Fire Protection

Fire Protection Engineering is the application of engineering and science principles to protect people and their environment (built and natural) from hazards of fire. These include analyzing fire hazards; mitigating fire through building design and construction; examining building uses and industrial process; and design, installation, and maintenance of fire detection and suppression systems. Fire protection engineers also conduct post-fire investigation and analysis as it fits within their skills and knowledge domain.

Graduates of fire protection engineering programs can serve in various roles in industry due to the interdisciplinary nature of the field. These roles include but are not limited to fire consultants, fire and explosion investigators, and fire protection engineers or technologists. Also, you can find fire protection engineers or technologists working as government employees or in fire departments, fire equipment and system manufacturers, facilities managers, insurance industry representatives, research laboratories, university staff etc. The median salary of a fire protection engineer is given as $110,100 based on a survey conducted in 2016.

The Fire Protection Engineering Technology program at UNC Charlotte is one of a few programs in the United States that offers a curriculum that prepares students to join the workforce as a fire protection engineer or technologist. The courses offered in FPET focus on core competencies of a fire protection engineer including Fire Science, Fire Protection Systems, Fire Protection Analysis, Human Behavior and Evacuation as outlined by the Society of Fire Protection Engineers.

Graduation Requirements (based on the 2019-2020 Catalog)

Fire Protection Academic Plan (4-Year Plan of Study and 2+2 Transfer Plan)

Students in Fire Protection Engineering Technology must complete a total of 120 credits for their bachelor degree which includes 26 credit of Mathematics and Science, 74 credits of Major Electives, and 20 credits of general engineering technology courses.

Core courses

  • ETFS 3113 – Fire Dynamic
  • ETFS 4344 – Structure Fire Safety
  • ETFS 3144 – Active Fire Protection
  • ETFS 4283 – Fire Modeling
  • ETFS 3113 – Fire Safety in Built Environment


The program provides both laboratory spaces and equipment as well as computational resources for students who are interested working on undergraduate and graduate projects in fire protection engineering:

Fire Protection Engineering Laboratory

FSET Super Computer Server

Society of Fire Protection Engineering (SFPE) on Campus

The program has an active student chapter that provides opportunities for students to engage in activities related to fire protection engineering in coordination with SFPE. The chapter received silver award for chapter excellence in 2018 and 2019. Students are encouraged to register as members upon their start in freshmen year. You can also follow the UNCC SFPE student chapter on Twitter and Instagram.

Links to related Organizations

Society of Fire Protection Engineers

National Fire Protection Association

International Association of Fire Safety Science