What Is Emergency Management?

Emergency management is the strategic and planned response to crisis situations.  Many disasters happen both from natural causes and man-made causes, so proper training and organization is needed.  Most organizations follow certain phases when planning and preparing for disasters.  The phases include mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery.  Mitigation is working to reduce the chances of a disaster happening. 

Preparedness is ensuring plans, supplies, and training is ready in case a disaster does strike.  Response is putting the plans, supplies, and training to in action when a disaster does happen.  Recovery is working to restore the affected area back to its previous state. Then the next phase is back to mitigation to start to review what happened, work on how to improve the current situation, and improve on plans; so that a disaster does not happen again, and a team will be better prepared to deal with the situation.  The need for individuals who can work in this type of environment is at an all-time high.  Emergency management came under the microscope after Hurricane Katrina and better preparedness was sorely needed.  There are many reasons why emergency management is needed: floods, earthquakes, tornadoes, terrorist acts, tsunamis, hurricanes, and other man-made disasters.  One way to get into this field is to earn an emergency management degree.

Where can I get an Emergency Management Degree?

There are now more and more schools that are starting to offer an emergency management degree. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has led the way in helping schools develop curriculums for earning this degree.  FEMA developed the Emergency Management Higher Education Program to promote emergency management education for students interested in becoming emergency managers and other positions within FEMA.  FEMA has partnered with many schools to offer classes and instruction that follow the program.  There are also many online universities that have started to offer the degree.

What courses do I have to take to earn an Emergency Management Degree?

The main goal of the Emergency Management Higher Education Program is to work with colleges and universities to create an emergency management program to sustain, replicate capability, and reduce disaster loss through an established education program, experiential learning, practice, and experience centered on the phases of mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery.  Therefore, to earn your emergency management degree you should expect to take classes like Introduction to Emergency Management, Project Management, Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, Terrorism, Emergency Planning and Incident Management, Risk and Vulnerability Assessment, Chemistry of Hazardous Materials, Introduction to Radiological Materials, Hazardous Materials Management, Toxicology, Organizational Behavior and Management, Emergency Operations and Techniques, Mitigation Planning, Disaster Response and Recovery, Computer Applications in Emergency Management, and other related courses.

How do I pay for my Emergency Management Degree?

Students who can't afford paying for college out of their own pocket have several financial aid options to choose from.  The first is searching and applying for scholarships.  There are thousands of scholarships available.  Another option is applying for grants.  The most widely known grant is the federal government’s Pell Grant.  Both of these options are great because a student does not have to pay back these financial awards.  Lastly, a student can apply for a student loan from the government, banks, or other financial institutions.  The federal loans can be subsidized or unsubsidized.  Most of the student loans have low interest rates, repayment doesn’t start until after the student graduates, and have longer repayment periods.  If a student has several loans, he/she may have the opportunity to consolidate the loans to make repayment easier.

What can I expect after receiving my Emergency Management Degree?

There are plenty of careers available for a student with an emergency management degree.  With the degree you can have a career as an emergency program manager or director, emergency operations center manager, director of security for your organization, technical training supervisor, hospital coordinator, emergency preparedness instructor, or risk management expert.  There are many agencies you can work for too.  Individuals with an emergency management degree have the opportunity to work for organizations like FEMA, State emergency agencies, the National Guard, or the Red Cross. 

You can expect to earn a salary in the range of $31,101 to $93,837.  The range is big because there are so many positions available so trying to narrow it down is difficult.  But what is guaranteed is a job that challenges you and gives you the satisfaction that you are making a difference.  Getting an emergency management degree is a step in the right direction.


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Q:Where can I apply for emergency management jobs?

A:There are a number of organizations such as FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) that offer career opportunities in emergency management. You can apply for jobs at the homeland security department. The type of job position you may qualify for will depend upon your degree, specialization area, work experience, and state.

Q:Can you please name a few courses I will cover in an emergency management training program?

A:Emergency training programs are designed to teach students about techniques and managerial concepts used in emergency situations. The curriculum of such programs will usually entail subjects such as foundations of emergency management, leading in times of crisis, disaster response, recovery and continuity, management strategies, and more. The exact curriculum may vary slightly from institute to institute.

Q:What level of degree in emergency management can I pursue after completing my high school diploma?

A:With a high school diploma, you can pursue a degree at bachelor or associate level. Both of these programs are undergraduate programs. The main purpose of an associate degree is to provide students with a basic understanding of the field. On the other hand, a bachelor degree will cover a larger variety of subjects, also focusing on advanced level courses.

Q:What can i do with a degree in emergency management?

A:With a degree in emergency management, you can opt for careers in private and federal agencies. The homeland security department and the FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) are among the leading agencies that hire individuals with security management qualifications. You may be required to undergo further training on-the-job, depending upon which field you enter.

Q:How to get a degree in emergency management?

A:There are a number of colleges offering emergency management degree programs. You can enroll in associate, bachelor, or masters degree programs. To successfully complete a degree, you will be required to complete the entire coursework that may include theoretical subjects, practical courses, projects, and various other assignments. The degree requirements may vary slightly from college to college.

Q:What are the careers in emergency management?

A:There are a number of different careers you can pursue in emergency management. This field is attracting many individuals nowadays. There are various branches in security management that one can specialize in. The main job purpose of security professionals is to respond to emergency situations and provide support to victims.

Q:An emergency management degree online will offer what kinds of benefits?

A:If you enroll in an online emergency management degree, you will not have to worry about class timings and textbook costs. You can study from your home at times that fit your schedule. Online learning is more convenient as compared to campus based degree programs. Take a look at our page for more information.

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