Interested in attending PIMS?

Thank you for your interest in our institution, we have a long proud history of providing education in the area of mortuary science and we are pleased that you are considering us. We know selecting a school to attend can be an overwhelming decision, so let us assist and answer some of your questions or concerns.

Why Choose PIMS?

PIMS is not a large university or college; we are a small flagship school. What it means to be a flagship school is we are not an Institution that offers majors in several different disciplines.  We solely specialize in mortuary science which makes us experts in this industry and we have been leading the profession since 1939.  Besides having a long tradition of being leaders in mortuary science, there are many other reasons you may want to consider PIMS:

  • Our diversified ever-evolving curriculum addresses and prepares students for the ever-changing funeral industry.
  • Students at PIMS are exposed to a wide range of applied experiences particularly due to our relationship with the Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office and local businesses that students are able to visit.
  • Our experienced faculty members have a variety of different backgrounds and most currently work “in the trenches” within the funeral service profession.
  • PIMS has diploma and associate degree options.  But we also have options to earn a bachelor degree.
  • Our state-of-the-art facility helps students fulfill their clinical requirements and enhances student learning.
  • A friendly knowledgeable staff is always willing to assist.
  • One-on-one academic guidance is available from any of the faculty or administrative professionals.
  • Industry speakers and field trips are integrated into the programs so that students can learn from and interact with leaders in the industry.
  • Students have opportunities to get involved with student government, school activities and within the community.
  • PIMS offers job assistance as we are a major resource for funeral directors seeking resident interns and licensees.

What if I am still unsure about this career choice?

We always suggest contacting a local funeral director and asking if you can shadow or volunteer your time at the funeral home.  Participating in the day-to-day activities will help you decide if it is the right career for you. The qualities that a funeral director should have are compassion, interpersonal communication skills and time management.

How to get started…

1. The first step to becoming a funeral service professional is to make sure you determine the state where you plan to be licensed.  You will want to have an understanding of both the education requirements and the apprenticeship/internship requirements.

2. Schedule a visit to our campus; let the PIMS Admissions professionals help you determine the best program for you based on your state’s requirements and your previous education.

  • Based on your meeting or conversation with the PIMS Admission Department you will know:
    • If you need credits to enter our Associate programs, click here to view Area I and II for Campus Programs and here for Online Programs.
    • If you need to fulfill the Pennsylvania preliminary credit requirement, click here to view the Pennsylvania Funeral Director Credit Example list.

3. Once all preliminary requirements are met, submit an application for one of the three start dates we have available throughout the year.

Are you relocating to Pittsburgh?

We are Pittsburgh proud here at PIMS! Pittsburgh is a vibrant city with something to see and something to do around every corner. There are numerous unique communities within this big city, like Bloomfield, Shadyside, South Side, and the Strip District to name a few; each with their own charm and all worth exploring.  Whether coming to Pittsburgh just to attend PIMS or if you are planning on staying, PIMS can help with this transition.

PIMS does not have campus housing but we can recommend housing options in the area. Click here to view the housing list.

Are you interesting in being paired with another incoming student? Complete the roommate form and submit to the Admission Department via fax (412-362-1684) or email Click here to view the form.

On the application for admission, there is an option to request to receive the funeral home list. This is a list of local funeral homes that are willing to house PIMS students in exchange for the student working for them while attending school. Please be sure to check that option when you submit your application and the Director of Development will forward you that list once you have a completed application on file.

Looking for something to do when you get here? Click here!

What to expect when attending

Class Schedule

Classes run from 8:00 A.M. to 1:30 P.M. weekdays. Starting in the second trimester, clinical rotation will begin which will start at 1:30 P.M. weekdays. There will be some weekends that require you to be on-call. If this schedule does not fit your current lifestyle or work schedule, we do have the Distance Education option.


All books can be purchased from the online PIMS Bookstore or from any source of your choice. Please wait until you are accepted into the program before purchasing any books.  Feel free to check out the bookstore to explore the book list currently in use.


Please refer to the medical form which is the last page of the PIMS Application for Admission for the timeframes of when each immunizations needs to be done.

Disability Information

Those students who have a documented learning disability, must also provide a diagnostic report from the psychologist who issued the diagnosis. The report must list the nature of the learning disability, as well as recommendations for accommodations.   The report also must be dated within three years of the time of application. We will then work to see how the recommended accommodations may be implemented.

Student Body Diversity

Click here to view a snapshot of PIMS student diversity.

Graduation Rate

Click here to view information on gainful employment for the campus based Diploma program.

Click here to view information on gainful employment for the distance education Diploma program.

Employment rate calculation explanation: Data for students employed in funeral service/mortuary science must be provided on an annual basis to the school’s accrediting body, the American Board of Funeral Service Education. Job placement is to be calculated within six months of each student’s graduation.  Programs under this accrediting body are required to specify funeral service related employment, active military duty, or enrollment in further higher education as the three instances that are considered “employment” for purposes of this calculation.