Brief Overview of "Fire Science Degree" Programs
Assistant Professor Michael J. Ward
The George Washington University
There is a huge amount of diversity in "fire science" academic programs. From community college credit for Firefighter I to graduate engineering and hard science PhDs from a research-oriented university.
TWO YEAR COMMUNITY COLLEGE FIRE SCIENCE PROGRAMS
Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degrees are designed for a student to complete in PREPARATION for a career in a craft or trade (hospitality, allied medical technicians, mechanic, computer technician, business office skills, realtor, etc.) In general, completing an AAS in Fire Science DOES NOT increase your chances of getting hired.
AAS degrees are considered terminal degrees – that means they are NOT designed to prepare you to progress to a bachelor degree.
Here are some online community college fire science programs:
University of Cinncinati: http://www.uc.edu/programs/viewprog.asp?progid=2557
Pikes Peak Community College: http://www.ppcc.edu/Academics/Departments/FireScience/
Chemeketa Community College:
FOUR-YEAR FIRE SCIENCE DEGREE PROGRAMS
There are three flavors of a four-year "fire science" bachelor degree.
The most academic challenging is the Fire Protection Engineering degree that is offered at the University of Maryland (College Park http://www.enfp.umd.edu/ ) and the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (Worcester, MA). These degrees are similar to civil, mechanical or electrical engineering programs with two years of higher level math, one to two years of hard science and about twenty engineering courses.
Completion of the program qualifies you to start working as a Engineer-In-Training (EIT) and eventually becoming certified as a Professional Engineer. Both universities offer Masters of FPE.
One of the undergraduate degrees offered by the University of New Haven is for Fire Protection Engineering, but it appears NOT accredited by the appropriate engineering council. http://www.newhaven.edu/psps/firescience.html
New Haven is the only institution to offer a Master's in Fire Science
Many four-year fire science degrees fall into the technology arena - not as academically robust as an engineering degree. You receive a Bachelor of Science in Fire Technology degree (or similar title). You will have taken more math/science/engineering technology classes than the next flavor of degree, but you will not be prepared to sit for the Engineer-In-Training program or become a registered Professional Engineer.
Fire Technology bachelor programs include:
Oklahoma State University: http://fpst.okstate.edu/
Eastern Kentucky University: http://www.fireandsafety.eku.edu/
University of New Haven: http://www.newhaven.edu/psps/firescience.html
John Jay College (NYC): http://web.jjay.cuny.edu/~firesci/
University of Akron (OH): http://sc.uakron.edu/?/publicservice/fp.html
University of North Carolina Charlotte: http://www.et.uncc.edu/fire_safety/index.html
Thomas Edison State College (NJ): http://www.tesc.edu/prospective/unde...gree/bsast.php
The third flavor is a four-year non-technology emergency service degree that will lead to a Bachelors in management, supervision. leadership, emergency services, you-name-it. Usually requires a year of english, a year of college level math and whatever other general education requirements are needed by that educational institution. Many are offered through distance education and most assume that the student has some emergency service experience.
Emergency service degrees include:
University of Maryland University College [ONLINE]: http://www.umuc.edu/prog/ugp/majors/fscn.shtml
Maryland is one of seven campuses running the NFA Degree-at-a-Distance program: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/training/nf...rams/distance/
University of Richmond (emergency management): http://oncampus.richmond.edu/academics/scs/emermgmt/
University of Florida [ONLINE]: http://www.bcn.ufl.edu/pde/Fire-html/
Eastern Oregon University: http://www.eou.edu/dde/Degrees/FSA.htm
Arizona State University East [SOME ONLINE FOR ARIZONA STUDENTS]: http://www.east.asu.edu/ctas/imt/fire/res_bas.htm
California State University Los Angeles: http://www.calstatela.edu/academic/e.../et/tech/fire/ pdf brochure
Holy Family University (Philadelphia) http://www.holyfamily.edu/academics/undergrad.shtml
Lake Superior State University (MI) http://www.lssu.edu/degrees/degree.php?id=5066
New Jersey City University: http://www.njcu.edu/dept/ProfStudies...rescience.html
Arkansas Tech University (FEMA Emergency Management): http://commed.atu.edu/eamdegree.htm
Western Carolina University (FEMA Emergency Management ONLINE): http://www.wcu.edu/aps/cj/CJ_courses_EM-distance.htm
Anna Maria College (Paxton, MA) http://www.annamaria.edu/academics/a...tm#firescience
Charter Oak State College (New Britain, CT): http://www.cosc.edu/
Utah Valley State College http://www.uvsc.edu/catalog/displayP...?programid=131
UVSC has an associate fire science program linked with UT Fire and Rescue Academy
University of Idaho (Fire Ecology minor) http://www.cnrhome.uidaho.edu/default.aspx?pid=42088
Two universities offer bachelor degrees in EMS leadership/management that only require EMT-Basic certification:
George Washington University [ONLINE]: http://www.gwumc.edu/healthsci/Programs/ehs/ehs_bs.htm
University of Maryland Baltimore County: http://ehs.umbc.edu/
There are other programs, check the following websites:
National Fire Academy “Accredited Colleges and Universities”: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/training/nf...d_college.shtm
FEMA’s EMI Higher Education Project:
11 institutions offer a bachelor of emergency management: