The Illinois Occupational and Environmental Health and Safety Education and Research Center (Illinois ERC) is a recognized leader in the national and international movement to promote healthier and safer workplaces and workers. It is the ambition of the Illinois Occupational and Environmental Health and Safety Education and Research Center (Illinois ERC) to improve, promote, and maintain the health of workers and communities. We do this through innovative and interdisciplinary activities that: 1) Educate graduate students to be professionals and researchers in occupational and environmental health and safety;2) Prepare professionals to be leaders and practitioners in their disciplines through continuing education;3) Enhance the expertise of employers, worker organizations, and communities through outreach and technical assistance;and 4) Enrich the knowledge base for solving current and future problems. As educators, researchers, and professionals working to promote occupational safety and health, we believe that everyone has the right to healthy work - a job that pays a living wage, a workplace that is safe, an organization that treats them with respect, and access to qualified occupational safety and health professionals, and our public responsibility and charter requires that we give the highest priority to ensuring healthy work for everyone. The Illinois ERC is comprised of 12 programs. There are 5 continuing academic programs: Industrial Hygiene (IH), Occupational Medicine (OM), Occupational Safety (OS), Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology (OEE), and Agricultural Safety and Health (ASH-A). A new academic program in Occupational Health Nursing (OHN) is proposed with this application. The Illinois ERC has Continuing Education (CE) in industrial hygiene, occupational medicine, occupational health nursing, and occupational safety;Agricultural Safety and Health (ASH-CE);and an Outreach Program. The ERC also has Center Wide Activities including a Center Administrative Core, Diversity Recruitment, and Interdisciplinary Coordination (CWA), and two research training programs: Pilot Projects Research Training program (PPRT) and Targeted Research Training program (TRT).
The program is highly relevant. There continue to be far too many workplace injuries and illnesses and an unmet need for professionals to address workplace health and safety issues. The Illinois ERC is working to meet needs in Chicago, Illinois, and adjacent states with graduate education, continuing education and outreach, research training, and research.
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