How Do FEMA College Credits Work?

Written by:
Kristin Fromal

What Are FEMA Credits?

The Federal Emergency Management Administration, or FEMA, has developed a series of training courses. Offered through the Emergency Management Institute (EMI) and National Emergency Training Center (NETC), these courses are designed to train diverse emergency practitioners to save lives and properties during different types of disaster situations. These courses cover federal frameworks for preparedness and response to disasters, as well as the incident management system. First responders, such as EMT's, paramedics and fire service professionals may have taken these courses in the development of their career paths.

What are Some Classes Offered by FEMA?

Some of the specific courses offered by EMI and NETC include:

  • Disaster Field Training
  • Fundamentals for Radiological Officers
  • Earthquake Recovery and Mitigation
  • Hurricane Preparedness and Response
  • Multi-Hazard Emergency Management for Higher Education
  • Animals in Disasters
  • Civil Rights and FEMA Assistance
  • Social Media in Emergency Management

How Can I Transfer FEMA Credits?

Credits earned through taking FEMA courses are one form of alternative credit that may be accepted by universities as you are pursuing an associate's or bachelor's degree. Earning college credit through alternative means such as this can be a great way of reducing the cost of earning your college diploma. With the increasing costs of college education, various alternative credit options are important to consider.

Typically, students can request a transcript identifying their FEMA courses through the American Council of Education. This agency has analyzed specific courses offered by agencies such as FEMA and by the U.S. Military for the award of college credit. The university to which the student is applying will then review this transcript for the potential award of college credit. Each individual university will have its own policies regarding how these credits are awarded, and it may be important to discuss this directly with an advisor or registrar at the university the student is hoping to attend.

Students may also be able to receive credit for independent study classes taken through FEMA's Emergency Management Institute. Independent study course completion is evaluated through Frederick Community College. Upon the payment of a fee, the independent study will be reviewed and a transcript created. This transcript can then be forwarded to other universities for consideration as transfer credit.

Many universities have a maximum number of credits that can be earned using this review process.

What Are Common Majors for Students with FEMA Transfer Credits?

Students who have taken FEMA credits in order to develop their careers in emergency response are uniquely positioned to consider specific undergraduate majors to further pursue this area of developed expertise. At the bachelor's degree level, some relevant majors or minors that students might consider in this area include:

  • Public Administration
  • Emergency Services Management
  • Homeland Security
  • Environmental Hazards
  • Disaster Risk Reduction

Other students, particularly those with expertise as a paramedic or EMT, may wish to further their education in a range of allied health fields, earning an associate's, bachelor's or master's degree. These fast-growing career areas can provide well-paid salaries as well as options for continued job growth.