In a Bachelor of Public Safety Administration program, students develop a deeper understanding of the management of public safety, with an emphasis on planning, research and leadership practices. These programs are often designed for individuals who have already earned an associate's degree and who have established careers in law enforcement, emergency management, firefighting, criminal justice or a related career. These degree programs also provide students without any previous public safety work experience the education needed to seek entry-level positions within these career fields. However, many law enforcement, emergency management and firefighting positions require completion of job-specific training programs and subsequent certification or licensure.
Bachelor's of Public Safety
A public safety administration degree program combines general management content with classes in business administration, leadership and fiscal management. The program teaches students how to apply this training to law enforcement, corrections, fire science, homeland security or disaster relief. These courses may include:
- Homeland security
- Business management
- Effective communication
- Ethics in the justice system
- Hazardous materials management
Popular Career Options
Graduates of a bachelor's degree program in public safety administration or a similar program may qualify for federal law enforcement positions, including in homeland security. Also, other safety and law enforcement organizations may require a bachelor's degree for employees seeking promotion into management positions. Graduates may pursue careers such as federal agent, fire chief, emergency management coordinator, and patrol officer or supervisor.
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
Based on reports from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of police and detectives, including federal law enforcement agents, should increase by four percent between 2014 and 2024 (www.bls.gov). A five percent increase is projected for firefighters during the same decade.
As of May 2015, the BLS estimated that patrol officers earned an average yearly salary of $61,270. Supervisors of firefighting and prevention workers received $74,970 in average annual compensation, while emergency management directors averaged $73,750 per year.
Students who go for a Bachelor of Public Safety Administration degree are ones who already have experience in the field and have an associate's degree. The types of courses that are included in this degree are homeland security, business management and ethics in the justice system.