Planning

Our Mission

Funeral directors are health care professionals who serve others during a time of loss, pain and grief. The Program of Mortuary Science's mission is to skillfully combine the study of behavioral, physical and applied sciences for the goal of preparing graduates for careers as knowledgeable, skilled and innovative funeral service professionals. Program graduates will be prepared to serve bereaved members of their communities in a manner that is proficient, dignified and caring.

Learn about the Program of Mortuary Science

Save the Date

Save the Date

Come back to school to celebrate 110 years of Mortuary Science at the U! Test your knowledge at mini class sessions then graduate to the Campus Club.

When: Friday, November 2, 2018 from Noon - 8:00 pm

Where: Mortuary Science Classrooms (Jackson Hall) and the Campus Club at Coffman Union

What: Continuing education sessions (pending CEUs) followed by a gathering at the Campus Club.

Stay tuned for more details.

 

Program News: Update Michael LuBrant, Program Director

Program News: Update Michael LuBrant, Program Director

July 10, 2018

Dear Colleagues,

My hope is that you are all enjoying a pleasant summer with friends and family members.  Having survived the late-April snow storm, it is hard to believe that we have had so many 90+ degree days so far this summer.  And yet before we know it, September will be here, with the start of Fall Semester classes just around the corner.  

We have been keeping very busy over the past few months with several projects and activities here in the program.  Probably the most significant project we have been working on is the preparation of a comprehensive Self-Study report for our re-accreditation by the American Board of Funeral Service Education (ABFSE).  The ABFSE is the organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education for the oversight of the 59 accredited funeral service education programs across the United States.  

In addition to the preparation of detailed annual reports for the ABFSE, each program must undergo a comprehensive review process every seven years.  As part of this review process, the program prepares an extensive self-study document, the purpose of which is to assess its compliance with the ABFSE’s accreditation Standards.  (For a complete presentation of the Standards, please visit: http://www.abfse.org/docs/standards.pdf)  We are now completing this report, which must be submitted to the ABFSE in advance of the on-campus visit, to take place September 18-20th.  During the site visit, the program will be reviewed by a team of three people: The team chairperson (who is specially trained in higher education assessment, and who is not a funeral service practitioner); an educator from another ABFSE-accredited program; and a funeral service practitioner.  The team will use information presented in the self-study report to evaluate the program’s operating procedures and policies.  The report also serves as a basis for discussions with faculty, students, staff, program administrators, and clinical preceptors about the overall operation of the program.  

During their visit, the team prepares a comprehensive report of their findings that is presented to the ABFSE’s Committee on Accreditation (COA) for its review.  In accordance with U.S. Department of Education policy, the COA is an autonomous committee of the ABFSE; it is made up of several educators, one representative each from NFDA, CANA, NFD&MA, and a member of the public.  Based on their review of the program’s self-study document and the site visit team report, members of the COA will decide the program’s re-accreditation status when they gather for the ABFSE Annual Meeting in April, 2019.  As you know from previous articles I have written, we continue to work hard for the goal of maintaining our compliance with the accreditation Standards, and are hopeful our accreditation will again be renewed for a period of seven years.  I will keep you posted about progress as we move forward with the re-accreditation process.

In other news, we are very pleased to welcome Ashley Mishek to the program, in her role as our second Student Services Professional.  Ashley will be working alongside our current Student Services Professional, Robyn Meunier, who joined us three years ago.  Presently, Robyn is working for the program four days a week.  Beginning in October, Robyn and Ashley will each be working for us at 50% time, in a job-share capacity.  This arrangement will allow us not only to staff the office five days a week, but will also ensure that two people are trained to do the advisory and administrative tasks required of the position.  Many folks might not realize this, but in order to use the various University’s enterprise management system tools required of this position, the person doing this work must complete over 50 separate training sessions!  Having two people trained in our operating systems will help to ensure we always have properly trained staff available to conduct the many important tasks of this position.  I would ask that you please extend to Ashley a warm welcome when next you call our office, or meet with her at a program event or gathering.  

I look forward to visiting with our friends and colleagues during the Fall MFDA District Meetings.  At these meetings, I will be providing a program update report, and will also answer any questions attendees may have.  We are also planning a Fall networking event on campus, which will give practitioners the opportunity to meet our students.  Please keep an eye on our website for details, as we will post information on our homepage (www.mortuaryscience.umn.edu) once plans are finalized.  We will also send out an e-mail announcement once the date, time, and location have been set.

In the meantime, we wish you all the best for a restful and enjoyable summer.  And if you have not done so already, please “like” us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/ummortsci).  I have uploaded a number of photos I took at both the MFDA convention in May and AFDA meeting in April, in addition to pictures taken at other program events.  Facebook is a good way to keep up with program happenings, so please visit us often.  

Thank you for your continued support of our work in the program of mortuary science at the University of Minnesota.  Go Gophers!

Sincerely,
Michael LuBrant
Program Director

Why Students Chose Mortuary Science

  • “I was a social worker in a hospital, doing grief counseling and after care. Then, when my father died, I experienced the funeral service profession from the other side. The experience was really positive and had a great impact on me, and I realized this is what I’d like to go back to school for.” —Colleen V.
  • “I was a social worker in a hospital, doing grief counseling and after care. Then, when my father died, I experienced the funeral service profession from the other side. The experience was really positive and had a great impact on me, and I realized this is what I’d like to go back to school for.” —Colleen V.
  • “The rewards of helping people made me select Mortuary Science. It is a great career—there are so many good aspects to it and it offers so many options. Also, my family is involved with the funeral business and someday I would like to own my business.” —Jeff H.
  • “I chose to major in Mortuary Science because I was interested in doing something in the medical field. I also learned about the funeral services industry because my boy friend's father owns a funeral home. The more I learned about it, the more I realized that death is as much a part of life as birth is, and this is a field I’d like to work in.” —Amanda S.
  • “I decided to get into the Program of Mortuary Science after I experienced a personal loss. I realized that I wanted to help people during the hardest time in their lives—when they had no idea what to do. It is very rewarding to do something good for people in a time like this. Also, more and more women are getting into this field; they seem well-suited because care-giving and compassion come naturally to them.” —Shannon H.
  • "I was a Biology teacher for fifteen years; then I decided I wanted to do something else. I am a people-oriented person and I felt that being in the funeral services industry was one way I could help people and provide a valuable service to society." —Andy J.

Job Opportunites in Funeral Service

Full-time licensed funeral director or intern

Henry W. Anderson Mortuary

Licensed funeral director or intern

Dingmann Funeral Home and Crematory

Intern or Licensed Funeral Director

Miller Funeral Home and Crematory

Donor Coordinator

Lions Gift of Sight