Blogs

blog_1.jpg

AIHA University: Is Online Professional Development Really Worth It?

By George Daston posted 9 days ago

  


I am pleased to share this message on behalf of AIHA announcing two virtual conferences whose content will be of interest to SOT members. —George P. Daston, PhD, 2020–2021 SOT President

As we navigate our new paradigm of work, we’re challenged to find alternative ways to learn and share with our colleagues. Much of this comes in the shape of virtual education and networking.

To meet this changing need, AIHA University is bringing quality education directly to you via the upcoming Women in IH Leadership Summit, October 21, 2020, and Virtual PDC Week, happening November 16–20, 2020. Between these two events, you can choose from eight popular professional development courses (PDCs), all adapted for online learning.

Each course takes a deep dive into topics affecting worker health and safety, including practical takeaways you can apply to your daily work and the opportunity to connect with experts in your field.

If you’re more of a “hands-on” person, you may be wondering . . . is attending a virtual PDC really worth it? We asked the instructors what each of their courses brings to the table. Here’s what they had to say.

What excites you most about sharing your knowledge regarding this topic?

Sheree L. Gibson, PE, CPE; and Susan Kotowski, PhD, CPE

MSD Risk Assessment: Observational Tools and Checklists

“We’re both really passionate about risk assessment and ergonomics, as it’s something that can literally help prevent injuries and keep people productive and happy. We’ve seen all sorts of things in our careers, and we love the challenge of problem solving and getting to think creatively. Sharing what we know is exciting because we know it can help make a difference in the lives of workers across industries. It is particularly exciting now, as we have recently had several studies confirm the validity of the newer tools we will be using to predict risk.”

Jason Kunz, MS, CIH, CSP

WIH Leadership Summit

“There is always something we can do to become sharper, more effective, more compassionate people and HSE professionals. If we can provide even one item of value to each attendee, so they can move faster in that direction, all the preparation was more than worth it.”

Roberta Smith, MSPH, RN, CIC, COHN-S, CIH

Environmental Surface Disinfectants in Health Care—Part 1 and Part 2

“Environmental surface disinfection has always been important in health care, but with the current COVID-19 crisis, other industries beyond health care have been interested in what disinfection products to use. This PDC would be relevant to those areas with added education on microbiology, the chemistry of disinfectants, and validation methods.”

Who do you think would benefit most from attending your PDC?

Chrisy Walsh, MS, CIH

WIH Leadership Summit

“Everyone. Continual change and learning to see situations and issues from different viewpoints is so important, especially during this time.”

Michael Harris, PhD, CIH

Identifying Welding Exposures and Controls

“Welding and thermal cutting operations are nearly ubiquitous as repair and maintenance tasks, so I think that any safety and health professional would benefit from a discussion of how to handle welding fumes.”

Roberta Smith, MSPH, RN, CIC, COHN-S, CIH

Environmental Surface Disinfectants in Health Care—Part 1 and Part 2

“Those who wish to gain an understanding of disinfection products, how to properly use them, and how to choose which one will work for your needs [will benefit from this session].”

Sheree L. Gibson, PE, CPE; and Susan Kotowski, PhD, CPE

MSD Risk Assessment: Observational Tools and Checklists

“Any safety and health professional whose role includes risk assessment for musculoskeletal disorders in environments, from office to manufacturing to warehousing, and beyond [will benefit from this session]. We’ll start simple for those who are newer to this area of risk assessment and build to the more complex and in-depth assessments.”

How do you think teaching this course virtually will be different from delivering it in person, and/or how have you adapted your PDC to meet the needs of a virtual audience?

Joy Erdman, MS, CIH, CSP

WIH Leadership Summit

“Virtual has the advantages of convenience and lower cost (no travel). While we lose the luxury of face-to-face networking with our colleagues, we are trying to create a unique experience through the chat. I would love to see attendees link up with other attendees and instructors and continue the dialogue after the conference, sort of like mentor support around a common theme.”

Sheree L. Gibson, PE, CPE; and Susan Kotowski, PhD, CPE

MSD Risk Assessment: Observational Tools and Checklists

“We love being in person and practicing hands on: it’s when you really get to try things out and the assessments become “real.” It is also a great place to make mistakes and recognize them in real time. Having conversations about specific problems and challenges people face in their own work environment and how we would approach assessing them has always been one of the favorite parts of our workshops. The good news is we can still do these things virtually. With a few simple tools, people can still practice from home or work, and we’ll be guiding attendees through each step of the process. We’ll also utilize extra videos and pictures to help solidify understanding. And because we are doing the workshops live, we’ll still have opportunities for participants to present their questions, problems, or challenges.”

Michael Harris, PhD, CIH

Identifying Welding Exposures and Controls

“To maintain visual engagement, we included several video clips and graphics.”

Celia Booth, CIH, CSP

WIH Leadership Summit

“We’ve adapted this PDC with attendee polling and participation opportunities to draw everyone into the experience. While I prefer in-person sessions, I learned during AIHce 2020 that relationships can develop with the attendees through the power of the chat. The chat can also be a powerful tool to assist the presenters with ways to make the session better in real time.”

Learning remotely may come with its challenges. But there are passionate professionals out there willing to try new formats and tools to share their expertise.

If you’re interested in learning more about the new online events added to the AIHA University lineup this year, visit the “NEW Virtual Events & Courses FALL 2020” web page.

0 comments
11 views