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Top Four Fire Protection Engineering Education Programs

Oct 08, 2021

If you are interested in becoming a fire protection engineer, you will need to receive the proper education in the field before you begin the exam process. Here is a rundown of some of the fire protection engineering degree programs that I am personally familiar with. This blog is by no means exhaustive, and a more extensive list can be found here:

I graduated from California Polytechnic Institute: San Luis Obispo with a master's degree in fire protection engineering.

  1. The program was completely online and was very convenient to attend classes either live or recorded.
  2. I preferred to attend the classes live so I could ask questions as I went along and then watch the recordings for parts that I needed to review.
  3. All the instructors were extremely responsive, as I could expect an email response from them within the hour during the day and no longer than 24 hours, even on the weekends.
  4. They did offer in-person classes at the actual campus and a few students attended that way.
  5. The only negative about the program would be that some of the concepts would have been more easily understood in person, but that can be easily overcome by asking questions or attending in-person classes, and this issue is universal for all online programs.
  6. Overall, I would highly recommend getting your master's degree in fire protection engineering, and when you do sign up at, let them know that I sent you!

Another program I am familiar with is the bachelor's and master's program at the University of Maryland.

  1. They are the gold standard when it comes to fire protection engineering programs because they have significant research resources and outstanding faculty.
  2. Many of their professors are considered top tier in the fire protection industry and have many years of experience and knowledge.
  3. Most people with a degree in fire protection engineering are graduates of the University of Maryland and the alumni are very active post-graduation, so networking opportunities are likely to abound.
  4. If you are interviewing at a fire protection engineering consulting firm, chances are high that the interviewer is from the University of Maryland, and they will be familiar with your background.
  5. The University of Maryland boasts the only bachelor's degree program that is ABET accredited.
  6. You can find more information here:

Top Four Fire Protection Engineering Education Programs

If you are interested in studying abroad, consider Ghent University in Belgium and their master's degree program for fire safety engineering.

  1. This is an English-speaking program that offers a unique European perspective on fire protection engineering, as they emphasize performance-based solutions rather than code-driven requirements.
  2. Ghent University is also part of a larger network of other world-renowned universities including the University of Edinburgh, Lund University, University of Queensland, ETH Zurich, and University of Maryland, so their program is able to provide resources from a multitude of top institutions. To find out more, visit

Another well-known program is at Oklahoma State University and their offering of a bachelor's and master's degree program in fire protection and safety engineering technology.

  1. Because they offer a degree in engineering technology, you should first check with your state's engineering licensing board to see if that qualifies you to take the professional engineering exam.
  2. Oklahoma State University offers a more hands-on approach to fire protection engineering in which students will actually don firefighting equipment and learn practical approaches to fire prevention. Learn more about this program here

There are many other excellent programs that provide college degrees in fire protection engineering. I would suggest you investigate all of them to see which one is right for you, but they will all undoubtedly lead to great outcomes for your career as a fire protection engineer!
About the Author: Nick Tran

Nick Tran is a licensed Mechanical and Fire Protection Engineer in California. He has an Associates degree in Computer Aided Design from De Anza College, a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from San Jose State, and a Master of Science degree in Fire Protection Engineering from Cal Poly SLO. He is currently on the UL Standards Technical Panel for UL 38 and was president of the Alameda County Fire Prevention Officers Association.

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