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Graduate education in industrial hygiene.

Feigley-CE; Underhill-DW
NIOSH 2004 Sep; :1-19
The University of South Carolina's Industrial Hygiene Program, founded in 1974 and accredited in 2002 by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), is firmly committed to the education of students in industrial hygiene and related fields at the Masters and Doctoral levels. The program is one of three tracks in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences. The other two tracks are Environmental Quality and Hazardous Materials Management. The Department is set within the University of South Carolina's fully accredited Arnold School of Public Health, which provides a rich environment for interdisciplinary teaching and research. The Arnold SPH received its initial accreditation by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) in 1977, and its most recent accreditation in 2002. The University of South Carolina is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, with an initial accreditation in 1917, and the most recent accreditation in 2001. The continued accreditation by all relevant organizations is an objective indication of the strength of the Industrial Hygiene Program. The goal of the Industrial Hygiene Program is to improve the quality of the occupational environment by training professionals in industrial hygiene, conducting important research on the causes and prevention of diseases and injuries related to occupation, conducting research on the safety of work environments, and by providing direct service to workers, employers, occupational health professionals, and the community. Our principal educational objective is to provide our students with a solid foundation in the fundamentals of industrial hygiene, which include anticipation, recognition, evaluation, and control of hazards in the occupational environment, and other key areas related to industrial hygiene and occupational health. This objective is achieved by a multidisciplinary faculty using a wide range of training methods, including traditional classroom lectures, hands-on laboratory course work, supervised practice and internship projects in industrial or governmental settings, and supervised thesis and dissertation research. Students also gain valuable knowledge by attending scientific and professional meetings and symposia, by taking field trips to local industries, by attending guest seminars, and through graduate assistant work experience. The required core curriculum provides students with an understanding of the fundamental areas of public health, while the track course requirements ensure that students learn the basic concepts of industrial hygiene, including survey and hazard evaluation skills, analytical and instrumental methods, relevant medical and toxicological principles, and control of occupational health hazards. Also, elective courses are available in specific content areas such as health physics, toxicology, air pollution, health and safety management, air monitoring and modeling, aerosol science, and hazardous materials management. The program offers the Master of Public Health (MPH), Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH), and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degrees. Graduating students typically have good success finding jobs. The need for our graduates has always outpaced our ability to train students, even during economic slumps. The shortage of industrial hygiene graduates has been exacerbated in recent years by a nationwide decrease in graduate school applications in industrial hygiene. The Department regularly receives phone calls from recruiters, as well as job announcements from employers, many of whom are program graduates. Over 90% of the Industrial Hygiene graduates from 1999 through 2004 are employed as environmental health professionals or have pursued higher academic degrees. Several graduates have started their own companies in areas such as industrial hygiene training, environmental and industrial hygiene consulting, and industrial hygiene products manufacturing and distribution.
Education; Training; Industrial-hygiene; Industrial-hygiene-programs; Industrial-hygienists; Occupational-health; Environmental-health
Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208
Publication Date
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Final Grant Report
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NIOSH Division
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC