An emergency management education is key to being an emergency management professional, but becoming a professional in the field involves more than just attending classes. It is critical that emergency management majors seek additional professional development--attend training, gain experience, develop your networks, and get ready for life after graduation. Our major map can help you ensure that you are on track with the classes you need to graduate, AND provide ideas and timelines in these other areas of professional development as well. Meet with your academic advisor early and often to make and implement a personal development plan to complement your coursework.
Emergency Management Major Map
What You Can Do with an Emergency Management Degree
Numerous career opportunities are available to those graduating with an emergency management major. Positions are available at all levels of government including city, county, state, and federal. A wide variety of local, national, and international voluntary organizations routinely hire people trained in emergency management, and there is increasing emphasis on hiring emergency managers in the private, business sector.
Recent program graduates found employment as a regional emergency planner, homeland security planner, hospital emergency manager, emergency manager with the National Guard, disaster insurance adjuster and academic associate for an emergency management program in the southwest.
Learn more about Emergency Management as a career path:
The Bureau of Labor Statistics information about emergency management including sectors that emergency managers are employed in, pay, and projected growth of employment in emergency management.
Many undergraduates also have chosen to go on for a master's degree. In light of the continuing need to manage natural and technological disasters and current homeland security issues, there will be an increasing need for educated and highly skilled emergency managers.
Of note, just as with any degree program in higher education, an emergency management student does not graduate and necessarily go on to be an emergency manager. Many graduates from our degree program go on to work in fields outside of emergency management. The skills and knowledge acquired through our undergraduate degree program in emergency management are highly marketable to other professions and fields.
For instance, all undergraduate courses emphasize written and oral communication--highly valued skills in virtually any field. Undergraduate coursework also provides students multiple opportunities to engage in collaborative, cooperative activity, demonstrate leadership, hone the ability to conduct critical analysis, find, synthesize, and integrate information from multiple sources, and develop and implement projects. Each of these skills are highly sought after by those hiring in the public, private, and nongovernmental sectors.
NDSU's Emergency Management Program believes that internships are part of a well-rounded education. Internships are important in that they aid in the development of practical skills and abilities and help students develop working relationships with professionals in the field. Students participating in internship opportunities gain valuable experience and are more viable as job candidates upon graduation. The program strives to create internship opportunities that meet individual students' needs.
Examples of organizations with which Emergency Management students have completed internships include:
- North Dakota Department of Emergency Services
- Gate City Bank
- Countless County Emergency Management Offices in Minnesota, North Dakota, and beyond
- City of Fargo Emergency Management
- Fargo Public Schools
- West Fargo School District
- The Federal Emergency Management Agency's Emergency Management Institute
- CETERO Research
- University of Minnesota
- Lutheran Disaster Response
- Fargo Marathon
- Fargo Lions
- Fargo YWCA
- International Association of Emergency Managers--US Council
- Florida Department of Emergency Management
For more information on setting up an internship, contact the Internship Coordinator, Carol Cwiak, via phone at (701) 231-5847 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are a variety of organizations that need volunteers to help with the disaster-related services they provide. Regardless of whether you have completed an internship, are a a major/minor in emergency management, or have already graduated, you can get involved in helping your local community respond to and recovery from hazard events! The Red Cross and Salvation Army are two examples of organizations with which you could volunteer.
The Red Cross:
The local chapter of the Red Cross, the Minn-kota Red Cross Chapter, needs your help. If you want to join their Disaster Action Team, you will need to take a couple of initial steps. First, go through the Online Orientation that will provide an overview of the work that volunteers do with the Red Cross. Second, view the Introduction to Disaster Services video that shows you some of the work disaster volunteers perform on site and behind the scenes. Once you have taken these initial steps you can visit the local Red Cross website to see available courses and training dates. You can sign up for these courses by contacting the chapter at 701-364-1800. Disaster courses are held at the Minn-Kota Chapter unless otherwise noted. Once complete, members of the team may be deployed to disasters locally and in the U.S. Whenever there is a disaster, you are given the choice as to whether you are available for deployment. Deployments typically last 2-4 weeks.
If you are interested in volunteering with the Salvation Army, you first need to complete a volunteer application. After completing a volunteer application, you will need to complete one or more training courses (depending on how involved you want to be in the delivery of disaster services and the role you want to play). The local chapter of the Salvation Army offers volunteer training regularly. Some training that you could take to prepare for volunteer work includes: Intro to Emergency Disaster Services, Food Service and Handling, International Deployment, Emotional and Spiritual Care, Incident Command System, Operations, Disaster Social Services, Public Information Officer, Medic First Aid, and more. Learn more about available courses and upcoming training dates.