With an online Bachelor of Fire Science degree, many employment opportunities will be available to you. Do you have an interest in fighting fires, determining the cause or perhaps, investigating the criminal act of arson? Would you like to investigate fatal fires or study the physics related to fire? An online bachelor’s degree in this field will help you obtain an entry-level job, in addition to, prepare you for a management position as you work your way up the “fire truck” ladder, so to speak.
The job growth rate for firefighters is expected to increase by seven percent between 2016 and 2026. A similar growth rate of 6% is expected for other positions as well, such as fire investigators or inspectors.
To obtain the best positions and the likelihood of being hired, one must be physically and emotionally fit to endure the long hours and stressful work conditions. EMT paramedic training will also increase your chances for employment, although it is very often a requirement.
Perhaps the most popular career in the field of fire science is that of the firefighter. The average salary of a firefighter depends on a variety of factors, however, as of May 2017, the BLS reports the median annual wage was $49,080. Firefighters are usually the first ones on the scene of a fire. They are responsible for saving lives and extinguishing fires as soon as possible. As a first responder, you will need to know how to appropriately administer medical treatment until an ambulance arrives. Firefighters often need to contain forest fires and respond to vehicle accidents.
Fire inspectors and fire investigators earned an average salary of $56,130 annually, as of May 2017. Inspectors are tasked with preventing fires from happening in the first place by inspecting buildings and their fire systems. They often check for outdated fire extinguishers and look for hazardous material that are stored improperly. Inspectors also check alarm systems, sprinkler systems and assess evacuation plans.
Fire investigators check fire scenes and determine where the source of the fire began. Most fire investigators and inspectors begin their careers as firefighters. As an investigator, coursework in psychology is very helpful in studying the mind of the arsonist to determine pattern, methods and motivation. Consulting positions are also available with your online Bachelor of Fire Science degree. Those working in a supervisory position can earn upwards of $72,000 or more per year.
Other important roles to acquire in fire science is that of the fire safety director, driver engineer or fire equipment operator, lieutenant, captain, battalion chief, assistant chief, as well as the fire chief, fire marshal or smoke jumper. Most employers will require or prefer you to have an online Bachelor of Fire Science degree.
So, what will your work environment be like? Well, it goes without saying that fighting fires is a hot job. Firefighters must fight heat exhaustion themselves while fighting fires when wearing the heavy protective gear and respiratory protection that is required. You may choose to work at your city’s or county’s fire department, for government agencies, factories, airports, parks departments, or, with insurance companies, law enforcement or lawyer’s offices. Most firemen work 24 hour shifts as they sleep, eat and perhaps do a little housekeeping, while waiting on the next emergency.
If you would like to learn more about this field, please check out our choices for the Best Online Schools for Bachelor in Fire Science Degree Programs.