Funeral Service Education

Available on the Vincennes campus and online



Are you ready for a career that helps others and lets you work with members of your community? Do you have a strong interest in biological science and business? If so, the Funeral Service Education Program at Vincennes University has what you are looking for!

Beyond the Classroom

In addition to lecture, students will gain hands-on experience during embalming courses. Students will work with licensed embalmers to gain the skills needed for a rewarding career in Funeral Services. Students also learn about the methods and techniques used to restore facial features in FNRL 120 Restorative Arts. *Distance Education students will be required to ravel to Indiana during their final semester in the program to complete an embalming certification with the program chair.

Our Funeral Service Education Program has been turning out high quality licensed Funeral Directors and Embalmers since 1975. We are the premier choice in Funeral Service Education with a long standing track record of success and American Board of Funeral Service Education accreditation.

Click here to visit the Funeral Service Resource Center


The Funeral Service Education degree programs at Vincennes University are accredited by the American Board of Funeral Service Education (ABFSE), 992 Mantua Pike, Suite 108, Woodbury Heights, NJ 08097 (816) 233-3747.  Web: For full accreditation information, click here

National Board Examination scores, graduation rates, and employment rates for this and other ABFSE-accredited programs are available at To request a printed copy of this program's scores and rates, go to the Funeral Service Education Program office, located in the Center for Health Sciences building, Room 215, or by email at, or by telephone at 812-888-5469.

Additional information, including medial annual wages information, can be found at the Bureau of Labor Statistics at


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Please note that applicants will be required to complete a secondary application. More information about the secondary application will be sent with your acceptance letter from the University.

For more information, please contact

Russel Ort, LFD, MS, A.B.A. 
Associate Professor, Chair, Funeral Service Education Program
Center for Health Sciences, Room 212
(812) 888-5469 


Education and licensure/certifications

Graduate of Mid-America College of Funeral Service, Jeffersonville, Indiana
Bachelors in Psychology from Upper Iowa University
Masters in Psychology from Grand Canyon University
Graduate Degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from the University of North Texas
Currently pursuing a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology
Licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer in the States of Indiana, Texas, Arkansas, and Missouri
Certification as a Behavioral Scientist A.B.A.

Teaching & Work Experience

Teaches all the arts and science classes of the Funeral Service Education Program. Mr. Ort has been teaching for over 20 years as a professor of Sciences in many areas including Forensic Science, Anatomy, Physics, Chemistry, ect...

Professor Ort views the classroom and learning with the following philosophy. I believe that a teacher is morally obligated to enter the classroom with only the highest of expectations for each and every one of their students. Thus, the teacher maximizes the positive benefits that naturally come along with any self-fulfilling prophecy; with dedication, perseverance, and hard work,  students will rise to the occasion."

Professor Ort finds that the best part of being a mortician is being able to help families through one of the most difficult times in their lives and to be able to help create meaningful celebrations of life for their loved ones.

Professor Ort has been a licensed funeral director and embalmer for over 30 years. He has served in many positions over almost 3 decades of service. Mr. Ort has been a General Manger for several firms including one of the largest and highest volume firms in the Mid-West. (St Louis, MO). He has also had the privilege of serving as Coroner, Chief Deputy Coroner for both Craighead and Clay counties in Arkansas, and a Pathology Assistant for several prominent Pathologists.

Frequently Asked Questions

Indiana State Standards:

National Standards:
***Please use the above link to check your individual state requirements for individual licensure as each state has differing requirements for obtaining a professional license as a funeral director/embalmer***

Click here to find out more about Tuition, Fees and General Expenses

Learn more about the required courses for this major+

Withdraw Policies

Graduation Requirements

Mission Statement and Program Outcomes