Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can Emergency Management be a Career?

    If you are interested in pursuing a career in the field of emergency management, you should know that there are a variety of options available. Jobs in emergency management are expected to grow at an average rate over the next ten years. Many jobs are found in government agencies like FEMA though there are jobs available in the private sector as well. You can determine which vocational path would be most appropriate and advantageous for you and examine the career paths here.
  • What Type of Emergency Management Degrees Are There?

    In most cases, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree to pursue a career in emergency management. According to the New York Times, there are about 119 universities in the country that offer this degree, including the State University of New York at New Paltz, Millersville University of Pennsylvania, and North Dakota State University. If the university you’re considering doesn’t specifically have a program in emergency management though, there are several other options. Bachelor’s degrees in public administration, business administration, and fire science are also good choice if you are interested in a career as an emergency management director.
    Beyond bachelor’s degrees, there are two other primary choices for emergency management degrees. Many colleges now offer a certificate program in emergency management, which is a good complement to one of the alternative bachelor’s degrees mentioned above. Dozens of colleges and universities maintain certificate programs in this discipline, some of which are online. The most notable include Drexel University, Florida State University, and the University of Idaho, as well as many based in community colleges.
    For those who have already earned a bachelor’s degree in another discipline, emergency management degrees at the master’s level are also available. These programs allow even further specialization; for example, categories for healthcare, public safety, administration, and more exist within the classification of emergency management. Some of the most notable programs exist at Georgetown University, Boston University, and Oklahoma State University.
    While not a degree per se, experience will be one of the most important aspects of building a career in emergency management. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most departments seek candidates who already have many years of experience in fire, police, public safety, or other government agencies that deal with disasters. Volunteering with the bureaus in the town where you’re interested in working as early as possible will help you get the experience you need while you’re working on your degree.
    There are other common degrees that can help you get a job in this field beyond those that are labeled as emergency management. For example, many universities now offer degrees in homeland security and public safety, both of which can be attractive to employers in this field.
    For further research, the Federal Emergency Management Administration maintains a list of accredited degree programs in Emergency Management. This site also has many resources, such as free training materials and textbooks, that you may want to peruse if you’re considering this career path.
  • Can I Get an Emergency Management Degree Online?

    Earning an online emergency management degree can provide students with the knowledge and training they need to respond to crisis situations. Natural and man-made disasters occur on a regular basis and trained professionals need to be prepared to handle tsunamis, earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, and even terrorist attacks. An Emergency Management Degree can be earned online. Students may choose a Bachelor of Science degree, an Associate’s Degree, or gain knowledge through a certificate program. Depending on the amount of involvement a person desires in an emergency situation, the type of degree program will provide the necessary background knowledge to get a job. Students choosing this type of program will need to take courses in public speaking, writing, and computer basics. Students will specialize in courses concerning crisis decision-making, disaster and emergency response procedures, emergency planning and prevention, and other organizational and business related classes. When choosing to pursue a degree in Emergency Management, the student needs to be able to communicate and maintain composure in stressful situations. Once a student has decided to pursue an Emergency Management Degree, he or she may need to choose a specialty area. The goal of the degree is to find a job in a field that that student enjoys. Whether he or she plans to work through a government organization or a private sector job, an online degree will provide the needed expertise.
  • Do I Need to Pass a Comprehensive Exam to Graduate from an Emergency Management Degree?

    Most undergraduate degree programs in emergency management do not require prospective graduates to take or pass a comprehensive examination in emergency management. Typically, any university that does require such an examination will do so only at the graduate level, since those graduates are believed be highly specialized experts in the industry. Undergraduate students considering graduate school should, however, keep in mind the idea that they will need to pass one of these examinations to receive a higher degree. Because the comprehensive exam for emergency managers is not mandated or regulated by a government body, schools are free to deploy an exam that is entirely unique to their program and their style of teaching students advanced concepts in the field. This means that some schools consider a final research project or thesis to be akin to a comprehensive examination, while others will require a final interview that asks course-related, scholarly questions. Still others require a traditional, written examination, which is typically taken on a weekend at least two semesters prior to graduation. This gives students an opportunity to retake the exam if they fail to meet the required passing criteria.
  • How Can I Obtain Experience in the Emergency Management Field?

    One of the best ways to obtain experience in the field of emergency management is to volunteer with a business, company, or non-profit organization that offers such services. In addition to obtaining experience in your chosen vocational field this way, volunteering affords you an opportunity to network with potential employers and business partners who operate within the emergency management sector. To get started, simply do an internet search for local organizations and/or businesses that allow citizens to volunteer. Be sure to document your volunteer hours so that you can include them in your resumes. Completing an internship is another wonderful way to obtain experience in the emergency management field. There are a variety of emergency management internships that an individual can apply for. Externships are another wonderful way to gain experience in the field of emergency management. Externships afford individuals the opportunity to job shadow a respected professional within the industry. If you are thinking about pursuing a career in the field of emergency management, you should know that doing so can be personally and professionally rewarding. Now that you are aware of several mechanisms that can be used for the purpose of obtaining experience in the emergency management field, you can make an informed decision regarding which path would be most appropriate for you.
  • How Long Does it Take to Complete an Emergency Management Degree?

