Occupational Safety Schools and Colleges in the U.S.

Occupational safety technicians and specialists help prevent hazards and mistakes in the workplace. Several programs are available for individuals interested in the industry, and there are a few things to look for when choosing an occupational safety school.

How to Select an Occupational Safety School

The two types of occupational safety positions, technicians and specialists, require different educational backgrounds. Occupational safety technicians typically have an associate's degree, certificate or on-the-job training; specialists earn a bachelor's degree because they have more extensive responsibility and research. Students looking into an occupational safety career should decide their career path before narrowing down their school choice.

Associate's degree or certificate programs that adhere to the federal standards for occupational safety are appropriate for students who choose the technician route. Some course topics to look for include safety management, hazard communication and worker's compensation. One component that is important to occupational safety schools, regardless of degree level, is an internship. Field experience is crucial and hands-on training benefits postsecondary students.

Students who want to become specialists should choose schools with a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Occupational Safety program. The procedures of regulation agencies, such as the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), need to be followed. Classes include industrial hygiene, hazardous materials, construction safety, ergonomics and toxicology. The course of study needs to be broad because there are many types of occupational safety specialists working for a variety of businesses.

Schools with the Largest Overall Student Enrollment

College/University Student Population Institution Type
Indiana University-Bloomington 40,354 4-year, Public
University of Southern California 33,747 4-year, Private not-for-profit
St. Petersburg College 26,659 4-year, primarily associate's, Public
University of Connecticut 24,273 4-year, Public
Grand Valley State University 23,892 4-year, Public
University of Alaska Anchorage 16,649 4-year, Public
University of Central Oklahoma 15,724 4-year, Public
Southeastern Louisiana University 15,215 4-year, Public
Rochester Institute of Technology 15,055 4-year, Private not-for-profit
Indiana University of Pennsylvania-Main Campus 14,310 4-year, Public
Marshall University 13,573 4-year, Public
University of North Dakota 12,748 4-year, Public
University of Houston-Downtown 12,283 4-year, Public
University of Minnesota-Duluth 11,366 4-year, Public
University of Central Missouri 11,063 4-year, Public
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater 10,962 4-year, Public
Indiana State University 10,457 4-year, Public
Murray State University 10,014 4-year, Public
Jacksonville State University 9,481 4-year, Public
University of Wisconsin-Stout 8,839 4-year, Public

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