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Professional Florist Certificate Program

A Structured Learning Program in Professional Floristry

Master Floral Design logo.





The MSU Extension Professional Florist (PF) program contains multiple courses and certificate programs designed to help people gain knowledge and skill in creating floral products sold for a profit. You can enroll in a single course, or you can follow curriculum tracks to attain certifications. These courses have been peer-reviewed by some of the best floristry and floriculture faculty from higher education institutions in the U.S. We use a combination of online and in-person learning to deliver research-based, best practices information so that participants can accomplish them in steps that work with their schedules. We provide learners with the foundations to build understanding and skills needed in today’s marketplace.

Our courses are recommended for those who want to sell floral designs and related products for income. It is open to anyone 18 years and older and you do not have to be a Mississippi resident to participate. While our consumer-oriented Master Floral Designer program was created for floral enthusiasts to attain knowledge and skills in floral design, the Professional Florist courses focus on retailing floral products. Mississippi State University and MSU Extension are nationwide leaders in floristry education.

How It Works

You can select from individual courses to entire certificate programs to meet your educational needs. Choose those that are best for your goals.

All Courses

Level I (100% online)

Becoming a Professional Floral Designer

Care and Handling of Cut Flowers

Design Principles, Creating Beauty in Design

Design Elements, the Ingredients of Design

Basic Floral Design Mechanics

Level II (in person, Biloxi)

This level consists of a four-day, hands on workshop in the foundations of floral design at our Biloxi floral studio. Students will create flowers to wear and carry and create multiple tabletop floral designs using a variety of mechanics and materials. They will learn how to use all postharvest products, floristry tools, supplies. Emphasis is placed on transferring basic design work to advanced applications in retail floristry.

Level III

Level III consists of advanced courses where students learn the business behind floristry, wedding floral design, and sympathy tributes. The business course (online) is headed by Dr. Rachael Carter. Level III’s in-person advanced floral design course in wedding floral designs covers practice in flowers to carry, ceremony and receptions designs, and flowers to wear. Students will gain experience in booking and pricing wedding orders. The in-person sympathy floral design course provides practice in casket and standing sprays, sympathy arrangements, and booking and pricing a sympathy order. Both in-person courses are held at the MSU Coastal Research and Extension Center, Biloxi.

Business Planning: Market Analysis and Decision Making (online)

Wedding Floral Design I (in person, Biloxi)

Sympathy Floral Design I (in person, Biloxi)

Level IV

Level IV advances learning with advanced wedding and sympathy design practice. All courses contain assignments created to enhance learning. As you proceed through the program, you will compile a professional portfolio. These courses do not count for college credit.

Wedding Floral Design II (in person, Biloxi)

Sympathy Floral Design II (in person, Biloxi)

Certificate Programs

Floral Designer Certificate

The Floral Designer Certificate provides entry level education for floral design jobs. This training will help you prepare for part-time or full-time jobs in florist shops or assisting event companies with parties and weddings.

This certificate requires successful completion of Level I and Level II courses. Level 1 contains five, 100% online courses that form the foundation of basic, professional floral design. Students will learn about floral industry careers, what employers expect from an employee, and what employees can do to excel in their jobs. Additional courses in Level I contain detailed and easy-to-understand information about floral care and handling, design principles, design elements, and basic floral design mechanics. You can register for any of the Level I courses at any time and you will maintain unlimited access to them via the MSU Extension online learning platform.

Once you have gained the foundational theory knowledge from Level 1, you will be ready to advance to Level II. Level II is a four-day, in person, hands-on course where students learn to create sound mechanics and placements for basic, retail floral designs. Projects include centerpieces and table designs, flowers to wear and carry, and other arrangements with emphasis on mechanical stability, geometric form and balance, and floral longevity. This course is held at the MSU Coastal Research and Extension Center in Biloxi. Upon completion of Level II, you can request the certificate.

Wedding Floral Designer Certificate

By earning the Wedding Floral Designer certification, you will gain valuable knowledge and hands on experience in the planning, sales, design, and installation of wedding flowers. This program requires successful completion of Phases I-II and Wedding Floral Design I and II. This program helps prepare students for part-time and full-time careers in floristry, working in retail shops and floral studios. Upon successful completion, you can request the certificate.

Management Floral Designer Certificate

The Management Floral Designer Certificate builds upon the foundations of floral design theory and provides business knowledge to help retail florists succeed in management roles. This certificate requires successful completion of Levels I-II, and business courses only in Levels III-IV. It is recommended for professionals who want to gain management positions, involved in them already, or those interested in purchasing established floral businesses. Upon completion, you can request the certificate.

Entrepreneur Floral Designer Certificate

Successfully complete all four levels within the PF program to attain the Entrepreneur Floral Designer Certificate.

Ready to take the next step and commit to being a Professional Florist? Register for Professional Florist classes.

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