    Undergraduate programs generally require 120 semester or 180 quarter hours to qualify for the bachelor’s degree and usually take four years for completion. Courses in general education, prescribed and elective courses in the major field and other courses that the student can elect make up the program. By attending summer sessions and/or taking heavier loads each semester, students can reduce the time required for graduation to three or three-and-a-half years. Some programs will give credit for work or volunteer experience. Many of the programs are offered online, and these provide a flexibility that enables working professionals or home-bound students to enroll for the full program. A few universities have altered their program schedules to accommodate those attending while holding full-time jobs. An example is a university that has an academic schedule of six eight-week terms in a year where the student takes only two courses per term, and is able to complete the program in the usual time. Master’s degree programs commonly require 30 to 40 semester credit hours consisting of core courses, a required course from another program such as Biostatistics, electives within the field of study, and suggested other courses in foreign languages, communications or humanities. About half of the programs offered are provided solely online. Many of the on-campus programs have online options, and a few programs have a special hybrid arrangement that combine both features. Master’s level programs are especially in demand by working professionals. Several universities have come up with unique programs that accommodate the working student. These include holding evening classes or combining weekend classes with online work; they allow students to complete the programs in the usual time. Doctoral programs emphasize a conceptual understanding of crisis and human behavior, and the development of high levels of research, communication and leadership skills. Course requirements vary; however, the student generally completes the required courses and seminars, then embarks on the dissertation process. Depending on the latter, the duration of the program can vary from three to seven years. There are only a limited number of programs presently available; academic expansion in this field will likely lead to an increase in doctoral programs in the future. In a field where knowledge is constantly expanding, which requires mastery of management, analysis, communication and other skills, and where precision and accuracy can make a life-or-death difference, there is no shortcut. This must be kept in mind when one considers the question of how long it takes to complete an emergency management degree.
  • How Much Can I Make Working for the Department of Homeland Security?

    Government jobs at all levels, whether they’re with local agencies, state organizations, or federal departments, virtually all come with a pay schedule that dictates minimal compensation, maximum annual salaries, and the type of annual raises that candidates can expect. The pay schedule is split into different classes, based on the qualifications a job applicant needs in order to perform a given task. Positions that require more education generally are placed higher on the scale, paying more initially and granting more generous raises. Positions that require little education, or far less training and experience, pay less on average. When an employer adheres to a pay scale rather than a system of merit-based compensation, all applicants would do well to consider earning master’s degrees, professional degrees, and even doctoral degrees in a very specific field. Doing so will qualify the applicant for a higher starting position within the department, leading to higher annual raises and a better maximum annual salary at the high end of the pay scale. No matter the position being filled, however, those graduates with relevant education, training, and experience, have a great shot at being hired and promoted within the Department of Homeland Security. As long as terrorist threats remain a major risk to American safety and peace of mind, these positions will continue to be absolutely the most important within the defense industry. In fact, they will remain among the most important within the entire federal government.
  • How Will Potential Employers View an Online Emergency Management Degree?

    If you are thinking about pursuing a career in the field of emergency management, you should know that doing so can provide you with a plethora of personal and professional advantages. You should also note that employers have begun viewing online degrees as just as substantive and valid as those attained through the traditional learning environment. However, it is critically important that individuals who opt to obtain their emergency management degree online do so through a learning institution that is accredited, has a traditional campus, and an established brand. Now that you have obtained an answer to the important question “How do potential employers view an online emergency management degree?,” you can determine whether this educational route would be appropriate for you.
  • What Are Some Degree or Certificate Requirements for a Career in Emergency Management?

    Emergency management jobs, because they are in government services, do require either academic training or sufficient experience. To become an emergency manager, a coordinator, or a director, you will need to pursue a degree. In the past, there was not a degree program that has a strong focus or emphasis in Emergency Management, but today there are specialization programs that focus on exactly this. With the profession predicted to grow by 20 percent in the next few years, several different schools have developed special programs to prepare graduates for the bright occupation that is high in demand. By completing a Bachelor’s degree program in Emergency Management, you can obtain all of the skills you need to graduate school and get a job in the field. This is why most employers, both private and government entities, are primarily looking for candidates who possess a BS in Emergency Management. After completing the program, taking a test to become a Certified Emergency Manager will help you compete even more in the field. Requirements for entry-level emergency managers are expected to get even more strict in the upcoming years. This is why those who are serious about entering the field should dedicate time to earning a degree. Compare all of the Emergency Management programs that are available, and earn a degree so that you can compete.
  • Do I Need a College Degree to Work for Border Patrol?

