Meet the Team
Hospitality students take on promotion of UNLVino
One of the city’s largest and oldest wine and food tasting events, UNLVino is a huge undertaking with most of its planning and execution falling on UNLV hospitality students. This year seniors Valeriya Nogotkova and Taylor Arth, along with Kelli Maruca of Fine The Agency, comprise the marketing/social media team promoting the event to the Las Vegas community.
Nogotkova and Arth, who are each graduating this year with a B.S. in Hospitality Management and a concentration in Meetings & Events Management, have experience organizing events. Arth is a Marketing Coordinator for Crazy Pita Restaurant Group, and Nogotkova has recently started her career in the events industry as a Client Support Coordinator at FreemanXP with previous experience from internships at Cirque du Soleil and Freeman.
Why did you choose UNLVino as your capstone course?
Arth: UNLVino is the largest food and wine tasting event in Las Vegas, and as a student with a specialty in meetings and events, the experience is second to none. Valeriya and I have the honor of working with brilliant industry professionals who have so much to offer with regard to experience, advice, and trade tips and tricks.
Nogotkova: To add on to Taylor’s comment, we knew that organizing UNLVino would be a challenge due to its greatness and size, but we were eager to take on that challenge and turn it into a rewarding experience. Of course, we are excited to take our experience and knowledge from UNLVino to our professional lives as well.
What are your weekly goals in preparation of opening the doors to UNLVino?
Nogotkova: As the Marketing/Social Media Team, our number one goal is to spread awareness of UNLVino through various avenues of marketing and social media. In order to do so, Taylor and I have weekly tasks such as writing blog posts, organizing marketing and advertising announcements, promoting the event through social media, and executing table days at UNLV as student managers sell tickets and recruit volunteers.
What is the most rewarding aspect of planning UNLVino?
Arth: This question requires a bit of speculation as we are still in the planning stages, but I presume that being at the event, watching it come to life, watching the smiles on the guests’ faces and hearing all the laughter, and closing the doors at the end of the night and reflecting on all the hard work we put into a wonderfully successful event will be a reward beyond belief.
After planning and executing UNLVino this semester, will you have a different outlook on it when attending as a guest in future years?
Nogotkova: Yes, most definitely! It wouldn’t be a surprise if anyone who attended UNLVino as a guest ended up analyzing and critiquing the event — seeing what was done differently and why you as the previous student manager didn’t think of that idea or strategy, etc. But every professional is guilty of analyzing their talent regardless of their success because we ultimately want to do better every time. It would be quite interesting and exciting to attend next year, because we will know all the in’s and out’s of the event.
Do you plan and execute the entire event on your own?
Arth: No, definitely not. We have an amazing support system of people who have been planning this event for many years who assist us in accomplishing all our goals. Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits is the primary sponsor of this event. They take the lead on organizing the event and work with UNLV students as well as Fine The Agency to ensure everything is executed to perfection.
Would you recommend attending this event?
Nogotkova: Absolutely, without a doubt. With 20 different food stations, seven by UNLV culinary students and the remaining 13 by local Las Vegas restaurants, and even more wine options, there is something for everyone. This event presents a great opportunity to mingle with friends and meet some incredible movers and shakers in the Las Vegas hospitality industry.