A Quick Guide On How To Become An Embalmer

John Milton said, “Death is the golden key that opens the palace of eternity.” But before the palace of eternity, there are a lot of things that people who pass away need to go through first. In one of those many things, the embalmer and the funeral director come in. Now, these may be jobs that could make some people feel squeamish, but they are very respectable jobs. They are also very rewarding – financially speaking. Exactly how much do embalmers make? And how to become an embalmer?

If you’re interested in knowing other options besides embalming the deceased, then this job is for you.

Why You Should Consider This Career

How much do embalmers make?

First off, let’s get the question “how much do embalmers make?” out of the way. As per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary is – give or take – $37,000; and for a funeral director, it’s twice that amount. That’s a proper wage in the U.S.A., especially since you’re working with – or should I say “working on”? – people who have passed away. 

Don’t get me wrong, being with living and breathing people can be fun, but there are people out there who enjoy not being around them that much. This is why this kind of job is suitable for those who are looking for a financially stable, albeit unusual job, yet like working in solitude.

Now we know that working in this industry has a lot of perks, especially after knowing the funeral director and embalmer’s salary is very good. And with that kind of annual salary, I’m guessing being around deceased people and preparing them for the funeral is something that a job seeker can learn to get used to, even if it’s all very alienating at first.

Working hour

Another aspect of this job that could make you consider this career is that embalmers work full time and during regular business hours. In such cases, they are on duty after business hours and even on weekends. But, these cases allow them to get an extra source of income, especially because it is not a walk in the park. It is emotionally tiring to see grieving family members and making sure their deceased loved ones are properly prepared for the funeral and the burial.

Job outlook

Funerals and burials are an inevitable part of life, meaning that being in this industry is tantamount to having job security. There is not much growth for this job, according to projections by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is because of the increasing demand to cremate the deceased, but still, the demand for related jobs like being a coroner will likely grow by 8%.

Why You Should Consider This Career
Embalmers make the grieving process a little easier. Source: pixabay.com


Jobs And Responsibilities Of An Embalmer

Now that we know an embalmer can make a living wage out of people who aren’t living anymore, it’s time to gain more insights about the job description. Here are some of the jobs and responsibilities of an embalmer:

  • They do the necessary preparations to preserve a human body to make it available for the public to view until the burial.
  • To do the embalming process, they need to have the proper training to use embalming tools like trocars and the injections needed to remove bodily fluids.
  • They would have to clean a body by washing and then drying it.
  • After cleaning the body and removing some necessary organs, they will stitch up any incisions.
  • Some embalmers receive proper training and license to be funeral directors. If that’s the case, it will be their job to assist the family of the deceased through the memorial arrangements. That’s usually the case for embalmers who also work as funeral directors. And again: the funeral director and embalmer’s salary is higher than the figure mentioned above.

If you’re looking for more work that is less well-known as this, then this job is for you.

How To Become An Embalmer?

If none of the above information about the jobs and responsibilities of an embalmer hasn’t put you off yet, then you might be the perfect fit for this job that is not for the faint of heart. It’s time for us to explore the requirements one will need in order to get into this kind of job. The American Board of Funeral Service Education is the agency accredited to provide the courses to prepare an aspiring embalmer into becoming one. Below are some of the educational prerequisites and requirements:

  • An associate degree which can be obtained either through a two-year and/or a four-year course in mortuary science or funeral science (yes, there is such a thing)
  • A state license; the requirements for this vary per state
  • Testing and apprenticeship to further an embalmer’s knowledge in mortuary techniques
  • Attending seminars for grief counseling if an embalmer also happens to be a funeral director
  • Classes for the ethics of embalming
  • Courses for mortuary business operations
  • On-the-job training as an associate embalmer
 Turn Into An Embalmer
Embalmers make the transition of the deceased from the morgue to casket smoother. Source: maxpixel.net

If you don’t know where to start, find your dream jobs in the best sites for more options.

Embalmers Are A Part Of Life

Although we are conditioned to think otherwise, death is definitely a part of life. That is why considering – and actually having – a job in the mortuary industry is a wise decision because death is something constant. Like Haruki Murakami, a famous Japanese author said that “Death is not the opposite of life, but a part of it.”

Looking for more interesting jobs? Then visit our Job overview section. Everything is free and informative at JobandEdu.

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Leonard hails from the Philippines and works as a freelancer, author, poet, and visual artist. He discovered his passion for writing and painting at an early age, leading him to pursue a degree in Mass Communications. He worked at a few places after college before landing what he thought was a "life-changing" writing career. He was also the lead singer and songwriter for a band. His career as an English teacher, poet, and visual artist took him to Hanoi, Vietnam, in 2018. You can see more of his work on Instagram at @anumalei.