Environmental and Occupational Health

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What is Occupational Safety?

The field of Occupational Safety is devoted to promote occupational health and safety of workers in the organizations. Safety Professionals focus on identifying hazardous conditions, practices and processes that may cause injuries and diseases. Then they determine where controls need to be implemented to reduce or eliminate hazards and advise if a new program or practice is required.

If you pursue a career in Occupational Safety, you will be trained to control work-related injuries, illnesses, and physical or psychological discomfort in the workplace. You will learn to recognize, evaluate, and control existing and potential occupational safety hazards. These hazards can be biological agents, chemical, physical, ergonomic, and psychological factors.

What type of educational background should an Occupational Safety student have?

Students with an undergraduate degree in science, engineering or psychology tend to perform well in the Occupational Safety program. Undergraduate courses in communications, humanities and social sciences highly recommended but not required.

What will my academic program be like?

Students in Occupational Safety program will take the required College of Public Health core courses, and concentration courses, which focus on Occupational Safety. They may select from an extensive array of elective courses on risk assessment and environmental health law. To help apply their classroom knowledge, students will participate in a field experience. Students have the option to travel nationally or internationally for their field experience.

Where do program graduates typically work?

Our graduates typically work in a wide variety of jobs such as power plants, industry and manufacturing of all types, public utilities and agribusinesses. They may also work in settings such as risk management, government, education, consulting, construction, healthcare, waste management, retail, and transportation.

How much money can I earn as an Occupational Safety Professional?

According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook (see http://www.bls.gov/oco/) the median annual earnings of occupational health and safety professionals were over $50,000 in May 2004. Currently, entry level jobs pay about that much, and with 5 years experience and achieving Certified Safety Professional status, you can expect to earn $75,000 to $100,000 or more.

How do I get started?

Follow this link to access application materials
http://publichealth.usf.edu/degreereqs.html


For more information on the MPH in Occupational Safety, visit:
http://health.usf.edu/publichealth/eohsafetymph.html