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Public Service

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Serving the community as a firefighter, paramedic, police officer or emergency dispatcher, is not a job for just anyone. Studying this industry will help you build communication and quick response skills, plus the ability to stay calm under pressure. These careers in the public service field, in addition to others, are satisfying and in-demand.

Harper College offers several degree and certificate programs designed to prepare you for immediate employment or career advancement in public service, or to prepare you to transfer to a four-year university to complete a bachelor’s degree. 

forensic science law enforcement

Harper's on-site laboratory spaces give you the chance to get hands-on experience working through realistic scenarios and using professional equipment.

Transfer to a bachelor's program, or earn an AAS degree or certificate to start your career in public service.


Explore our programs

Harper College offers a number of public service career and transfer programs. To get started, select one of the program areas below:

Interested in another subject? If you are interested in transferring to study a public service-related subject not listed here, please meet with an academic advisor to learn what courses to take to meet your academic goals.

Latest News

Anne Harrigan

For attorney Anne Harrigan, A.A.S. ’96 and A.A. ’97, Harper served as the launching pad to a successful career in public service law. Read More

A display case features the photographs and bios of 7 fallen police officers

A new police memorial display at Harper College will honor those who have lost their lives while serving and protecting the public. “Students need to acknowledge the commitment to this career and know what it takes,” said Associate Professor Wayne Johnson, who served on the Chicago Police Department for 25 years. “This pays homage to those who serve every day and have paid the ultimate sacrifice.” Read More

we are harper, hillary gack

Emergency and Disaster Management was the dream career, Harper College was the place. Learn about Hillary Gack's road to success. Read More

sam giordano

Samuel Giordano, Fire Science Technology Program Director at Harper College, is motivated by preparing the next generation of Fire Science students for the challenges ahead. Read More

Front-facing photo of Jeanine Liska

"This career will not be handed to you on a silver platter. I had to work hard to achieve my dreams and I love being able to help my students achieve theirs." – Jeanine Liska, Fire Science Technology Alumni, Faculty and Firefighter/Paramedic at Schaumburg Fire Department Read More

To get started with criminal justice, fire science, EMT, public safety, or other public service courses offered at Harper College, contact Admission Outreach at 847.925.6700, submit a request information form, or submit an online application now.

alert iconCoronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak
Harper College has implemented safety measures that impact summer session and fall semester coursework, events and travel. Read More