CSHEMA Symposia provide opportunities for professionals to learn about and discuss pertinent issues related to specified subject matter.

Upcoming Symposia

Virtual Spring Symposium

Collaboration | April 27-28, 2021

The theme for this years Spring Symposium is COLLABORATION.
Members: $199 | Non-Members: $259
More information on registration and sessions can be found below.

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Spring Sessions

Who is Fay M. Thompson?

Presented by Bruce Bakus, Assistant Vice Chancellor, Environmental Health and Safety
Who is Fay M. Thompson, PhD, and why is CSHEMA's Scholarship named after her? Learn about this pioneering and important leader from CSHEMA's past.

Learn more about Bruce here. 

Safety Monitors – A Partnership for a Successful Building Emergency Evacuation Program

Presented by Darius Griffin, EHS Director, UNC Charlotte
A successful building emergency evacuation program in a University setting requires collaboration with internal and external stakeholders. This presentation will address the practices and challenges in developing a robust building emergency evacuation program and designating personnel to assist with the evacuation (Safety Monitors).

Learn more about Darius here. 

Works Better in Training – Humor or Narrative?

Presented by Jonathan Klane, BioRAFT
Humor and stories are both used in training, but which one works better? Most trainers use both without considering their effectiveness, so we decided to test it empirically.

We studied 3 biomedical engineering classes using identical topics delivered differently in dual-sections. We measured learning-transfer using pre/post-training quizzes including post 2 weeks and end of the semester (to test retention). We separated out ‘attitude’ via post-training surveys on the training/trainer. We got good results. Are you curious?  Come learn what we did and our results!

Learn more about Jonathan here. 

Covid-19 A New Ongoing Challenge for Facility Services

Presented by Dennis A. Terpin, Retired University of Illinois, Chicago
We all recognize that our Colleges and Universities may experience challenges in complying with certain provisions of the all the new safety related guidelines and standards because of the COVID-19 pandemic, including those standards require the use of certain types of face coverings, PPE, respirators with may can include provisions for medical evaluation, medical surveillance, fit testing, and job specific and performance-based training for the affected employees. Let’s explore the potential impacts on our campuses.

Learn more about Dennis here. 

Enlisting the community to enhance laboratory safety: the Chemical Safely Library Case Study

Presented by Carmen Nitsche, General Manager, Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre
When an accident in the lab occurs, one tries to learn from it so it does not happen again. But how do you share such learnings across organizations? The Chemical Safely Library project at the Pistoia Alliance tackled this issue through a collaborative, crowd-sourced approach. The team focused on laboratory reaction incidents and near misses with the aim of creating a freely available database made up from community contributed learnings. CAS, A Division of the American Chemical Society, recently rebuilt and is hosting the platform. We hope the CSHEMA community will help grow the resource.

Learn more about Carmen here. 

Fume Hood Monitoring Optimization: A Collaboration Between EH&S, Facilities, and the Academic Units

Presented by Erica Gonzaga, Associate Director for Research Services, University of Florida and
James Fleetwood, Director of Safety and Security, CoE, University of Florida

Conducting repairs of fume hoods that were out of service frequently required a multi-step approach from departmental and lab staff including parallel lines of communication with EH&S and Facilities. This process often resulted in miscommunication and the delay of repairs. This presentation focuses on the collaborative approach between EH&S, Facilities Services, and the academic units to optimize and streamline the process for fume hood monitoring and maintenance. The goal was to increase safety for Facilities personnel, decrease the required paperwork, and automate the process for lab staff.

Learn more about Erica and James here. 

Effective collaboration to address communicable disease outbreaks on campus: The University of Washington Advisory Committee

Presented by Sheryl Schwartz, EH&S Assistant Director for Campus Preventive Health, Univ. of Washington
The UW ACCD, established in 1986, is comprised of tri-campus stakeholders, including housing & food services, EH&S, student health center, emergency management, HR, media relations, public health, UW Medicine, and more. Typically, ACCD works on vaccination policies and pandemic planning. During the COVID-19 pandemic, ACCD meets regularly (virtually) to discuss emerging issues, monitor the outbreak, assess its impact on UW, share information and diverse perspectives, provide recommendations to UW leadership, and shape guidance to the UW community. Currently, EH&S leads and supports ACCD.

Learn more about Sheryl here.

Field Safety Avengers Assemble!

Presented by Anthony Appleton, Research Safety Culture Coordinator, Colorado State University
Field Research at Colorado State University takes place everywhere: agriculture and forestry in our own backyard to international veterinarian experiences to arctic research and seemingly everywhere in between. And yet, 150 years into our existence, we still did not have unifying guidance on conducting field research safely. A diverse team was needed to develop a usable document, "Considerations for Field Work." This work involved EHS, Risk Management, Biosafety, PIs, Directors, and Research Associate Deans working remotely using MS Teams.

Learn more about Anthony here. 

The evolution of the Northwest Regional EHS Directors’ Conference Call

Scott Jaqua, Assistant Director of EHS / Radiation Safety Officer, Portland State University
The CSHEMA community understands more than most that knowing what others are doing and have done to solve problems builds creativity, enhanced regulatory compliance, and communal experiences.  The EHS Directors’ Conference Calls began as an administrative function at the state level, but due to funding cuts and lack of a champion, nearly died before Portland State resurrected it.  Now there are 17 members, representing 14 institutions of higher education, across Oregon and Southwest Washington. 

Learn more about Scott here. 

Engaging Department Administrative Staff in Supporting Lab Safety

Alex Hagen, Lab Safety Specialist, EH&S, University of Washington
Department administrators at the University of Washington (UW) are the personnel who assist with o-boarding new principal investigators (PIs), purchasing equipment, addressing safety concerns, and clearing out old research spaces. There are approximately 1000 research groups at UW that are spread out among 80 different departments. Informing department administrators of what is expected of PIs and what it means to be in compliance at a university, state, and federal level is valuable for the entire research community on our campus. UW Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) provides this information to our administrators through a Laboratory Safety & Compliance training tailored specifically for them. This training along with tools to promote lab safety practices has increased administrators’ engagement with EH&S and strengthened the lab safety culture on our campus.

Learn more about Alex here. 


Participate in this year's Symposia to contiue purposeful, quality communication all while building brand awareness amongst a network of EHS professionals in higher education. 

To view our sponsorship offerings, click here.

For questions, please reach out to Kate Feuling at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Past Symposia

Virtual Fall Symposium

Training & Communication | November 16-17, 2020

Join CSHEMA to discuss innovative EHS training and communication methods. We will consider how to incorporate and encourage effective training and communication methods at our institutions, share best practices, and learn how we can better collaborate with each other, our students, and our researchers.

To see the schedule and presentation topics, click here

Special Thanks to our 2021 Symposia Sponsors

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