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Security & Emergency Managers

Career Overview

Safety and Security Emergency Managers work in both an office and hands on at a host of crisis, disaster, and emergency scenes. Graduates will be competent in the principles and concepts of organizing an incident command center for man-made and natural disasters. A larger portion of the daily routine for an emergency manager surrounds generating emergency preparedness plans and evacuation procedures for a specified geographic area, or disaster scenario. Safety and Security Emergency Managers can also work as administrators in a governmental county or state entity, or travel to regional areas training the various emergency services department, which serve a community.


Emergency managers work with, and supervise government staff, and members of the fire, police, and ambulance services to ensure a heightened level of public safety and organized combination of resources during a disaster. The professional first responder spends many hours each day documenting the training and certifications of department staff, as well as monitoring potential crisis scenarios and required security measures to prevent injuries and loss equipment should a disaster occur. A safety and security emergency manager must be well versed in the technology used by emergency service providers, and routinely test the radios and related equipment for quality and durability. Computers and digital cameras are also mainstays for emergency managers, used to share information and photos with other departments and for online training seminars.

Educational Requirements

A safety and security emergency management curriculum is also commonly referred to as emergency and disaster management. Regardless of the degree title wording used by a particular college, the standard courses required to complete the degree are identical in nature. A degree in this field will take approximately four years to complete, dependant upon the number of semester hours a student registers for at the chosen college. Core coursework for this degree consists of natural disaster response, antiterrorism, fire service procedures, deployment of emergency services principles, introduction to forensics, disaster planning, psychology, sociology, chemical disaster procedures, biological hazards, search and rescue training, disposal of weapons and explosives, introduction to forestry services, environmental science, public policy, emergency medical special operations, consequence management, homeland security procedures, disaster incident command, analysis, emergency planning, risk communications, radiological hazards, foundations of hazardous materials, border and coastal security, concepts of quarantine, port and waterway security, weapons of mass destruction principles, and emergency response to terrorism.

Three specified Bachelor of Science degree programs exist for individuals interested in a safety and security emergency management career. In addition to earning a four-year degree in the field, a weapons of mass destruction certification course can also be taken upon graduation.

Areas of Specialization

Safety and Security Emergency Managers can specialize in a specific area in the first responders and related service field. Areas of specialization include:

Emergency and Disaster Management
By working specifically in the disaster preparedness and incident command arena, Managers in this area develop crisis plans and training of a network of emergency agencies and personnel. Grant writing duties are also a common task for this are of emergency management, to secure funds for needed equipment and response vehicles.

Homeland Security
By working in the department of homeland security, as an instructor, border agent team either leader, or an administrator. The emergency manager would be securing a specified area, or training and supervising agents and officers in matters of hazardous materials and counter-terrorism techniques and tactical maneuvers.

Fire Science Management
By working a county or state level emergency management office as an administrator. The primary duties in this area of specialization would be the continuing education of multiple first responder agencies, and the development of evacuation and aid plans for both man-made and natural disasters.

Career Opportunities

The list below is a sampling of possible career paths and titles for Safety and Security Emergency Managers.

  • Emergency Management Agency Administrator
  • Department of Homeland Security Administrator
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation staff or Administrator
  • National Fire Academy Instructor
  • Forestry Services Administrator or Director
  • Urban Search and Rescue Team Leader or Trainer
  • Counter-Terrorism Task Force Team Leader
  • Hazardous Materials Team Leader or Trainer
  • Prevention and Risk Assessment Administrator

Salary Ranges

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of May 2006, introductory management positions in the protective service field earned a minimum of $20.95 per hour, or an annual income of $70, 860. The top salary in this field, presented to upper-level managers and administrators averaged $114,300 per year. According to the available statistics, the field of safety and security emergency management positions with state and federal governmental agencies are the largest segment in the this degree field. Positions within a socialized governmental agency garner a $75,990 salary annually. Emergency management careers with a federal agency proved a $36.81 per hour wage, totaling a $90,460 annual salary.

Professional Organizations

IAEM -International Association of Emergency Managers

NEMA- National Emergency Management Association

FEMA – Federal Emergency Management

AMS – American Department of Homeland Security