The days of the “good old boys” fire department is fast becoming history. With the advent of more scientific knowledge of fire behavior, college education has become the way to secure a firefighter job and a way to progress up the career ladder. A degree in fire science will give you an edge when it comes time for job interviewing and testing. Advancement into officer positions will be easier with a degree in fire science.An online degree program allows you to do your course work around your shift schedule. If you are interrupted while doing online work, it is still available 24/7. (sort of like a firefighter). As long as you have a computer, you can do your assignments. Some programs allow you to complete a bachelor’s degree in 24 months with an accelerated program.Classes focus on life safety, fire suppression, fire investigation, administration, fire protection, fire prevention, and safety programs. Eastern Kentucky University has an online degree program.The US Department of Labor Statistics projects that the need for firefighters will grow faster than average through 2014. Most firefighter positions have great benefits, including holidays, medical, tuition reimbursement, and retirement plans.The median salary in 2004 was $15 to $43 an hour. The average salary for a battalion chief was $58,000, for an assistant chief $57,000 to $63,000, and for a fire chief $68,000.The fire service is an exciting career with good wages and benefits. Obtaining a degree in fire science will help you achieve you goal of getting a firefighter position or in moving up the career ladder.