Field of Study: Funeral Service and Mortuary Science
Funeral service and mortuary science programs prepare people to work as funeral directors or embalmers. Students learn mortuary science. They study the psychology of grief and the history and laws of funeral service. They also learn to manage a business and counsel family members.
Many people believe that funeral service and mortuary science is a gloomy field because it focuses on death. Although it wouldn't be fair to try to diminish the grief that death can bring, people in this field do their best to honor and celebrate life. Carefully restoring and preserving the body, showing compassion for the grieving, and bringing loved ones together are all ways that they do this.
Planning and preparing for a funeral takes a lot of work. Just as with a wedding or other large occasion, taking care of details and requirements can be overwhelming. Funeral service professionals lessen the stress by taking on many of these responsibilities.
In order to do this, they need to have compassion, business know-how, and organizational skills. In some cases, they also need an aptitude for artistry. If you possess these qualities, funeral services and mortuary science may be the program of study for you.
In this program, you take lab science courses that teach you to restore the body through embalming and other procedures. You also take courses in the psychology and sociology of death and funerals, which prepare you to counsel families and help them through a difficult time. Also, because you may work with people from a wide range of cultures and religions, you also learn about different end-of-life traditions and requirements.
About 60 schools offer programs in funeral services and mortuary science. You can earn either an associate degree, which typically takes two years of full-time study after high school, or a bachelor's degree, which usually takes about four years.