Pre-Mortuary Science Focus, AS
The Associate of Science degree program in Pre-Mortuary Science is designed for students who are planning to transfer to a four‐year bachelor's degree program in Mortuary Science. The curriculum fulfills the general education requirements of most bachelor degree programs but also is specifically designed to prepare students for the challenging mortuary science program. Upon completion of the bachelor's degree in Mortuary Science, the new funeral service professional will be eligible to take the qualifying exam for Certification in Thanatology (CT) from the Association of Death Education and Counseling and the Thanatology Association. Combining the thanatology certification with funeral director and embalmer licensure is empowering the funeral service professional to meet the challenges of the 21st century.
Program Learning Outcomes
Upon completion of this program, graduates will:
- Demonstrate skills in supporting the bereaved by describing the grieving process and its relationship to healing.
- Explain individual and cultural differences in attitudes tow death, grieving, mourning, loss, assessment and intervention, and traumatic death and death education.
- Demonstrate preparation for transfer to a bachelor's degree program by completing foundational courses and thanatology with no loss of credits upon transfer.
Where You Could Go
- Works with the bereaved, providing sensitive, effective intervention during a time of emotional need.
- Is a professional caregiver who enables families and communities to express their concern for life and the living.
- Is a motivated man or woman who practices a unique vocation and who is legally required to possess certain professional qualifications.
- Is involved in a variety of activities within the community.
- Carries out administrative and logistical tasks required by law, custom and accepted practice.
Duties and Responsibilities of a Funeral Service Professional:
- Provides support to the bereaved during initial stages of their grief.
- Arranges and directs funeral ceremonies.
- Arranges for removal of the deceased from the place of death.
- Prepares the body according to the wishes of the survivors and requirements of the law.
- Secures information for legal documents.
- Files death certificates and other legal papers.
- Assists survivors with details for filing claims for death benefits.
- Helps individuals adapt to changes in their lives following a death through post-death counseling and support group activities.
With nearly half of Ohio’s funeral directors over the age of 55, retirements are expected and the outlook for the employment is very good. Further, Ohio entry level and median wages are above the national average underscoring the earning potential new graduates (US Department of Labor, 2014).
How Does the Program Work?
Students enroll at NC State and beginning in their first semester they are introduced to the arts and sciences of funeral service. Working closely with their NC State advisor, the student enrolls in a range of courses specifically planned to support a career in funeral service. They include courses in natural sciences, social sciences, and business. Students will study thanatology (science of death and dying) and prepare for a career as an embalmer through intensive human anatomy and physiology in the NC State gross anatomy lab.
Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science
Upon completing the Associate of Science Degree with a Pre-Mortuary Science Focus students may transfer to the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science to earn the Bachelor of Mortuary Science Degree. Completion of a baccalaureate mortuary science program, like the program at CCMS, is required for Ohio licensure as a funeral director and embalmer. The NC State academic advisor will assist you with each step to make your transfer to CCMS effortless.
Wayne State University
Students who complete their Associate of Science Degree with a Pre-Mortuary Science Focus can also transfer to Wayne State University in Michigan, which provides a local option to complete the Bachelor’s Degree in Mortuary Science at in-state Michigan rates. Students do not have to relocate to the university. Coursework is completed online and via practical experience at the Barkdull Funeral Home and Crematory in Shelby. The Wayne State program meets all of the educational requirements for licensure in Ohio.
The total estimated cost of the Wayne State University program is $41,000 ($11,750 at NC State with the balance at Wayne State University in-state tuition rates). The Wayne State program has a 94% job placement rate in the industry. Job growth is very strong throughout north central Ohio.
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