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Emergency Management Careers in Norfolk, Virginia

Being the networking center for first responders and locally-based government agencies, the Norfolk Department of Emergency Preparedness and Response is actually a fusion of two entities: the Division of Emergency Management and the Division of Emergency Communication. Working in coordination with local, state and federal agencies, the Department of Emergency Preparedness and Response keeps Norfolk residents, business leaders, and emergency response officials informed on a wide host of topics including:

  • Earthquakes
  • Hurricanes
  • Tornadoes
  • Terrorism
  • Pandemic flu
  • Severe winter weather


Planning for a Career in Emergency Management

Whatever the agency or department citizens choose to work with, applicants for emergency management jobs in Norfolk will need to have the right skills and education. From volunteers all the way up the ladder to the chief of emergency management operations, qualified candidates are needed because they will be working in situations that can mean life or death for their fellow citizens. Certification courses can be beneficial for targeted specializations, and having an emergency management degree provides candidates with a solid general foundation in the field.

There are several online and on-campus opportunities in the Norfolk area where students can gain access to an emergency management curriculum. An associate’s degree in emergency management typically includes courses on:

  • Sociology of disasters
  • Response and recovery
  • State and local government structure
  • Emergency services coordination
  • Local, state, and federal jurisdictions/laws

A bachelor’s degree in emergency management builds on these and includes additional opportunities for specialization in fields such as:

  • Terrorism
  • Severe weather events
  • Natural disasters
  • Pandemics
  • Logistics management
  • Technology and communications

Specialists working in the emergency management field can additionally come from a variety of educational backgrounds from undergraduate and graduate programs including:

  • IT
  • Biology
  • Public Health
  • Criminal Justice
  • Psychology
  • Homeland Security
  • Engineering

Citizen Emergency Preparedness and Response

As the list indicates, emergency management careers in Norfolk range from meteorologists and epidemiologists to seismologists, terrorism specialists, and emergency management coordinators. Planning ahead for emergency management jobs requires first choosing a field and then researching its qualifications. Emergency management jobs in Norfolk begin at the local level.

The Norfolk Department of Emergency Preparedness and Response offers a Preparedness Town Hall Series open to the public, with emergency management education seminars in:

  • Hazardous materials
  • Severe winter weather
  • Insurance and disaster recovery
  • Hurricane preparedness

First Responders and Emergency Personnel

The Norfolk Department of Public Health offers informative guides and emergency management training for the following:

  • General terrorism threats
  • Bioterrorism
    • Smallpox
    • Anthrax

The Norfolk Fire-Rescue Department offers emergency management certification courses in areas including:

  • Terrorism
  • Management and leadership
  • Emergency medical care
  • Command and control

The Norfolk Police Department offers training courses that meet or exceed standards set by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice in:

  • Ethics
  • Terrorism
  • Special operations and team building
  • Incident Command System

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