Emergency & Disaster Management

Program Highlights

The MS in Emergency & Disaster Management program has many distinguishing elements. Students practice hands-on skills on real projects during an intensive on-campus week, partnerships and affiliations, build their networks professional organizations, and are eligible for a sought-after scholarship.

Experiential Learning: every student needs to connect to their communities and work to apply the knowledge and skills acquired in the classes.  A minimum of 100 hours needs to be logged in a variety of settings. These volunteer opportunities span response activities with agencies such as the Red Cross and Salvation, for example, shadowing or mentoring with an experienced Emergency Manager, teaching disaster/emergency management skills to the community or a variety of activities approved by the Director. 

The MS program is available in two learning formats:

  • Online: a virtual program with a 6.5 day on-campus session during one summer.
  • On Campus: a combination of in-person seminars and activities with related online material, and a 6.5 day on-campus session during one summer.

Emergency & Disaster Management Certificate Options

In addition to the MS in Emergency & Disaster Management degree program, Jefferson offers two certificate programs, one in Emergency & Disaster Management and the other in Business and Organizational Continuity.

On-Campus Week: Real World Exposure

During the six and a half day in-person week, students get to practice their hands-on skills and hear from disaster medicine experts. Past year experiences have included:

  • Hazard vulnerability assessments of Wells Fargo Center, home to the Philadelphia Flyers and Sixers, The Philadelphia Art Museum and Lehigh Valley International Airport
  • Full scale exercises at Einstein Medical Center, Einstein at Elkins
  • A dramatic full scale exercise held here at the University
  • A collapsed parking garage simulation exercise at a quarry

Take a look at some photos from Summer On-Campus Week, where students worked with a variety of agencies similar to those you would have in any community — airports, stadiums, corporations, hotels and universities.

Partners & Affiliations

Saint Louis University

Saint Louis University (SLU) offers a biosecurity and disaster preparedness concentration within their Master of Public Health Program. Jefferson and SLU have an agreement that allows students in either program to complete up to two courses at the other institution as an elective. This allows our students to experience course work in specialty areas such as communicable diseases, emerging infections and epidemics.

Naval Postgraduate School

Through a partnership with the University and Agency Partnership Initiative of the Naval Postgraduate School and U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Disaster Medicine and Management students have access to an expanded curriculum with UAPI partners, distance-learning technology, the Homeland Security Digital Library and other resources.

Professional Organizations

Jefferson has a student chapter in the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM). The cost to join the University's chapter is at a discounted rate. This is an important network to establish and has many resources that you can use as a student.

The IAEM is a non-profit organization with more than 5,000 members worldwide.  Its focus is on promotion of the "Principles of Emergency Management" and acting as a representative body of professionals who work and study as disaster management professionals.

Tuition & Fees

The MS in Emergency & Disaster Management program is committed to providing an affordable education for leaders responding to all types of unexpected emergencies. 


Recently ranked as one of the best online Master’s in Emergency Management by The Best Schools.