    A college degree is not a set requirement for entering into a career as a border patrol agent, although having an education in a field related to the position, such as criminal justice, is often a benefit. Some courses a criminal justice student might complete that are beneficial include criminology fundamentals, police organization, criminal due process, forensic investigative procedures, introduction to criminal investigation, and criminal law. The ability to speak Spanish is also often required. In addition to possible benefits from completing an associate’s degree or a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice or a related field, once hired, future border patrol agents will also be required to complete an academy for training. In addition to physical training and conditioning, future border patrol agents must also demonstrate knowledge of various laws for immigration and nationality, as well as marksmanship and possible instruction in foreign languages.
  • Do I Need a College Degree to Work for FEMA?

    Do you need a college degree to work for FEMA? The answer to this question depends on the job you want within the organization. Like all federal programs and organizations, FEMA offers hundreds of different jobs that require varying levels of skill, training and expertise. For example, a Contract Specialist with FEMA is required to have a bachelor’s degree in any field or at least 24 semester hours in a relevant business field because this person is responsible for overseeing contract issues for the organization. Other positions may not require any post-secondary education but may require completion of training once hired. Good degrees for FEMA careers include civil engineering, EMT and related medical training, human resources, business and emergency preparedness. For more information on FEMA careers, visit the organization’s outline of available positions. While many FEMA positions don’t require a traditional four-year degree, some aspects of FEMA demand a strong educational background particularly when it comes to leadership. Introduced in 2010, the federal Pathways Program is an initiative based on President Obama’s desire to recruit students into civil service careers. FEMA participates in the Pathways Program by encouraging students from high school through post-graduate programs to apply for internships and fellowship programs in which they can gain experience and exposure to the real-world application of FEMA jobs. What does FEMA look for in a job applicant? Aside from training and education, people who work for FEMA need to be willing to sacrifice time and effort to help total strangers recover from devastating loss. Not everyone will work in the field when disaster strikes, but FEMA demands people who can think clearly and act quickly to solve major problems. In short, you don’t need a college degree to work for FEMA; however, those with strong educational backgrounds may find easier access to the career path they desire within this organization.
  • What Does A FEMA Reservist Do?

    Though the FEMA reservist program is open to anyone, those with experience and education get precedence. Dozens of colleges in the United States offer fire and emergency management undergraduate programs and similar degree programs that help prepare those interested in working for state, local and federal government agencies and those working for fire, police and emergency departments. The program has different types of jobs available that come with different qualifications and requirements. Some jobs might require three to five years of management experience or a graduate degree. The FEMA program provides help and support to people in the midst of an emergency situation and those dealing with the aftermath of that situation. Reservists will arrive on the scene and take steps to identify the biggest problems and look for solutions to those problems. They might work with the Red Cross to get people into shelters, work with other nonprofit organizations to get locals clothing and supplies or find solutions to problems with the transportation system, highways or other places in town. Some reservists help stabilize damaged buildings, while others assist with repairing roads. Those signing up for the reservist program must agree to remain on call for a period of two years. According to FEMA, the organization does it best to only call reservists for help once every year. Those who become part of the program must agree to spend a minimum of 30 days away from home and working in the field after receiving a phone call. There is a chance that a reservist might find himself or herself spending several months in the field. Many workers make arrangements with their place of business to take time off when needed. Those who deny a phone call will likely lose their spots in the program. Like many government agencies, FEMA uses the USA Jobs system to hire new employees. Those interested in working for the agency must go to USA jobs and create an account. After uploading a resume, workers can browse the number of jobs available and apply for a job online. It can take several weeks or months before FEMA responds, but registered users will get a response within a few days if they do not meet the requirements for the job. Those selected for interviews need to attend an in person interview with a FEMA representative
  • Can I Get a Job as a Translator?

    Industries most commonly in need of emergency management translators include local and state government agencies, hospitals, community food and housing organizations and relief services Emergency workers go wherever disaster strikes and the ability to effectively communicate with people may make the difference between life and death for many of them. Local and state government agencies include police, firefighters and paramedics. Translators are invaluable in crisis situations involving people who do not speak English or have a limited vocabulary. Hospitals would need translators for the same reasons to overcome language barriers for successful treatment of non-English speaking patients. The American Red Cross, FEMA and the Salvation Army are examples of relief organizations that respond with aid wherever it is needed. These organizations do not have to travel outside the U.S. to encounter non-English speaking people. Communities within the U.S. are inhabited with non-English speaking residents and there are always foreign tourists that may, unfortunately, be caught in the wake of a disaster. Education and experience are the primary paths to succeed at obtaining a career as a translator in emergency management. Jobs will be plentiful for those who commit to learning and honing the specialized training necessary for a position. If a degree is earned in a field other than a foreign language, several organizations exist that offer exams to show aptitude in a second language. The American Translators Association has several options for translators to earn certification. As our world becomes smaller it’s easy to envision the increased need for those with a talent to translate and communicate in different languages.
  • What Does an Environmental Health and Safety Specialist Do?

