(ROSENBERG, Texas) – Texas State Technical College’s Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance program gives students the experience and training they need to pursue successful careers in a variety of industries.
After all, companies both big and small need professionals on hand to help maintain the safety of their employees and compliance of their operations.
These are the top three things to know about TSTC’s Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance program and the opportunities it can provide:
1. The certifications that students earn in TSTC’s Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance program make them highly marketable to employers.
When TSTC Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance graduates leave the program, a powerful curriculum and an Associate of Applied Science degree are not the only resources they take away from the experience.
They also leave with several Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) certifications, a CPR certification, and a Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) certification.
“We give a really impressive package as far as certifications are concerned,” said Andrea Skinner-Creeks, a TSTC Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance instructor. “It gives you a great level of exposure.”
Some students who may already have one type of certification — an OSHA certification for construction, for instance — can leave the program with additional certifications, such as an OSHA general industry certification, for a wider range of opportunities.
Certifications cover aspects in both occupational safety and environmental compliance — a powerful combination, Skinner-Creeks added.
“It gives you a complete window of coverage,” she said.
2. Safety and compliance professionals will always be in high demand in the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land metropolitan area.
Texas employs the highest number of occupational health and safety technicians in the nation, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land metropolitan area has the third-highest employment level of these positions in the country.
“This is Houston,” Skinner-Creeks said. “This is Texas. Everybody’s headquartered here — lots of industry. We have the oil and gas companies that are here. We have a lot of chemical plants. A lot of manufacturers. There’s never going to be a shortage of jobs (in the health and safety industry).”
Occupational safety and environmental compliance professionals have the added advantage of being able to pursue their passions at companies within either focus — safety or environmental, Skinner-Creeks added.
In the Houston area, occupational health and safety technicians can earn an average median salary of $58,170, according to onetonline.org, which forecasts the number of these positions in the state to grow by 16% through 2028.
3. TSTC’s Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance instructors draw on their experience working in the industry to instruct students in the program.
Skinner-Creeks, for example, worked in the oil and gas and chemical industries for years before she became an instructor in the Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance program at TSTC’s campus in Fort Bend County.
She often incorporates the lessons that she learned while on the job into the lessons that she teaches TSTC students.
“It’s not just us teaching book knowledge,” Skinner-Creeks said. “We have actual experience from industry that we give to students, and it gives them the edge over somebody else. If I’ve actually been out there and I’ve actually seen and can bring up certain scenarios and instances, then it makes it far more valuable than just creating a PowerPoint from a book.”
TSTC offers training in Occupational Safety and Environmental Compliance at its Breckenridge, Fort Bend County and Waco campuses.
June marks National Safety Month.
Registration for TSTC’s fall semester is underway. Learn more at tstc.edu.