In the old days, the only real requirement to become a firefighter was a high school diploma. But just like everything else, getting a college education is a serious leg up in a competitive world. And in this industry, a Fire Science Degree will only bring you higher up the ladder.
According to the Las Vegas Sun, in 2013 the Las Vegas Fire Department received 500 applications for 24 positions in just 24 minutes. When you’re one of the (first) 500, you need something to help your resume feel more unique.
That’s why many people who are interested in getting into the fire protection world are starting to obtain degrees in fire sciences. But they’re not just learning how to spray a hose. They’re learning about safety education, fire prevention, and emergency management skills.
The U.S. Fire Administration shows a steady decline in the amount of fires America experiences year after year. While that might seem like bad business for people in the fire-industry, it actually means we’re doing a better job all the time!
So what types of fire and emergency services in higher education are there? Well, it’s not just firefighters.
There are all sorts of different degrees you can obtain in the fire sciences that can lead you down all sorts of different paths in the fire and life safety world.
Here’s just a small list of some of the kinds of bachelor of science and master’s programs you can become a part of:
And that’s just to name a few. Of course, all of these can be pursued through their respective master’s programs. But of course, being a firefighter isn’t the only thing you can do with a degree in the fire sciences.
We’ve already seen that the rate of fires is steadily going down (thank goodness), but that doesn’t mean we don’t need firefighters. And it’s not just because of firefighters. It’s because of better building inspections and sprinkler systems, and better education.
It also means that firefighters aren’t our only resource in the battle to keep ourselves safe from the threat of fire. Fire science programs prepare students not only to fight fires but to educate and better serve the public.
We’ve already discussed that being a firefighter isn’t the only path to keeping your community safe from fire. Today’s fire science programs give students the highly specialized knowledge to become experts in fire safety, fire prevention, fire suppression, emergency response, fire and arson protection, and so much more. So what other jobs are out there for those people interested in getting involved in the fire sciences?
People who get their BS in fire science generally do it to bolster their resume when trying to become a firefighter. But that’s not the only thing you can do with it. “Someone with this degree also can obtain a job in professions other than firefighting. Traditional careers include firefighters, fire investigators, and fire inspectors; however, this degree can also open doors to jobs in emergency management, homeland security, and forensics.”
Of course, your degree in fire inspection can get you a job as a fire inspector, but it doesn’t end there. Other jobs you might get with your fire inspection degree include Code Inspector, Deputy Fire Marshal, or even a Fire Captain. Your degree in fire inspection is going to advance your knowledge of safety inspections and codes, and it can be a great starting point to any of these careers, as well as ones in fire safety education. Read our blog about the raw information on how inspections truly make a difference and can save lives.
Folks who get their degree in fire and arson investigation generally work in law enforcement. They are the people who go to scenes of fire and arson and determine if there is any criminal activity to blame. However, that’s not the only job you can get. Some people with a degree in fire and arson investigation actually work as self-employed consultants.
This one has a heavy emphasis on the “science” part of your fire science degree. A fire protection engineer understands the physics and chemistry behind fires; how fire combusts, how it spreads, and how to stop and prevent it. A person with a degree in fire protection engineering could review engineering and construction blueprints, perform inspections on sprinkler systems in homes and buildings, as well as acting as a consultant for factories and other businesses on how to improve their fire safety measures.
People who get their degree in fire science administration generally do so to become part of the administration team in a fire department. This could include the chief, but it could really be any part of the administrative staff. They would help to organize their team, and to make sure they do their job safely and effectively.
This is a career path that is about fire safety, but perhaps even more about keeping the people who help to fight and prevent fires safely. They might work with firefighters or any other kind of emergency response team.
You’ve probably heard of the digital university called “Purdue”. Did you know that the US Fire Administration considers them as an official fire and emergency services higher education institution? They have great programs for all sorts of different online fire science degree programs including fire and emergency management. This is a degree for those who wish to become emergency responders. This could also include things outside of fire-related emergencies, such as natural disasters, or even terrorism.
If you’re considering furthering your education with a fire science degree and you’re waiting for some kind of sign, let this be it! The world of fire safety and prevention is advancing all the time, and our education has to follow suit.
Every day we gain more knowledge about how to prevent fires and keep those affected by fires and other natural disasters safe. Don’t get lost in the 500 resumes sent to the fire department. Fire safety is serious business, and our knowledge of fire safety needs to be serious, too.Tags: education, fire and life safety inspection industry, fire and life safety inspections, fire inspection, fire science, fire science degree