    The environmental and safety specialist occupation itself is rather new, having only come to prominence within the last 10 to 15 years. Because of just how recent this profession is, the exact requirements for each job tend to vary at least a little bit. Universal among virtually every entry-level opening in the field, however, is the requirement that candidates have a bachelor’s degree. Generally, this degree needs to be in either a scientific pursuit, occupational safety studies, or a course of study concerning conservation, the environment, or sustainable ecosystems. Qualified candidates can typically enter the profession without having extensive prior experience, with plenty of entry-level jobs that will both train new entrants to the field and build on prior experience gained through co-op opportunities and internships. Typically, the most important set of skills within this profession arise from a sound understanding of scientific and environmental concepts, especially those related to biodegradable materials, renewable resources, and dangerous pollutants. Successful candidates who are interested in pursuing a career more closely aligned with safety need to have a strong background in skills relating to industrial design, product fault testing, occupational safety, and consumer safety. In addition to these more technical skills, those looking for a long-term career in environmental health or public safety should also bring a fondness for social interaction to the job. Many times, professionals in this field act as coordinating forces between the people who test, develop, and eventually use products in the real world. Successfully navigating numerous different goals and approaches is often a key way to find greater success and advancement in the field. For those who wish to advance a bit more quickly through the ranks within an environmental health or safety-related occupation, numerous schools have begun developing graduate-level studies in both fields for interested candidates. These programs typically focus either on managing entire teams of product developers, or on a deeper understanding of how products can be made more environmentally safe for industrial, commercial, or residential use. With no shortage of both educational and occupational opportunities in this field, it’s one that at least merits quite a bit of consideration from today’s students and eco-minded professionals, both for entry-level positions and for more advanced work in environmental, conservation, and workplace safety professions.
  • What Bachelor’s Degree Should I Earn Before Getting a Master’s in Emergency Management?

    Earning an emergency management degree will help you in a competitive job environment, but make sure that you take the time to get the educational experience and the work experience that you need to compete against other applicants. Emergency management is a very unique field, and you will acquire a lot of the skills that you need in school, but you need to show that you are able to handle yourself in a disaster or emergency situation if you want to be bumped up on the list of applicants. The first step to get your resume noticed by recruiters is to gain college-level academic skills by enrolling in a Bachelor’s degree program. Once you do this, you can find an entry-level position in Emergency Management or as an assistant to directors, disaster specialists, and program analysts. All Master’s degree programs in Emergency Management that are offered by accredited schools have a requirement that the student must possess a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited school in order to have their application for admissions reviewed. If you are aspiring to become a policymaker in the government, or you want to be an Emergency Management Director in the private sector, you will need a Master’s degree. With more and more degree programs being designed specifically for Emergency Management, you can locate BS degree programs in Emergency Management that will satisfy the MS program requirements. A Bachelor’s degree in areas of business and management may also satisfy the Bachelor’s degree prerequisite if you can demonstrate that you have professional experience in the field to satisfy the work experience requirements. Keep in mind that the specific requirements can vary from school to school. Make sure you meet all of the prerequisite requirements before you start filling out applications, and compare both traditional and online programs so that you know all of your options. Emergency management is a field that changes day to day, and many people like the unpredictable nature of the job. There are opportunities all over the country, and the demand for Emergency Managers and Directors is predicted to grow by 13% in the next 7 years for candidates who possess a Master’s degree. Start on the right educational path, earn your degree, gain the experience, and do something that is fulfilling and rewarding.
  • What Does a Plant Protection Officer Do?

    With the task of protecting company products and offering security to company employees, the plant protection officer is easily one of the most visible and vital individuals within a given company’s workspace. The position is absolutely essential and, in an economy where loss is often too much to bear, it’s a position that is actually growing year-over-year.
  • What Does a Toxicologist Do?

