Georgia College Front Page

Under 30: Ashton Dreyer

Age: 29 //

Occupation: Assistant Show Manager, Southern Shows (Charlotte, NC) //

Major at GC: Business, Minor: Marketing / Masters: Public Administration


Why did you choose Georgia College?

It’s a really pretty campus – that drew me in. It’s smaller and the dorms were really nice. I looked at several bigger schools in Georgia, but the size of Georgia College was very appealing to me.


Favorite memory?

Being part of a sorority was a fun part of college. I especially enjoyed Greek Week and Bid Day.

There are so many other memories. I enjoyed events on Front Campus because it's so pretty.


Tell me about your job.

I’m an event planner for Southern Shows and we plan eleven Women’s Shows and a Farm Show. I am responsible for planning the Southern Women’s Show in Raleigh and the Southern Women’s Show in Charleston.


How did you get into event planning?

When I was getting my Master’s, I worked in the President’s Office and assisted in planning events for the office. That sparked my interest in event planning. I loved planning the events and working with other departments on campus, as well as learning how the university operates.


What does your typical day-to-day look like? Is there such a thing?

It’s kind of all over the place. It depends on what time of the year it is.

Towards the beginning of a show-planning process, I will mostly be finding the exhibitors and reviewing the past show to see how we can improve. As the show gets closer, I start working on things like securing the celebrity guest. As you get closer to the show, it’s more social media, marketing, promoting the show and creating TV and radio ads. Right before the show, it’s on-site work to set up the show, but also exhibitor questions and questions from the public – just making sure everything is in line before the show opens.


Laurie Hernandez, center, was a recent celebrity guest.

Which celebrities have made appearances at the shows?

Normally, we have two celebrities at each show. Last week we had Laurie Hernandez, the Olympic gymnast. 

We’ll have Keegan Allen from "Pretty Little Liars" at one of our upcoming shows – all the girls love him, he’s a hit. We’ve had Peter Facinelli from "Twilight" and Randy from “Say Yes to the Dress”. We've also booked people from "Duck Dynasty" and a lot of contestants from "The Bachelor."  We try to gage who is trending and popular, and we work with different agents to schedule them.


Favorite celebrity guest?

I think Randy from “Say Yes to the Dress” was probably my favorite because he came to the show right before I got married. It was really cool to talk to him about my wedding. He told me not to spend a ton of money on a veil and said it was just tulle on a hair clip with some glue.


What is the most exciting thing about your job?

Working with bigger sponsors and securing sponsorships for the show, as well as creating features for the show, are just a few of the highlights of my job. For the show coming up in Raleigh, we are doing a DIY workshop on one of our stages. I think organizing that kind of stuff is fun.


Any major challenges you've made it through?

We just started a new show in Charleston. Beginning a new show can be challenging because you have to educate the general public on what the show is, and then educate exhibitors on why they should participate in the show. These items add an extra element of work and time to the job. It was fun to start a new show though. There’s a lot involved to get it off the ground. It was a great learning experience.


So you’re based in Charlotte, but have shows in Charleston and Raleigh?

Yes, we have shows all over the Southeast and one in Michigan.


Who is someone you look up to?

One of my biggest mentors is definitely my boss at Georgia College, Monica Starley, because she nurtured my love for event planning and guided me all throughout college. Also, my parents and husband because they are always supportive, even when my schedule is a little hectic.


What’s on your bucket list?

On my personal bucket list I’d like to go to Tuscany. Career-wise, I think it would be cool to work in corporate event planning or own my event planning company. 

"Action shot" of Ashton working a show.


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