Have you been looking forward to pursuing a career as a funeral director? Is undertaking your passion? Allow me to point out that working with the dead is not for everybody. It has to come from within you. To many, it’s a cause for goosebumps but attending a funeral director school Houston will definitely be fun.
I know there are those already wondering why someone would want to become a funeral director. But then we are all engineered differently, and since death is the ultimate destination, we do need undertakers. So we should give a loud applause to them because theirs is not an easy job.
To those who wish to become funeral directors…
What Does a Funeral Director Do?
A funeral director is tasked with taking care of the diseased body and all the arrangements that follow until they are laid to rest. Taking care of the diseased entails embalming services. That is how the body is prepared for preservation, for example, draining bodily fluids and administering chemical preservatives.
They also apply cosmetics and reconstruct the body using cotton wool, plaster of palace, or clay to give the body a regular appearance in preparation for burial. Preservation involves refrigeration as it awaits burial.
Other tasks they handle include cremation services if the family prefers incineration to burial. Additionally, they ensure that burial customs get the respect and following they deserve. They handle paperwork such as applying for pension transfers and insurance benefits to next of kin. They also inform the social security administration about the death so they can obtain a formal death certificate.
Are you still curious? All right then. Here is more…
What Qualifications Do You Need to Become a Funeral Director?
First off, you need the right personality and attitude
A funeral director should be able to appear composed and empathic to the grieving families. You can’t be there smiling at the wife or husband of the deceased or crying louder than the family members. Again, if you are afraid of the dead, please don’t read further.
If you are still with me, let’s continue.
You also need academic qualifications
To become a funeral director, you need to join a mortuary science program for two to four years to gain the necessary skills. After completion, you are expected to sit for the board of licensing exams to demonstrate your practical skills. These are written and practical exams.
In addition, you are required to seek an apprenticeship under the guidance of a licensed and experienced funeral director. That takes one to three years.
Let’s get closer to home…
How to Become a Funeral Director in Texas; Funeral Director School Houston
To become a licensed funeral director in Texas, you must be above 18years old. In addition, you must be a high school graduate from an accredited institution. Additionally, you need to have successfully graduated from a mortuary science program and further complete the provisional licensing program.
The last step is to ensure you get a pass mark of 75% in the Texas law and the national board exams. Here is more on the requirements.
To become a funeral director in Texas, you need a minimum of five years going through all that preparation process.
So, are there any mortuary schools in Texas?
But of course!
1. San Antonio College; Funeral Director School Houston
San Antonio College has a mortuary science department that was established in 1961. The department offers an associate degree in applied science in mortuary science accredited by the American Board of funeral service education.
Students are subject to an exam by the Texas funeral service commission and the international conference of funeral services. By the time you are done with the program, you will be an international embalmer and funeral director.
There is also a certificate in funeral directing that takes 33 credit hours. That is 21 hours in the funeral directing curriculum and 12 credit hours in liberal arts. The certification in the funeral directing program is not accredited by the American Board of funeral service education.
If you decide to pursue this certificate, you miss out on embalming, pathology, and restoration arts and thus cannot take the national board exams. However, your certification will still be recognized by the Texas funeral service commission, and you will be able to offer funeral directing services. Check San Antonio College’s site for more on the tuition fee and enrollment.
2. Amarillo College; Funeral Director School Houston
They offer an associate degree in applied science that equips you with practical skills and theoretical knowledge on funeral service. The programs take 64 semester hours. The American Board of funeral services accredits it, and you are required to pass the national board exams for you to graduate. You can also opt to take the certificate program that requires 32 semester hours.
They also offer certificate courses in funeral directing. The limitation here is that the program does not provide lessons on embalming and thus is not accredited by the American Board of funeral services. That means upon completion, you cannot sit for the national board exams, but the Texas funeral commission recognizes the certificate.
3. Dallas Institute of Funeral Services; Funeral Director School Houston
They have a funeral director’s program that you can learn on campus or online. The program is not accredited by the American Board of funeral services education, however. Unfortunately, that means you cannot take the national board exams upon completing the program.
The other available option is the associate of applied science. The program is also offered on campus or online. You will learn the theoretical and practical bit of funeral services.
Additionally, they offer a Bachelor of Science degree that allows graduates who pass the national board exams to acquire higher education. Learn more about the Dallas Institute of Funeral Services program.
4. Northeast Texas Community College; Funeral Director School Houston
The northeast Texas community college offers an associate degree of applied science in funeral service, funeral directing, and embalming. In addition, the program includes a specialized course in cremation and business practices in the industry.
They also offer a funeral directing course that takes ten months for those who wish to take that route. Here you learn merchandising, accounting, psychology, business management, embalming, and body restoration arts basics.
They offer online studies that are suitable for those who live far from the college. In this program, hands-on experience in restorative arts is being provided during college visits. You are, however, required to enroll in a funeral facility near you for a clinical internship.
5. Commonwealth Institute of Funeral Service; Funeral Director School Houston
The Commonwealth Institute of Funeral Services is located in barren springs drive, Texas. You will graduate with an associate degree in applied science and a certificate in funeral directing upon joining the institute.