    Through scientific experiments to evaluate the short and long-term effects of toxic materials or radiation, toxicologists focus their daily duties on researching potential harm caused by chemicals to help establish regulations to protect the general public. From the pesticides that we put on lawns and the food we consume to the makeup we apply and the water we drink, toxicologists play a vital role in ensuring harmful chemicals do not negatively affect our health or our environment. On the typical workday, toxicologists may identify toxic substances, conduct laboratory or field experiments, analyze statistical data, assess toxicity, create safety profiles, write scientific papers, present findings, advise on the safe handling of chemicals, carry out risk analyses, and work on multidisciplinary teams with other scientists. Across industries, toxicologists can be classified into nine basic categories based on their responsibilities in testing toxic materials. Analytical toxicologists work to identify natural or man-made poisons, clinical toxicologists test the effects of drugs on human bodies, and environmental toxicologists study impact of chemicals on living things in the environment. As the most common type, forensic toxicologists focus their expertise on toxins involved in criminal investigations with suspicious deaths. Before products are allowed on the market, industrial toxicologists conduct studies on the adverse effects on humans, while nutritional toxicologists will do similar tests on additives in food. Regulatory toxicologists evaluate the applications to control chemicals, risk assessment toxicologists research long-term exposure to toxins, and veterinary toxicologists study toxicity in relation to animals. The first step towards becoming a toxicologist is pursuing a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with extensive coursework in biology, toxicology, pharmacology, immunology, chemistry, biochemistry, human anatomy, and mathematics. While a bachelor’s degree is sufficient for entry-level positions as a research technician in toxicology, the majority of toxicologists will need to further their education with a master’s or doctoral degree to lead their own research studies. Some toxicologists in the pharmaceutical industry will pursue dual degree programs to earn a Ph.D. and M.D. concurrently to develop clinical experiments. Toxicologists should also become certified through the American Board of Toxicology after passing a three-part exam and having at least three years of work experience. Overall, toxicologists are part of a dynamic profession on the cutting-edge of technological advances to improve protection from the threats of toxic materials on humans and our surrounding environment. Now that you have an understanding of what does a toxicologist do, you can determine if pursuing this career will help you reach your goals for working in pharmaceutical companies, private research firms, government agencies, or universities.
  • What Does an Emergency Management Training Specialist Do?

    When natural disasters or serious situations like the September 11 attacks occur, emergency management specialists go into action to handle the devastating results. These people may be called upon in the event of a range of natural, technological, war-related, or criminal activities. Those who work for emergency services groups must be able to perform crisis management services, search and rescues, clean up, evacuations, and anything that is required, with the assistance of experts in law enforcement, medical fields, and other related fields. They must be familiar with all the local policies and procedures for their area, the equipment available and the basics of what it does, the personnel, and other resources. On a personal level, if you want to be an emergency management training specialist, you must be able to function under high stress situations. People will look to you for instruction under the most serious circumstances, and that might include other emergency management personnel. Emergency management specialists are individuals with a bachelor’s degree and usually one to five years of experience. There are a few degrees besides an emergency management degree that can prepare you for this field. People who work as emergency management training specialists often have experience working with government agencies at some level, and have demonstrated competency in their jobs and in working with people. Many people who work in this field are employed in the public sector. However, both state and local governments hire emergency management training specialists. Divisions of law enforcement and the military also need people who coordinate emergency responses. Many people find work in major cities, but some people do handle emergency management in rural areas. There is a lot of variety for people in this field, and the types of disasters can vary greatly depending upon where you work and who you work for.
  • What Emergency Management Jobs Are Available With The National Weather Service?

    Meteorologists are the first line of defense between weather conditions and the general public. They are the ones responsible for tracking weather conditions all across the country and monitoring those conditions to look for potential problems. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, meteorologists make just over $89,000 a year. Those working for the NWS often make more than those who work for news organizations and local news stations make. During an emergency situation, meteorologists will also monitor the incoming hazards to predict when the situation will end. One of the most important emergency management jobs available with the National Weather Service is the position of office director. The NWS has smaller offices located all across the country, and it needs qualified workers to direct the employees working in those offices. Directors will maintain the office, follow the procedures and regulations of the NWS, hire new employees when needed, keep existing employees happy and stick to the budget given to them. During emergency situations, office directors must coordinate with other offices to have people standing by to cover the events as they unfold and to ensure that the public knows what might happen next and what to do next. The NWS also has jobs available for scientists and technicians. Scientists work on special projects as needed and often arrive on the scene after an emergency to coordinate with volunteers and determine the likelihood of other events that might take place. Technicians are the ones implementing new ideas and concepts in the field. An emergency might take down a large tree near the building and knock out the electrical system or Internet to the building. NWS technicians need to find simple solutions to the problems that the NWS faces during a hurricane or another emergency. Emergency management jobs available with the National Weather Service also include positions as IT specialists. When an emergency occurs, the NWS must send out an alert to other offices and to news organizations around the country. Television and radio stations run special alerts that let residents know if there is a warning or a watch in their area, which helps them know whether they need to keep an eye on the situation or seek shelter right away. IT specialists are the ones who send out that warning and make sure that the alerts go to each organization or office on an internal list. They also maintain the information system of each office and watch for signs of viruses, hacking and other threats. The National Weather Service is one of the most important agencies in the country. Even if you don’t have a degree in meteorology or a science field, you can still find emergency management jobs available with the National Weather Service, including positions as technicians, office directors and IT specialists.
  • What Is A Border Patrol Agent?

