Fine Arts Center
Special Guest Speaker: Cory Ramsey, Day Tripper 
6:00 p.m. Reception @ Wolf Mountain Vineyards
Monday, August 3 through Thursday, August 6
7:00 - 8:00 a.m. Breakfast at campus dining hall
8:00 a.m. - Noon Classes
12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Lunch at dining hall
1:05 - 4:50 p.m. Classes
6:00 p.m. Dinner
·   Mon         Smith House, followed by a  Dahlonega Open House with shopping & live music on the town square
·   Tue           Pizza & business card social at the Dorm
·   Wed         Hoedown!  
·   Thu           On your own
FridayAugust 7
7:00 - 8:00 a.m. Breakfast at campus dining hall
8:00 - 11:00 a.m. Classes
11:00 a.m.
Adjourn: Closing photos with certificates (first and second years)
Certificates for third-year class will be presented at the STS Spring Meeting 2015.
What do you have to say?

     "I truly believe anyone in the tourism industry should attend this school. I have only held my position for seven months as Tourism Director and Every day I was telling myself, 'I'm just not there yet,' if you know what I mean. Now, I know I am 'not there,' however, I know I can 'get there' and do my job well, thanks to STS Marketing College. I have an altogether new approach for my marketing plan and I owe it all to STS."

     "Marketing College has continued to revitalize my energy towards tourism, the organization and customer service."

     "Professional development is important. We never know everything and with the TMP designation and the opportunity to attend the program offered for alumni, the development continues as well as keeping me on top of the latest and greatest effecting the hospitality industry. It's good to see how other destinations are dealing with similar situations. Sometimes we forget that although the destination is different - larger or smaller - we all have the same struggle or challenges or needs. I look forward to the Alumni program knowing it will provide new and exciting ideas."

     "This week has been amazing! I cannot imagine that anything else will benefit my career in the way that Marketing College will.  Everything as been exceptional, from the rich curriculum and scrumptious snacks, to the incredible networking events and lifelong friendships I have made with colleagues from across the southeast.  Thank you STS for providing this fabulous opportunity!"

     "I absolutely enjoyed every minute of my Marketing College experience and would highly recommend it to anyone! Not only in the Tourism Industry, but in the Economic Development Industry. In my opinion it is vital that the business world begin looking at us with eyes that see us for what we really are and do. Our Industry creates countless jobs as well as the huge economic impact it makes on our communities!  I am making use of the education I received from STS and carrying it forward.  It is my personal goal to guarantee that my community is well-informed of the impact the tourism industry makes in my county, and our state.  I want you to know how much I sincerely appreciate this experience, and I will be attending the Alumni Class next year."

     "I thoroughly enjoyed the alumni class and left a completed survey for you in the class. I must say we (DMO's) are very fortunate to have an organization like STS providing the level of training, research, networking opportunities and tools for us to better market our destinations."

    "Marketing College was an excellent opportunity to learn from industry leaders about destination marketing. The networking opportunities with peers also proved to be an invaluable experience. I highly recommend the program."

    "Attending STS Marketing College is one of the most memorable experiences of my career. The one week session each year allows you the time to step out of your day-to- day work responsibilities and become re-energized which in-turn helps you stay competitive and marketable in today's travel and tourism environments."

    "As a fan of travel & tourism as an industry, you know that professionalization is the key to continued success. Finishing the STS Marketing College to earn a Travel Marketing Professional certification is the key to professionalization. As a TMP, you will be an active voice for the industry both locally and around the region. This is an important personal goal, a goal that is good for you, good for Tallahassee."

    "Often the newcomers have a limited tourism background and it appears that many attend the marketing school after they have been in the field a while. I feel that the program would be a huge benefit to newcomers and would diminish the learning curve. The networking is by far, the best benefit – at least for me it helped me to realize that there were others still learning the ropes after three years. Most of all, I endorse and support the STS... it is the kind of organization we need."

    "I can't THANK you enough for all of the insight that I gained from STS Marketing College!!!! What a week WELL spent!"

    "I want to thank you (STS) for making Marketing College such a wonderful experience. We implemented so many ideas during our three year stint, all of which have made our Visitors Bureau a better place to be and increased our bottom line as well. I am looking forward to the alumni class and again, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!"

    "I am at CTTP for the state of Tennessee and that means a great deal to me, but having my TMP from STS means the world to me. The acquaintances and very close friends I have made through Marketing College, is worth millions to me. I wouldn’t take back a second."

    "Marketing College is a great way to learn and have fun at the same time.... (STS) did a fantastic job, as always."























Alumni Course "A" Monday, August 3 - Tuesday, August 4

Class A

Writing Your Marketing Plan

Presented by Chris Cavanaugh
President and founder of Magellan Strategy Group



Alumni Course "B" Thursday, August 6 - Friday, August 7

Class B

Sports Smart: Case studies in destination marketing from the front line of the Sports Tourism Industry

Presented by Jon Schmieder
                   Founder + CEO, Huddle Up Group, LLC

An interactive session with great sports marketing takeaways for use in their home markets.

  • Identify best practices for marketing destinations to sports events rights holders.
  • Identify WORST practices for marketing destinations to sports events rights holders.
  • Critical thinking around differentiating your destination as a host for sporting events.
  • Develop strategies for relationship building relating to sports sales and marketing.
  • Differences between “Sports Marketing” and “Tourism Marketing.”
  • Understanding of various structures of sports marketing organizations, including:
o Staffing
o Marketing
o Use of boards and advisory boards
o Fundraising
o Bed tax driven versus private funding
o Created events versus bid events









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