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OSU’s Environmental Health and Safety Department Was Recognized by the College Safety Health and Environmental Management Association

OSU’s Environmental Health and Safety Department – OSU’s Environmental Health and Safety Department (EHS) has been recognized for its work in creating a safe and healthy learning environment for Oklahoma State University researchers and students. EHS works to promote health, safety, and environmental protection in all areas of the university, including labs, classrooms, and university programs, activities, and more.

At the CSHEMA’s annual conference, EHS was awarded three awards for its work over the past year. “Nothing great is ever accomplished without passion,” Kim Southworth, Director of EHS, said. “This EHS team is passionate and ready to take on the challenges ahead of us with the mission of making OSU, and EHS, the best we can be.” Three awards were presented to OSU for its first Annual Laboratory Safety Awareness Week (LSAW) on campus.

The lab safety division surveys over 1,100 labs each year to ensure the proper use of personal protective equipment, safety equipment, and appropriate labeling on doors. Hundreds of pieces of equipment are checked in each lab each year to ensure they are working properly.

The Innovation Award was given to EHS for their testing of peroxide forming chemicals. These peroxide forming chemicals have the potential to create explosive peroxides and must be stored and disposed of in accordance with strict guidelines. For more information about these compounds, please visit this website.

The Comprehensive Marketing and Communications award went to EHS for its marketing strategy and overall brand image improvement. EHS has built relationships across campus through its social media accounts and website. Safety training day is advertised every month on social media with information about staff members and their work on campus.

“The Oklahoma State University EHS team has set the standard for other campuses to follow and is setting an example for others to emulate,” Beth Welmaker, President of CSHEMA, said. “This team is well deserving of this award, but what really sets them apart is how collaborative they are and how they share information that strengthens safety programs across the nation.”

EHS allows students, faculty, and staff to file a complaint online. Anything that has the potential to cause an injury or an issue is considered important to EHS to be aware of and respond to. EHS works closely with facility management to make sure issues on campus are resolved quickly.

“I can’t think of a better team than EHS,” Southworth said. “Our employees are passionate about their work and share that enthusiasm with customers.”

“EHS has earned a reputation for being at the forefront of environmental, health, and safety programs,” she added.


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