    The border patrol agent is an integral part of maintaining the safety and security of the United States. Border patrol agents in the United States work along the eastern coast along the Atlantic Ocean, western coast along the Pacific Ocean, northern border with Canada, or southern border with Mexico. In addition to the search for other illegal materials, border patrol agents are specifically trained to look for the illegal entry of people into the United States. Some of the daily tasks of agents with border patrol include the monitoring of checkpoints along border areas such as ports and highways and checking vehicles, boats, trains, and other transportation vessels for any suspicious or illegal cargo or passengers. Border patrol agents also conduct anti-smuggling operations, smuggling investigations, and patrol cities and other areas close to the borders. Some of the additional techniques used by border patrol agents include video surveillance equipment and electronic sensors. Border patrol agents might use snowmobiles, motorcycles and four-wheel recreational vehicles, boats, horses, vehicles, and foot patrols. Border Patrol Academy is part of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center. After initial hiring, the future border patrol agents attend the academy in New Mexico for 13 weeks. Much of the training that takes place in the academy is designed to ensure that candidates are physically fit and able to handle the sometimes strenuous tasks required in the field. Border patrol agents must have an understanding of various areas. While an undergraduate degree is not a requirement, candidates having a minimum of a bachelor’s degree can sometimes forgo the minimum experience requirement. For candidates who have both previous experience and a degree, chances to be considered for a position may be higher. Some of the knowledge that a relevant degree such as criminal justice can help a prospective agent accumulate includes public safety, security procedures, legal issues, government operations, communication, and criminal and investigative procedures. In addition to physical fitness and the knowledge of the field, there are many skills that are helpful for border patrol agents to possess. These include leadership, ethics, investigation, empathy, social awareness, listening, critical thinking, speaking, coordination, and quick decision making. Also, although not required, speaking another language, particularly Spanish, can be helpful in the application process. A full list of the requirements to be considered for a position as a border patrol agent can be found on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website.
  • What is a Hazardous Material Removal Worker?

    While working in small teams, hazardous material removal workers follow strict guidelines to neutralize the potentially harmful risks presented by asbestos, nuclear waste, arsenic, lead, mold, radiation, and other hazardous materials. On a typical workday, hazmat removal workers often are involved in cleaning up liquid spills with absorbents, ensuring compliance with laws on waste disposal, testing hazardous materials, constructing containment areas, cleaning contaminated equipment, recycling waste, packaging hazardous materials, and maintaining detail records of all cleanup activities. Some hazardous material removal workers specialize their services in cleaning up harmful materials in response to natural or man-made disasters in emergency management to prevent more damage to accident sites. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, around 37,500 hazardous material removal workers are employed throughout the United States, with an estimated 77% working in the waste management and remediation services industry. Hazmat removal workers can find plentiful job opportunities cleaning up hazardous materials in office buildings, schools, hospitals, landfills, incinerators, industrial furnaces, nuclear facilities, electric power plants, and historic buildings. Since removing hazardous materials is extremely dangerous, workers are required to wear coveralls, gloves, safety goggles, shoe covers, and often respirators while working to reduce potential exposure. Most hazardous material removal workers are employed full-time, but many work long overtime or night shift hours when employed in emergency response. While all hazmat removal workers need at least a high school diploma for employment, some choose to receive an associate’s degree related to radiation protection or emergency management to increase job prospects in nuclear facilities. Rather than high education, hazardous material removal workers receive up to 40 hours of intensive on-the-job training in compliance with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s standards. Through a combination of classroom learning and field instruction, the training will teach workers on safety procedures, equipment, chemicals, personal protective gear, and decontamination techniques. Some states also require hazmat removal workers to become licensed by passing a written examination, especially for mold remediation and asbestos or lead removal. Overall, hazardous material removal workers are hard-working individuals who are given the hefty responsibility of cleaning up any harmful materials that could potentially cause danger to people, animals, plant life, and our environment at large. If you believe you have the decision-making skills, attention to detail, mechanical abilities, and physical stamina to take on this career path, it is highly recommended that you consider becoming a hazardous material removal worker to make your mark on protecting the planet from dangerous toxins.
  • What is a Homeland Security Degree?

    Ever since the terrorist attacks in 2007, the need for homeland security professionals has risen. While there has always been an existent threat in the waterways, seaports, airports and borders, the government buckled down after the man-made disaster that is referred to as 9/11. A Homeland Security degree is designed to instruct undergraduate students on how the nation secures areas in the nation where risks are present. In addition to learning about securing techniques, the program will teach students how to prepare for a natural or man-made disaster and how to respond to said disasters. Another very important topic covered when studying Homeland Security is technology. Law enforcement agencies and government task forces use a variety of technological tools for intelligence purposes so that disasters can be prevented. Having a broad understanding of the safety issues that exist is the key focus, but intelligence sharing and analysis has also become a huge focus as more and more agencies rely on intelligence. Now that you understand what you will learn as a student pursuing a Bachelor’s degree, the next step is learning what you can do with your degree. The demand for employees in the private and the public sector of Homeland Security is on the rise. You may be qualified to work in a variety of different roles in private security and emergency management, or you may want to use your degree to pursue a public position. Some of the different settings that you can work in with your degree include: Air Marshals, Drug Enforcement Agency, Secret Service, Federal Bureau of Investigation, local law enforcement, customs, border patrol, special agency or airports. You average salary and the qualifications for employment will depend on the setting you would like to work in and what your role will be. If you are trying to choose an occupation that is rewarding and high in demand, Homeland Security may be a good choice. One thing that the government always invests in is security that will keep the nation safe from disasters. There are a variety of different occupations that you can pursue within this field, and many of the positions, like law enforcement agents and intelligence analysts, are high in demand.Find out which professionals in security are desired publicly and privately, and use this information to select a degree path.
  • What is a Prepper?

