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Public Safety

Could this be a Career for You?
  • Are you interested in being involved in the community?
  • Do you like helping people solve problems?
  • Do you enjoy volunteering, serving the public’s interest?
  • Do you have excellent references?
  • Do you have strong interpersonal skills?

What You Need to Succeed

  • Communication Skills
  • Mental Toughness
  • Good Judgment
  • Physical Strength and Stamina
  • Decisiveness
  • Courage
  • Compassion

Pathway Overview

Careers in this pathway primarily address public order, fire protection, and emergency medical services. These careers generally offer good benefits and job security as the need for protective services is in constant high demand. Also, growth in this sector is projected to increase over 20% in the near future. Successful individuals who follow this pathway are committed to protecting people from danger and helping to ensure their health and safety.


Police Officer
  • Police officers are sworn to protect and serve the communities in which they work.
  • They enforce laws, obtain warrants, arrest and interview suspects, secure crime and accident scenes, write detailed reports and testify in court, among other duties.
  • Officers also respond to emergency calls, working shifts that often operate around the clock.
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  • Firefighters receive expert training that prepares them to handle a variety of emergency situations.
  • Though best known for fighting fires, they also handle medical emergencies, rescuing and treating the injured, educating the public and more.
  • Their work often requires they be on call around the clock. They are usually required to stay in the firehouse during their shifts to respond more readily to emergency calls.
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Paramedical and Emergency Medical Services
  • Becoming an emergency medical technician (EMT) or paramedic can take anywhere from one to three years, depending on your choice of a career and educational path.
  • EMT training focuses on life support techniques in first-response situations, including CPR, tourniquet application and treatment of wounds.
  • Paramedics deliver more advanced procedures and therefore require more extensive education and training.
  • These high-stakes positions require you to act quickly and accurately as you care for patients in chaotic situations.
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Top Jobs and Salaries

Salaries: What is Your Career Worth?

To help you make important decisions about investing resources in your college education, see how these careers compare:

JobsSalary Ranges
Police and Sheriff's Patrol Officer$62,810 to $134,430
Security Guard$21,930 to $47,300
Emergency Medical Technician and Paramedic$22,610 to $59,070

Find a College

College Programs: Public Safety

To find programs in this pathway please select your college of interest below.

Try It Out

Start Today: Get involved and learn more about a new career.

Here are many organizations and activities to explore to learn more:

  • Student Council
  • Debate/Mock Trial
  • ROTC
  • Attend city council or other local government meetings
  • Visit a local courthouse or public safety office
  • Run for student government or an organization’s board
  • Join a firefighter explorer or police cadet program
  • Work as a page or job shadow a state legislative representative
  • Volunteer with programs for at-risk youth or ex-offenders
  • Job shadow a lawyer at a legal firm
  • Attend court hearings and other public legal procedures
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