The funeral service program offered by Eastwick College is accredited by ABFSE and can be completed in 24 months
Aspiring funeral directors in the area had it rough up until a few years ago: they were faced with the prospect of a long commute to attend classes in Manhattan, or an equally long commute to the only funeral service college in South Jersey at the time. All of this changed when Eastwick College announced in they would be offering a funeral service degree at their Hackensack campus in 2013. Two years later, the program gained accreditation from the prestigious ABFSE, and has become a popular choice for those looking to study locally for a career in funeral service.
For many people, funeral service might seem like a dark field to work in, but the skills required for the job are much closer to that of a counselor or makeup artist in many ways, explains Mr. Thomas M. Eastwick, president of Eastwick College.
“Many often see funeral service as a gloomy field because it focuses on death and dying,” explains President Thomas M. Eastwick. “While it’s true that it can bring its share of grief, professionals in this field also do their best to honor and celebrate life, carefully restoring and preserving the body, and providing compassion and consoling to family members and friends as they are gathered to remember the deceased.”
This unique degree at Eastwick College can be completed in as little as 24 months, significantly quicker than other programs offered in the area, and prepares the student to enter the workforce in the capacity of a licensed practitioner of funeral service, which includes embalming, funeral directing, funeral arrangement, and various positions in a medical examiner’s office.
Planning and preparing for a funeral service involves a significant amount of work for the family; often, attendance to details and requirements can be overwhelming. Funeral service professionals lessen this stress by taking on many of these responsibilities. It is a career that requires compassion, business know-how, medical knowledge and organizational skills. In some cases, an aptitude for artistry can also be beneficial this field.
In the funeral service degree at Eastwick College, students will learn how to restore the body through embalming and other procedures in fully-equipped lab classrooms. They also study the psychology and sociology of death and funerals, which is vital in their preparation to counsel families and help them through a difficult time. Also, because funeral service graduates work with people that practice a wide range of cultures and religions, students in this program also learn about many of the different end-of-life traditions and requirements.
In addition to the benefits of the ABFSE accreditation, graduates of the program are able to sit for a National Board Examination in embalming and funeral director, after which they will work in the capacity of an industry intern until they have the experience and skill to advance.
“There is currently a significant number of job opportunities for funeral directors and embalmers. And demand will continue to increase in the coming years as population ages,” adds President Eastwick. “Even better, the average annual salary of a funeral director in the NY/NJ Metro Area is over $56,000.”
Learn more about Eastwick College’s Funeral Service Degree Program, or call 201-327-8877.
The AAS degree program in Funeral Service at Eastwick College is accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education (ABFSE), 992 Mantua Pike, Suite 108, Woodbury Heights, NJ 08097, 816-233-3747, www.abfse.org.