    A prepper is anyone with a sense of responsibility to take care of their family during a difficult or catastrophic time. Preppers are ready for anything that comes their way, including natural disasters and other uncontrollable events. They can easily survive longer than non-preppers because they possess the skills and knowledge necessary to do so. They believe it is their duty to protect their families should their normal lives be disrupted. Preppers are equipped to face a number of emergencies, ranging from earthquakes and hurricanes to an economic collapse. They are able to sustain the lives of their family members when weather conditions or other tragedies limit their resources. They are able to adapt to difficult situations, and they can provide their loved ones with safety and security during times of uncertainty. Preppers make sure they have sufficient food, water, and supplies to survive if calamity strikes. There are countless reasons why people become preppers, one of which being the fact that grocery stores will not have adequate supplies available if a disaster or pandemic occurs. Once the shelves are empty each person will be responsible for finding their own food. This is a huge problem if you only have enough food in your cabinets to last a week. Water will also be scarce during a tragic event, and finding clean drinking water will not be easy. It will also be extremely difficult to obtain first aid supplies and other essential items. The government cannot always be counted on for emergency assistance, which is another reason many people emphasize preparedness in their homes. While the American government does its best to give aid to people affected by disasters, there is no guarantee that they will make it to your family quickly. If the entire country is affected by a crisis they may not make it to your family at all. The need for assistance could be too great, and their resources may not allow them to help everyone. Preppers are more likely to survive widespread catastrophic events because they are not dependent on the government. It is no secret that the United States’ economy has been rocky over the past several years. For many people that is a very good reason to become a prepper. It is a good idea to be prepared in case our economy collapses completely. There is always the possibility that an event similar to the Great Depression could occur, and no one wants to be caught off-guard. Preppers will be ready to face times of uncertainty like this, while other families will struggle to put food on their tables. Bad things happen when you least expect them. This is the most obvious reason to be prepared for the worst case scenario. Whether a slightly tragic event occurs or a catastrophic one, preppers believe preparedness is the greatest tool you can possess.
  • What is an Emergency Medical Technician?

    According to the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians, there are actually four levels of emergency medical technicians, or EMTs. Emergency medical responders are the lowest ranking EMTs. They can help with transport and provide the most basic of interventions, but typically are not qualified to be a primary caregiver at an accident scene. On the second rung of the ladder, emergency medical technicians are able to offer additional noninvasive interventions and are better trained in safe transport. Advanced emergency medical technicians are allowed to perform high-benefit, low risk advanced interventions. Paramedics, sometimes called EMT-Ps, have the most extensive skill set. They can operate complex medical equipment and conduct a wide array of medical interventions, including those that call for medications and invasive techniques. Requirements for EMTs are typically set by the individual states; not every jurisdiction uses the same terms, rankings or requirements. Aspiring medics should check with their jurisdiction for details. Licensure at the initial levels of emergency medical technicians typically requires that EMTs begin as the bottom of the emergency personnel ladder and progress through the ranks as they gain experience and complete additional education. Many community colleges offer non-degree programs for EMTs. In order to become certified paramedics, students must have a substantial amount of field experience, earn an associate or bachelor’s degree from a nationally accredited program, and pass the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technician exam. The nature of the job means there is no typical day for EMTs. Whether they work for a fire department, private ambulance service, hospital or local government, EMTs will spend at least a portion of their day on the paperwork and other chores that keep their organization running smoothly. Continuing education is also a common task. But, responding to an emergency takes precedence. EMTs can be called to the scene of a car accident, a fire, a sudden illness or even an unexpected childbirth. Night or day, they must always be prepared to offer assistance at a moment’s notice. With lives sometimes hanging in the balance, it is an incredibly intense job that can be very hazardous since EMTs often work in less than ideal circumstances with upset, highly emotional people.
  • What Kind of Internship is Good for Bachelor of Emergency Management Students?

