USC wedding planning course provides free wedding for one lucky couple

Students preparing last March for the most recent Love Story Wedding. Photos provided by USC.

Wedding season may be over with the close of summertime, but for a group of hospitality students at the University of South Carolina, it is just beginning.

Professor Annette Hoover’s wedding planning class gives students the opportunity to gain first-hand experience in wedding planning. The Love Story Wedding is a project that Hoover began at the university in 2001, and since, has resulted in 33 student-planned weddings. The event began as an annual occurrence. However, the demand increased from both students wanting to take the class, and couples wanting to be chosen.  Now there are two Love Story Weddings each year.

Fiancés who are 18 years or older and live in South Carolina can apply to win an all-expense paid wedding and honeymoon. The catch? The couple must turn the entire decision-making process over to the students who will arrange everything from bridalwear to wedding venue.

While there is no set budget, expenses for the project are covered through business donations. Average pricing of a Love Story Wedding is $41,000. The Association for Wedding Professionals International (AFWPI) donates the honeymoon, location varying each year.

To enter, a couple must submit a video telling their love story, and explain why they are the best ones to win the wedding. Students in the course watch each video then vote on the most outstanding couple as their semester project. Applications are due by midnight Sept. 3 and information on submissions can be found here.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment, Columbia, Lexington County, Richland County

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