Engineering Tech Students Help Ensure Employee Safety

Engineering technology students are getting hands-on experience, putting the knowledge they are learning in the classroom on how to protect the safety of workers in a real-life situation, thanks to G&W Electric in Bolingbrook, Il. G&W reached out to NIU for help with benchmarking its noise safety program to determine higher noise areas. The students will map the noise levels and conduct spot checks using dosimeters and noise meters.

Engineering Technology Professor Theodore Hogan, Ph.D. who teaches environmental health and safety (EHS) courses at NIU’s College of Engineering and Engineering Technology (CEET) worked with G&W to set up the noise monitoring project for students. “It’s been a great partnership that provides an important learning experience while helping a growing company that values workplace safety,” said Hogan.

Twelve students in Hogan’s Tech 436/536 class are monitoring noise levels in the G&W facility on three dates in April. The results will help the company reduce noise in its facilities. G&W funded the calibration of the NIU noise meters, a costly process that will benefit the school and students as well. According to the company website, G&W Electric engineers flexible solutions for companies in the utility, industrial and commercial sectors.

“As G&W has grown, so has the need for more equipment,” explained G&W EHS Specialist Samia Mall. “With the incredible support of Northern Illinois University’s students and Dr. Theodore Hogan, G&W is conducting a proactive approach to quantify potential employee exposures to noise during normal operations.”

Hogan went on to explain that many EHS graduates have used this kind of experience to land jobs in EHS.

“This is exactly the kind of industry collaboration and hands-on experience for students that we continually seek out as a way to mutually benefit our students and industry sponsors as well,” said Dean of CEET Donald Peterson, Ph.D. “We are grateful for G&W’s support and involvement.”

Environmental health and safety is an emphasis of the bachelor’s of science degree in Engineering Technology, Industrial Management and Technology.

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