Tag Archives: funeral director

Constructing Life and Death

Constructing Life and Death

As an architect, you’d design the interiors and exteriors of buildings where people live, work, shop and play. The following chart provides an overview about this career. As an architect, your designs must balance competing needs for functionality, safety, aesthetic value and cost efficiency. From initial client discussions to final delivery, you’ll be involved in every phase of a project, and you’d therefore need knowledge of engineering along with solid communication, management and supervisory skills.

Architecture degree programs are available at the associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree levels. Architects typically earn both a bachelor’s and master’s degree before beginning their professional careers, but you have some flexibility in how you can proceed. With an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree you are able to work entry-level positions, such as a drafter. To become a licensed architect, you’ll need a professional degree accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). Professional degrees include the Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.) and the Master of Architecture. A doctoral degree qualifies you for research and postsecondary teaching positions.

If possible, start preparing for your architecture education in high school. Courses in geometry, algebra, pre-calculus and physics develop your skills with mathematical precision. Courses in the arts and humanities may develop your aesthetic sensibility. Much of modern architecture is designed using computer-aided design (CAD) programs, so familiarity with technology and computers will be helpful.

Before you’re eligible for state licensing, you’ll need to complete a training period under the supervision of a licensed architect. Most training periods last three years, and most architecture program graduates meet the obligation by working an internship.

Constructing Death

Being a funeral director is very challenging. The phone rings at 3 AM in the morning with a hospice nurse on the other end of the line telling you that so-and-so has died, that so-and-so’s family is requesting your services and that the family of so-and-so is ready for you to come and pick up so-and-so. The phone rings at 6 PM the next day. Someone needs to see so-and-so … he simply can’t believe so-and-so is dead and must come to the funeral home at once to see so-and-so.

While those of us who stay in this business do so because we love serving people, the lack of personal boundaries can lead to depression. Depression, because my son’s baseball game was at 6 PM, but somebody in so-and-so’s family needed to see so-and-so this very minute. Depression because the emotional needs of others somehow always trump my personal life needs. And all of a sudden “I’m not a good father” and “I’m not happy with my life.”

Constructing Life and Death Credit Picture License: I Give Up via photopin cc
Mortuary Science Graduates Continue To Be In High Demand

Mortuary Science Graduates Continue To Be In High Demand

Mortuary Science Graduates Continue To Be In High Demand

While some sectors of the economy are slow to pickup, mortuary science is not one of them.  Mortuary science can be a difficult field to work in as it deals with the studying of deceased bodies (it is not for those who are squeamish). It is not considered a glamorous field but provides a service to those family members who are in their hour of need, dealing with the death of a loved one.

Most who study mortuary science go on the become funeral directors, but some become morticians which would include the study of embalming. The average salary of a mortician is approximately $55,000 dollars per year, and a funeral director can average approximately $48,000 dollars per year. As one obtains more experience the salary levels can rise considerably.

Obtaining a degree in mortuary science is a two to four year process depending on which state you live in. Researching your states requirements is the first step in determining the path to take as there are tests that must be taken at the state level to qualify as a mortician or funeral director. Also, each state requires that an internship be completed before licensing occurs.

The best way to get a foot in the door is to approach a local funeral home and ask if there are any jobs they have available that you could fill while finishing your studies. There are many funeral homes across the country that are family owned and some which are owned by corporations. Often times the family owned operations will hire from within, so starting off at a lower position while going through school could help with employment further down the road.

One thing to keep in mind about this career is that a mortician is dealing with grieving loved ones. This can be especially hard because everyone grieves in a different manner; some may be openly weeping while talking to you, while others may be angry their loved one has left and takes their anger out on the funeral home staff. No matter the situation, a mortician or funeral director must remain calm, sympathetic and caring.

Another consideration is the smell; my mother used to work in a deli when I was in grade school and the mortician down the street came in for lunch every day. I’ve never smelled such an awful odor, and he smelled that way every day; it is inescapable. The other thing to take into great consideration is your family. Are they going to understand when you can’t make it to Cousin Jenny’s wedding because someone died and you have to be at work? Death waits for no man (or woman), and you will be working when the situation demands it, not when you feel like it.

If you care about helping others in their time of need then this may be the career for you. Unfortunately every family will have need of a mortician or funeral director at some point in their lives. Fortunately there are caring individuals who decide to wear this mantle and help us through the crisis.

Mortuary Science Graduates Continue To Be In High Demand Credit Picture License: Tugnutt via photopin cc