Central Appalachian Regional Education and Resource Center (CARERC)

Occupational Safety (MS)

The CARERC Occupational Safety program is directed by Scotty Dunlap, EdD, CSP, and is housed administratively within the EKU College of Justice and Safety and its School of Safety, Security, and Emergency Management.

The Masters of Science (MS) in SSEM with an Occupational Safety concentration requires classes in administration, security management, emergency preparedness, regulatory compliance, auditing, and statistics (quantitative analysis). The degree requires a minimum of 36 credit hours for graduation. Of the 36 required hours, 7 credit hours – Occupational Health and Safety (CPH 620), Occupational Health and Safety Seminar (CPH 699), and Occupational Safety and Health field surveys (CPH 698) – are interdisciplinary courses of EKU and UK and are required for CARERC funding. In addition, MS in SSEM students must complete both a practicum experience and a thesis addressing a research topic in occupational safety. The EKU Cooperative Study and Placement office assists in identifying suitable practicum opportunities.

Information about admission requirements may be obtained from the EKU graduate schools. Students who are interested in the occupational safety training program and who receive CARERC funding are required to be enrolled in the MS in SSEM, have their application reviewed and approved by the Chair of Graduate Studies and Research, and enroll in the required courses listed below. Each candidate also must receive the written endorsement of a faculty member willing to act as his or her thesis advisor.

Required courses for all SSEM MS students with a concentration in Occupational Safety
Course Title & Number Semester Hours Course Description
Safety, Security, and Emergency Management Administration
(SSE 815) – EKU designated
3Examines administrative concepts and principles regarding organizing & managing the functional areas of fire, safety, and security. Development of organizational and administrative structure to include policy formulation, goals & objectives, managerial tasks, and impact evaluations within an encompassing safety, security, and emergency framework.
Issues in Security Management
(SSE 827) – EKU designated
3Survey of salient issues and concerns confronting security managers. Examines the application and contribution of various management concepts and philosophies to assets protection issues such as information security, personnel protection, threat analysis, technological adaptation, and resource allocation.
Emergency Preparedness and Response
(SSE 826) – EKU designated
3In-depth study of the planning process, program development, training methods, etc., for response to man-made and natural emergencies/disasters for both private and public entities.
Legislation and Regulatory Compliance
(SSE 833) – EKU designated
3Comprehensive study of federal and state regulations and legislation such as OSHA, EPA, etc., which mandate compliance with certain safety, health, and environmental conditions and practices relating to work performed in occupational, industrial, and comparable settings.
Auditing for Safety, Security, and Emergency Management
(SSE 865) – EKU designated
3Theory and application of auditing in safety, fire, and security. Comprehensive study of risk/threat exposure and assessment.
Quantitative Analysis in SSEM
(SSE 880) – EKU designated
3Quantitative analysis of data is an essential skill needed among professionals in the fields serviced by our graduate degree. This is demonstrated through both descriptive data, such as leading and lagging indicators of organizational performance, and the use of more complex statistical tools applied to safety, security, and emergency management performance.

The required courses listed above account for 25 credit hours: 18 core course hours for the MS in SSEM; 7 core interdisciplinary course hours required by the CARERC. The occupational safety training program also requires the completion of a thesis (3 hours credit, given as SSE 880). The remaining 8 hours required for the MS in SSEM degree are completed by taking three elective courses from the list below. Seven of these approved courses are provided by the UK College of Public Health. Students may take other electives provided at EKU and UK with the review and approval of Dr. Dunlap.

Additional courses for the Occupational Safety concentration
Course Title & Number Semester Hours Course Description
Industrial Safety Management
(SSE 828) – EKU
3Investigation and analysis of hazard control principles relating to the management of personnel, facilities, and equipment, including control procedures, work-task analysis, risk identification and countermeasures, safety training, and pertinent safety management techniques.
Construction Safety
(SSE 832) – EKU
3Introduction/analysis of general construction safety utilizing the key components of 29 CFR196. Included in this study will be general safety & health provisions of OSH Act and a review of the various subparts of 29 CFR1926.
Corporate Compliance
(SSE 834) – EKU
3The assessment, analysis and development of safety, emergency management, security and environmental compliance programs. This course will address the regulatory requirements and best business practices for each of the compliance areas.
Personal and Environmental Hazards
(SSE 845) – EKU
3Analysis and investigation of hazard and threat control principles relating to personal and environmental risks within the workplace. Investigation techniques, inspection methodologies, management techniques, and prevention programs essential to the manager within the safety, fire, and security functions are emphasized.
Ergonomics and Human Factors
(SSE 850)
3The assessment and analysis of ergonomic risk factors, identification of known musculoskeletal disorders, and development of effective ergonomic management techniques and compliance
Environmental Toxicology
(EHS 865)
3Toxicology, the principles, concepts and thinking that are its foundation. The mechanisms by which substances enter cells of the body, the physiological processes, the target organs, classes of toxic substances, and potential exposures.
Industrial Hygiene Principles3A study of the impact of the work place on worker’s health and the control of causative factors of disease.
Essentials of Industrial Hygiene
(EHS 841)
3Identify primary sources of potential chemical, physical and biological agents, identify techniques for assessing the risk of worker exposures and understand health impacts of occupational exposures to workers.
Environmental Health
(CPH 601) – CARERC
3Theory and practice of assessing, controlling, and preventing environmental hazards.
Injury Epidemiology
(CPH 610) – CARERC
3The epidemiologic basis for understanding the distribution and determinants of injuries and poisonings.
Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology
(CPH 617) – CARERC
3Basic course on occupational and environmental epidemiology methodology, including study design and interpretation of data.
Toxic Agent Implications in Public Health
(CPH 622) – CARERC
3An overview of chemical agents within the environment, their interaction with the human organism, and resultant public health implications.
Agricultural Health and Safety
(CPH 728) – CARERC
3Analysis and discussion of selected topics in agricultural health and safety.
Scientific Report Writing
(CPH 718) – CARERC
3Introduction to the essential elements of grant writing, journal publication, and scholarly reporting.

This curriculum provides students within the SSEM program the opportunity to take the majority of their courses at EKU. Occupational Health (CPH 620) is taught on the UK campus, and the seminar course (CPH 699) rotates between UK and EKU. The field studies course (CPH 698) is largely taught in the field. This interdisciplinary education familiarizes students with the range of occupational safety and public health issues that they will encounter in their careers. Another great benefit to both the EKU and UK students is the opportunity to take OTIEC short courses at a reduced rate of $100 per course: http://osha.eku.edu/

Internships, Service Learning, and Theses

SSEM has a strong history of placing students in a broad spectrum of work environments to meet their career goals. Since the development of the CARERC, we have created new occupational safety internships through the Center for Economic Development, Entrepreneurship and Technology (CEDET) that is housed within the College of Business and Technology on the EKU campus. We are pleased to note that the following organizations are providing internships for our students in Central Appalachia: Marathon Oil, Ashland Oil, Georgia-Pacific, Amazon.com, Owens Corning, and Aera Energy.

Scotty Dunlap, EdD, CSP
Associate Professor
Safety Security and Emergency Management
College of Justice and Safety
Eastern Kentucky University