Top 7 Career Tracks with a Bachelor’s Degree in Emergency Management
Considering a bachelor’s in emergency management? Saint Leo University explores seven rewarding career tracks students may pursue with this degree.
Emergency management encompasses four distinct actions: identifying major threats to the organization or area, taking steps to reduce the damage or destruction of these threats should they occur, preparing the necessary people or officials to respond to the incident, and having a plan in place for post-emergency recovery.
Getting your bachelor’s degree in emergency management can provide the knowledge and skills needed to perform these types of duties. It also helps you obtain the qualifications required for top emergency management career tracks such as these.
Professionals in this high-level position are tasked with creating plans to prepare for and respond to major emergencies, such as hurricanes and tornadoes. They can work for cities, counties, states, or even the country as a whole. A director works with other organizations that are a part of emergency plans, from local private companies to public safety officials. In the event of an emergency, the director would also analyze the damage, apply for federal funding, and work to keep important services open during the recovery period.
The goal of a community preparedness coordinator is to develop plans to protect a city or town as much as possible from a major emergency. This generally involves making sure certain resources are in place to be available during recovery, such as food and designating where shelters will be set up. It also involves keeping the safety and welfare of the community in mind when an emergency is being dealt with.
Another option is to use your bachelor’s in emergency management to pursue a career as a crisis response specialist. Individuals in this role are tasked with helping individuals in times of crisis. Job duties typically involve determining the type of help the person might need as a result of their situation or a traumatic event, then connecting them with available resources and programs. You can find crisis response specialist positions in businesses, schools, medical facilities, and a number of other areas.
You can also use your degree in emergency management to serve in a consultant role, providing advice to companies or governmental entities. Organizations may hire a disaster services consultant if they don’t have a dedicated emergency management team but would like to be fully prepared should a disaster or major event cause damage to the business or area. This professional could help devise a preparedness and response plan, also ensuring that the necessary people involved in the plan are fully trained.
Maybe you have a passion for making workplaces as safe as possible. In that case, why not use your bachelor’s in emergency management as an environmental safety specialist? The main responsibility of someone in this position is to make sure a company's activities do not harm the environment, its employees, or the public at large. This requires staying current on all the laws and regulations involving hazardous materials, in addition to being up to date on actions the company can take to reduce its environmental impact.
This is a good career option for someone interested in being in the center of a disaster response. As team lead, you would be in charge of making sure the emergency response plan is executed as written and that every step is followed. This involves, in part, making sure your team has the training required to respond to the emergency safely and effectively, also checking in with them regularly during the response to ensure that they are okay.
What sets this career track apart is, instead of preparing for many different types of disasters, someone in this position is tasked with developing a preparedness and recovery plan for just one type of emergency: hurricanes. Of course, using your degree in emergency management for this role requires that you work in an area threatened by hurricanes, such as the eastern or southern coast of the U.S.
All of these careers can be rewarding in that you would play an active role in keeping people as safe as possible in the event of a natural disaster or other emergency situation. Your response plan can also help them recover at a faster pace by having the right individuals and agencies in place for a speedy response.
If you’re ready to get started, Saint Leo University offers a bachelor's degree in emergency management. This 120-credit hour online degree program provides the knowledge and skills needed to work in this important field. Students enrolled in this 4-year program also have the option to pursue a concentration in fire science, enabling you to specialize in this area of emergency management if you wish.