Author: Blain, Ashley

Strengthening Safety Culture Workshop

Led by Caroline Donaghy, University of Connecticut and
Srijana Pandey, Ohio University
Sunday, March 03, 2024, 2 – 5:30 PM Eastern Time

We are excited to announce the upcoming ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety Virtual Workshop “Empowering Academic Researchers to Strengthen Safety Culture”, scheduled for Sunday, March 03, 2024, from 2:00 PM to 5:30 PM ET, and will be hosted via Zoom. 

**About the Workshop:**

This interactive workshop provides an opportunity for frontline researchers in academic institutions to learn more about safety culture and gain skills to be leaders in safety. Our target audience is graduate students, postdocs, and undergraduates in STEM departments, but we also welcome faculty and safety professionals interested in supporting the development of Laboratory Safety Teams (LST) and strengthening their institution’s safety culture. 

If your department has already established an LST, this workshop can also help it grow and mature as well as build connections among students across universities who are working hard to strengthen their safety culture.

**Registration Details:**

The registration fee for this virtual workshop is only $25 per attendee. Secure your spot by registering before Friday, March 01, 2024. For more information and to register, please visit the official workshop page 


Upon completion, attendees will receive a certificate of participation, a valuable addition to your resume or portfolio.

**Learn More:**

CHAS LST Workshop Page: 

ACS LST Webpage 

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New Director of Environmental Health and Safety Announced

Sent on behalf of AVP Hans Rhynhart

I am pleased to announce the promotion and appointment of Brent Lewchik as the Director of Environmental Health and Safety for the University of Connecticut, for Storrs and the regional campuses. Director Lewchik graduated from UConn with an undergraduate degree in molecular cell biology, and holds a Master of Science degree in biology, with an emphasis on public health, from the University of St. Joseph. Brent has over 23 years of experience in environmental health and safety, with 21 of those years here at UConn. Leading within UConn’s environmental health and safety program, he has led the development and implementation of policies and education programs to protect workers and to ensure compliance with local, state, and federal regulations. Additionally, he has overseen the application of nationally recognized standards regarding chemical hygiene, controlled substances, hazardous, biomedical, and other regulated wastes.

As the University’s Chemical Safety Manager, Brent interfaced with and served as liaison for a multitude of state and federal regulatory agencies, addressing compliance issues and concerns in UConn’s laboratories and infrastructure. As the University’s Chemical Hygiene Officer, and a member of the University of Connecticut Chemical Hygiene Committee, Brent managed both the Chemical Safety and Regulated Waste Groups.

Brent has a demonstrated drive to promote a strong safety culture with faculty, staff and students while collaborating with multiple departments across UConn. He has been instrumental in the creation of guidance documents, standard operating procedures, and other educational products to ensure the proper management of hazardous chemicals, controlled substances, and explosives, as well as their associated recordkeeping for students, staff, and faculty engaged in teaching, research, and emergency response. The University of Connecticut is fortunate to have such dedication and commitment to a proactive safety culture within its workforce, and will continue to benefit from his leadership in his new role.

Brent replaces Director Terri Dominguez, who retired from her position in July of 2022, having served the University for over 31 years. Director Dominguez has been instrumental in ensuring a successful transition for this vital role for both the Department and the University.

My thanks to the members of the search committee: Christopher Renshaw (chair), Karen Moré, Colleen Bridgeman, Paulo Verardi, Nathan Alder, Michael Jednak, Stephanie Marks and David Cavallaro.

Please join me in congratulating Director Lewchik.

Hans D. Rhynhart

Associate Vice President

University Safety