They offer training in embalming, body preservation, body restoration art, and disposition. They also teach you how to conduct burial ceremonies in different cultures and religions. The commonwealth institute has been in existence since 1936, so you have assurance that you are dealing with experienced experts in the industry.
Their lectures run from Monday to Thursday, 8 am to 12.50 pm. In addition, laboratory sessions are held on Monday to Thursday from 1 pm to 4.30 pm and on Fridays from 8 am to 4.30 pm.
To learn more about the commonwealth institute of funeral services, check the school’s website.
As you have seen, there are accredited online funeral director courses as well. So you can get a mortuary degree online even if there are no funeral director schools near you.
Here is something you should know.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Funeral Director School
So many factors come into play when you are choosing a school to pursue mortuary science. So let me equip you with some factors that will help you know what to pick and what to ignore.
1. Tuition Fee
Cost is always the number one factor to consider when you want to invest in something, especially when it’s as costly as studying mortuary science. You don’t want to end up in debt, or worse, fail to finish your course due to tuition arrears. So, you need to check and make a comparison between the available options.
Make sure you pick a school whose tuition fee lies within your budget. Also, make sure that you check for those that can get you extra service. For example, some schools will pay for your apprenticeship, saving you cash in the long run.
2. Accreditation by the Relevant Bodies
As you have seen, courses in mortuary science are accredited by the American Board of funeral services. Therefore, you have to check that the kind of school you choose is accredited. You don’t want to end up with a degree or certificate that is not recognized by the licensing bodies.
In most cases, a certification in funeral directing is not accredited by the ABFS, but the Texas funeral commission recognizes it. However, studying for a bachelors in mortuary science is a massive investment in time and money. Therefore, you should make sure that your school of choice is well registered, and you are free to take on the national board exams upon completion.
Life doesn’t just stop because you’ve taken up a course in funeral directing. You still have a family to take care of or a job to do. So many things demand our attention, and you can only take too much. So, a school that offers flexibility in your hours of study would be an excellent fit for you if you have a lot going on in your life.
It’s also great that some schools are offering accredited funeral director courses online. So you don’t have to be physically present each day for you to graduate. That means you can tend to other things as you keep on studying. Isn’t that great?
4. Further Future Support
As you choose your school, you have to think about the possibility that you might need someone to lean onto as you learn the loops of the industry. Does support from the institution end upon graduation? As I mentioned earlier, some schools offer you paid apprenticeships upon graduation. Others might not but could provide you with guidance on the dos and don’ts in the industry.
Some schools are dedicated to ensuring that every graduate fully exploits their potential, and they will offer you personalized support whenever you need it. So, go for a school that can provide you with further backing whenever required later on.
What Is Your Future Going to Be Like Once You Become a Funeral Director?
To start with, what does a funeral director make?
Frankly, funeral directors in Texas make good money. Salary ranges are primarily dependent on academic qualifications, accreditation, and additional skills, but let’s have a look.
On average, funeral directors in Texas make around $58189 per year. That is a range of between $49913 and $68776 per year.
Are funeral directing jobs available in Texas?
At this point, we can agree that this is not a career for the faint-hearted. Unfortunately, not so many people are willing to take on that challenge. That means that competition is lesser compared to other fields.
There will always be opportunities for mortuary workers and funeral directors. So you don’t have to worry about getting a job. Instead, your primary focus should be on qualifying for the task.
Funeral directing is not just a job. It’s a calling. The job involves embalming preservation and reconstructions of the diseased body in preparation for burial. Funeral directors also handle the relevant paperwork involved in the burial process and offer cremation services to families who want the body cremated.
As a funeral director, you must show empathy and support to the family as they grieve their loved one. Therefore, one of the requirements you need to be a funeral director is the right personality.
You also need to go through training for two to four years and sit for the board of licensing exams upon completion. Finally, to become fully qualified, you also need to go for an apprenticeship for one to three years.
Schools that offer mortuary science courses in Texas include the Dallas institute of funeral services, the San Antonio College, Amarillo College, the northeast Texas community college, and the commonwealth institute of funeral services.
You can take the associate’s degree in applied science in mortuary science or the certificate in funeral directing as a separate entity. However, in most cases, the certification in funeral directing is not accredited by the American Board of funeral services.
Upon completing the associate program, you are free to sit for the board of funeral services exams and seek to license.
There are also institutions in Texas that offer accredited online funeral director courses that make it easier for you if you are committed to your job or you live far from the facilities.
As you choose a funeral director school Houston to pursue your career in mortuary science, it’s essential to make sure the relevant bodies accredit it. Additionally, check that the tuition fee is affordable. Finally, ensure the lessons are flexible and that the school can offer you any form of support you might need even after completion.
Funeral directors earn more than average, and there are available jobs since the field is less competitive than other fields.
If you wish to become a funeral director in Texas, the resources and the funeral director school Houston are available. It is also a promising career, so let nothing hinder you. Go after your dreams.