911 dispatchers are in demand

Public safety telecommunicators in 911 call centers are in critical need in local agencies, which are actively seeking qualified applicants. As a police, fire and emergency medical services dispatcher, you play a critical role and are the first point of contact with the public in emergency situations.

The Public Safety Telecommunication Certificate program at St. Petersburg College gives you the expertise to perform this job and fill the job gaps in Pinellas County.


SPC is partnering with Pinellas County Safety and Emergency Services and several local public safety agencies to provide this six-week training, which also covers the state-mandated certification testing fee.

Evening classes

We now offer this class in the evenings. See training details for more information.

How to Register

Contact Paul Roach to register

Request info

This academic program prepares you for the following careers. All job data is provided by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Public Safety Telecommunicators

Salary Data

Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL Metro Area Average

Florida Average

Projected employment for Florida

2022 Employment




Percent Change


Projected Job Openings


Upcoming Dates

April 4 - May 23, 2022
August 1 - September 20, 2022
October 3 - November 22, 2022


In-state: $619.44
Out-of-state: $2,477.76


The Public Safety Telecommunication training includes:

  • 100 hours of online courses, which you have four weeks to complete
    • 80% final score to pass
  • 80 hours of agency experience, which you can start immediately
    • Scheduled with coordinator/agency contacts
    • Documented by completion of “Security Awareness” forms
  • 64 hours of face-to-face training taken at SPC
    Evenings for 16 days, Monday - Friday, 6-10 p.m.
    • 8 days of practical exercises and testing
    • .5 day of CPR certification (must pass exams)
    • 2 days of review for state certification exam (need 80% final score to pass)

TOTAL HOURS: 244 (232 hours are state mandated. We offer an additional 12 hours in the classroom for state exam review, above the required 232. We want our students to succeed!)

Public Safety Telecommunication Postsecondary Adult Vocational Certificate

Effective Beginning Catalog Term: Fall 2019 (565)

The requirements shown below are valid beginning Fall 2019 (565), and may not reflect degree requirements for current students. Current students should visit My SPC and view My Learning Plan to see specific degree requirements for their effective term.

Program Summary

This program offers a sequence of courses that provides coherent and rigorous content aligned with challenging academic standards and relevant technical knowledge and skills needed to prepare for further education and careers in the Law, Public Safety and Security career cluster; provides technical skill proficiency, and includes competency-based applied learning that contributes to the academic knowledge, higher-order reasoning and problem-solving skills, work attitudes, general employability skills, technical skills, and occupation-specific skills, and knowledge of all aspects of the Law, Public Safety and Security career cluster.

The purpose of this program is to prepare students for employment as a dispatcher: police, fire, ambulance (SOC 43-5031). The content includes, but is not limited to, ethics and the role of the telecommunicator; standard telecommunication operating procedures; relationship to field personnel; understanding of command levels; typical layouts of message centers; use of performance aids; overview of emergency agencies; functions and terminology; use of correct words and grammar; communications equipment, functions and terminology; types of telecommunication equipment; malfunctions and maintenance agreements; proper and correct telephone and dispatching procedures and techniques; cooperation and reciprocal agreements with other agencies; federal, state, and local communication rules; emergency situations and operating procedures; emergency medical dispatch procedures; employability skills; leadership and human relations skills; and health.

Graduation Requirements

-Successful completion of SPC Public Safety Telecommunications Program

Academic Pathways

The Academic Pathway is a tool for students that lists the following items:
  • the recommended order in which to take the program courses
  • suggested course when more than one option exists
  • which semester each course is typically offered
  • if the course has a prerequisite
  • courses that may lead to a certificate (if offered in the program)

Please verify the Academic Pathway lists your correct starting semester.

Program Leadership Information

Michael Dibuono
Public Safety Program Director

Florida CIP Code

0743039900 - Public Safety Telecommunication

Federal CIP Code

43.0399 - Homeland Security, Other.

Admission Requirements

Students applying to this program need to:

  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Be a high school graduate or its equivalent (GED)
  • Be a U.S. Citizen or be a permanent registered alien (some agencies may require US citizenship)
  • Not be a convicted felon (A background check will be conducted through the Pinellas Police Applicant Screening Service.)
  • Be free of addictions to alcohol or other controlled substances. (Employing agency will request certification under oath)
  • Be free of any physical or mental defect or disease that might impair one to perform his/her duties per F.S. 401.465(d)3.
  • Possess basic computer keyboarding knowledge
    • Employing agencies will require a typing test for speed and accuracy, minimum 25 words per minute
    • Successful completion of CritiCall Public Safety Dispatcher Testing