    A Bachelor of Emergency Management program prepares students for a career as a first responder such as an emergency medical technician, fire fighter, or to work with an emergency management organization, such as FEMA. Coursework focuses on planning and preparedness in emergency situations, managing emergency response operations, and principles of emergency management. Finding a good internship while you are finishing your degree in Emergency Management will not only give you hands-on experience in the field, but will show potential employers your dedication to the career path. There are a variety of internships that would be beneficial for a student in an Emergency Management program. In order to choose an internship, it is helpful to have an idea of a career path. For example, if you know you would like to work at a fire department, getting an internship at a firehouse would be ideal. Or if you would like to work with FEMA, an internship in a local, public emergency organization would give you good experience. Your local emergency services are a good place to look for internship opportunities in Emergency Management. Since the degree program trains men and women to be first responders and emergency services leaders, an internship with people who manage emergencies gives insight into the kind of work you will be doing after graduation. Contact local emergency services for information about available internships. In addition to being able to give details on internships, emergency services employees may have suggestions for internships that might be particularly helpful for your intended career. The Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) has a program in place for internships for both current students and recent graduates, which provides valuable information for students looking for a career in emergency management. Your time in college is to prepare you for your future career. An internship can be valuable to give you practical experience in the field, and looks good on your resume after graduation. Finding an internship with a local emergency service that is related to the kind of work you want to do will give you the best insight into a future career, and when you graduate, you’ll be ready to jump into your dream career in Emergency Management.
  • What is the Best Minor to Complement an Emergency Management Degree?

    The first minor that could help to complement your emergency management degree would be law enforcement. When getting an emergency management degree minor focus in law enforcement will help to provide someone with the education to work in law enforcement after graduate. Emergency management majors are frequently hired by national law enforcement agencies, including the FBI and Homeland Security to complete a wide range of jobs. Those that get a minor in law enforcement will receive the basic education necessary to ensure that they will be able to start working in a law enforcement role. Another great minor that would complement an emergency management degree would be nursing or emergency medicine. Emergency management professionals are often hired by hospitals and other emergency services to ensure that people are take care of in the event of an emergency. Those that are looking to advance their career in this field should also try to get some form of a medical background. Some of the best minors that go along with an emergency management degree include nursing and EMT training, which will give anyone some basic medical training. This can allow someone to be certified to perform CPR and could help to ensure that they will be prepared to take care of an injured person during an emergency. Another minor that would benefit someone that is getting a degree in emergency management would be business or accounting. Many emergency management professionals are hired by private companies, which then provide emergency services to local communities or corporations. These companies are just like any other business is that they will have to manage their books and accounting. If you have an education background in accounting or finance, you will have the basic knowledge necessary to handle the company’s books. This will make you a very attractive hire, particularly to those companies that want someone to be able to complete both the emergency management tasks and the accounting services. For those that are looking to advance their career, getting a minor in management or leadership will be a good complement to having an emergency management degree. When taking management and leadership courses, you will learn the basic skills necessary to manage individuals and lead groups of people. Those that have a degree or minor in one of these fields will have a much better chance of ultimately getting a management position at a hospital or private company that provides emergency management services. In conclusion, getting an emergency management degree could be a great education option. When getting an emergency management degree minor options provided by the school could end up being a great complement, which will help to make anyone’s overall education more well-rounded.
  • What Kind of Degree Do I Need to Learn How to Retrofit Buildings to Prepare for Disasters?

    According to the United States Department of Energy in a presentation with the Pacific Gas and Electric Company, there are a variety of jobs involved with the retrofitting of buildings that may include building performance retrofit specialists, energy auditors, project managers, building controls technicians, and compliance analysts. Most commonly, the type of degree required to work with the retrofitting of buildings as far as seismic activity is concerned is that of a civil engineer. A civil engineer works with expansive projects that vary from buildings and airports to roads in bridges. In addition, a civil engineer might become involved in building tunnels and dams, which must often be designed with seismic activity in mind. The average civil engineer will require a bachelor’s degree and will need to accumulate experience on a work site under the tutelage of an experienced engineer before being offered the chance to lead a project as the head civil engineer. The prospect of a managerial position is greatly enhanced by the addition of a graduate degree, and many civil engineers will remain in school to obtain a master’s degree that can put them on the fast track to promotion. Working as a civil engineer invites strong potential for job growth and the more training that a student obtains, the greater potential for higher earnings. Civil engineers may work hand-in-hand with related occupations such as urban planners and architects to ensure that a building’s initial construction or retrofitting complies with the standards required to maintain a safe environment in the event of an earthquake. The concept of retrofitting for reasons of environmental safety and conservation is a hot topic in the United States today with several world leaders becoming involved in discussions on how to ensure the safety of buildings. The United States government has even been getting involved with a group called the “Jobs and Competitiveness Council” suggesting that retrofitting could help reduce the impact of the jobs crisis. Civil engineers and individuals with related training will usually need to consider looking at the “green” industry for employment as many of the jobs for building retrofitting have been offered under the banner of jobs initiatives and retraining programs designed by the government both domestically and overseas. Retrofitting is an essential and vital part of today’s construction industry. With attention from government sources and a focus upon the development of educational programs that deal with retrofitting, individuals who choose to train in this area should be able to enjoy healthy career potential and advancement. Getting a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering is an important consideration for anyone wishing to work with retrofitting buildings for potential disaster.