Emergency management organizations are tasked with creating and implementing plans during times of emergency- such as natural disasters like floods, severe snow storms and tornadoes, as well as man-made disasters like oil spills, terrorism, cyber attacks and other incidents involving hazardous materials that pose a risk to the public. Emergency management positions are some of the fastest growing jobs in the country, according to a report done by the Labor of Bureau Statistics – with an expected growth rate of about 22% through 2018.
North Dakota is one of the fastest growing states in the entire country in terms of population, due to its low levels of unemployment, size (much of which is rural,) and affordability of living. When considering the population spike in the state of North Dakota, as well as the demand for emergency management professionals all around the country, the city of Grand Forks (the state’s second-largest metropolitan area) offers opportunity. The state has been ranked as the third highest concentration of emergency management professionals per capita.
Emergency Management Degrees, Training and Certification in Grand Forks
Degrees: All emergency management careers require that an applicant have a degree in a field closely, if not directly, related to emergency management. Also, most positions also require that a person complete a set amount of training in emergency management and disaster preparedness, as well as certification in the field. Most emergency management degrees can be obtained via online schooling in North Dakota. These degrees include the following:
- Bachelor of arts in emergency management, with a multidisciplinary minor
- Master’s degree in Emergency Management
- Ph.D. in Emergency Management
Emergency Management Training and Certification: The primary entity responsible for training and offering certification in emergency management is the North Dakota Emergency Management Association (NDEMA.) This organization offers training in all aspects of emergency management theory- from the most basic fundamentals to the most complex practices, plans and exercises. The NDEMA offers three types of emergency management certification, which all depends on how experienced the person seeking certification is. The first level is available to people that have at least one year of experience in emergency management, while the second level is only available to those with at least three years of experience in emergency management. The last level is available to those with at least five years of emergency management experience and attendance at two NDEMA conferences during the last three years.
Emergency Management In Action
The primary city-level provider of emergency services is the City of Grand Forks Office of Emergency Management. The office is responsible for coordinating efforts between hospitals, firefighters, paramedics and local law enforcement, and ensuring that all are on the same page when an emergency situation happens. The office also coordinates with county, state and federal agencies in relation to emergency management, disaster relief and homeland security. The largest concern for emergency management professionals in the Grand Forks area is hazardous materials handling, as North Dakota is at the forefront of domestic oil and chemical production.