Environmental Health and Safety
The Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) degree within the Department of Public and Environmental Wellness provides a course-based and experiential education in environmental health, occupational safety and industrial hygiene concepts. This specialized discipline focuses on protecting people, property and the environment.
Nationally ranked and widely respected, the program is led by pioneering faculty who are pushing the boundaries of environmental health and safety. In this program, you will develop expertise in identifying risks, evaluating and mitigating hazards before they cause damage or harm. When you graduate, you will be prepared to become effective safety and health professionals.
The EHS program courses are delivered online either asynchronous or as hybrid online offerings with asynchronous and synchronous classes. Synchronous online courses are typically held Monday through Friday in the evenings or on Saturdays to accommodate working students.
The Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health and Safety and Master of Science in Safety Management are accredited by the Applied Science Accreditation Commission of ABET.
Environmental Health and Safety Major
The curriculum in this program spans the basic sciences, applied safety sciences and management principles essential for success as a safety professional. Course requirements for the Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health and Safety can be viewed in the Undergraduate Catalog (see Curricular Requirements).
View the schedule of classes for current course offerings (click Course Catalog, select Fall Semester 2023 and search EHS undergraduate course level).
The EHS program prepares students to:
- Analyze and interpret data necessary to resolve environmental health and safety related issues
- Identify and evaluate environmental and workplace hazardous conditions and practices
- Formulate hazard control designs, methods, procedures and programs
- Recognize the impact of solutions within a global and societal context
- Become proficient in written composition and oral communications
- Pursue graduate study in safety and health
Programs that are offered 100% online conduct all of the classroom hours online. Any synchronous aspects of the course will be listed in the schedule of classes. If any part of a 100% online course requires the student to come to campus, an online or ‘local to the student’ alternative will be made available.
Hybrid (Partially Online)
If a program is offered partially online, it means that there is some combination of online and on-campus coursework. Partially online programs at Oakland University are 50-99% online.
Explore OU's online learning assessment to find out whether an online program is right for you.
Program Educational Objectives for the BS in Environmental Health & Safety (Revised February 5, 2021)
- Demonstrate effective technical competencies in recognizing, evaluating and controlling workplace EHS risks and hazards.
- Analyze, develop, and evaluate cost-effective EHS programs and safe operating procedures.
- Work collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders including labor, management, and the community to build a safe and productive organization.
- Apply sound design methodology in multidisciplinary areas to measure, evaluate and analyze EHS performance.
- Uphold professional, environmental, cultural, diverse, and ethical standards in EHS practice.
- Continue professional advancement through life-long learning opportunities such as graduate study and certification.
- Effectively apply appropriate scientific methodologies when utilizing EHS standards, regulations and codes.
- Demonstrate effective oral and written communication skills.
- Demonstrate commitment to the profession through active participation in EHS organizations.
Environmental Health & Safety Student Outcomes (Revised February 5, 2021)
Baccalaureate degree students graduating from the Environmental Health and Safety program at Oakland University will be able to:
- Demonstrate competency in applying concepts and creating programs related to environmental safety, compliance, and stewardship.
- Utilize the techniques, skills and modern scientific and technical tools necessary for professional practice.
- Demonstrate proficiency in written composition and oral communications.
- Apply science knowledge to solve problems using algebra, statistics, human physiology and anatomy, physics, chemistry, and engineering technology as it pertains to EHS practice.
- Anticipate, recognize, evaluate, and develop control strategies for hazardous conditions and work practices.
- Identify and apply appropriate standards, regulations, codes, and best practices for hazard control and work programs.
- Work effectively on diverse teams or team projects.
- Design, conduct experiments, analyze and interpret data to provide control solutions to EHS issues.
- Know and demonstrate the ethical responsibilities of EHS professionals.
- Integrate contemporary EHS issues and the impacts of their solutions within a global and societal context.
Oakland University’s School of Health Sciences offers several options to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Health and Safety. The programs are designed to help you get quality training and enter a new career as quickly as possible.
Admissions criteria, program requirements and completion times vary for each track.
The School of Health Sciences offers holders of an associate degree in Occupational Safety and Health from Trinidad State Junior College (TSJC) an opportunity to earn a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) through an articulation agreement. The student outcomes and educational objectives established for the BS-EHS program are the same for traditional and TSJC students, including course objectives and teaching methodologies.
Students seeking a BS-EHS degree must complete a minimum of 125 credits as outlined above. The minimum required courses may be satisfied through a combination of credits delivered by Oakland University and up to 70 transfer credits Trinidad State Junior College. A minimum of 32 credits must be upper division credits from Oakland University.
Students who have satisfactorily completed an Associate Degree in Occupational Health and Safety (OSH) at TSJC may apply for admission to the BS-EHS degree completion program at Oakland University. These students will have the following benefits:
- PSY 268 will count in Oakland University’s Social Science General Education category
- EHS 1000/1150 requirement will be satisfied
- HS 2000 will be satisfied
With the level 2 certificate in Safety and Health Management Systems from the MIOSHA Training Institute, you can be on the fast track to earning a bachelor's degree in Environmental Health and Safety at Oakland University, receive competency credits as well as transfer credits for college courses you've already completed, saving you time and money. ABA-accredited and designated as a qualified academic program by the board of certified safety professionals. We offer flexible options for online, in-person, or hybrid classes. Take your career to the next level with the MIOSHA training institute, Oakland University degree completion pathway.
Professionals who have a valid MTI Level 2 Safety and Health Management Systems (SHMS) certificate are eligible to receive up to 11 credits toward the BS-EHS degree.
On September 21, 2017, the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) and Oakland University formed a new alliance establishing the MIOSHA Training Institute (MTI) to Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health and Safety degree program. This new program is available to those students who have a valid MTI Level 2 Safety and Health Management Systems (SHMS) certificate. Students who have the aforementioned certificate from MTI are eligible to receive up to 11 credits toward the BS-EHS at Oakland University.
Students seeking a BS-EHS degree must complete a minimum of 125 credits as outlined in the official Oakland University catalog. The minimum required courses may be satisfied through a combination of credits delivered by Oakland University, transfer credits from regionally accredited institutions of higher education, and MTI competency credits. A minimum of 32 credits must be upper division credits from Oakland University. In order to receive a BS-EHS degree, each student must meet all the requirements of the program. See the current Undergraduate Catalog for a complete list of program requirements and list of courses.
The following courses are eligible for competency credit (up to a maximum of 11 credits) through the MTI-OU program:
- Either EHS 1000 Introduction to Environmental Health and Safety (1 credit) or EHS 1150 Environmental Health and Safety at Work (2 credits)
- EHS 2350 Occupational Safety and Health Standards (3 credits)
- EHS 3300 Safety and Health Administration Programs (3 credits)
- EHS 4410 Accident Investigation and Analysis (3 credits)
- All students are required to apply directly to Oakland University via the Office of Undergraduate Admissions and satisfy all university admissions requirements.
- When completing the admissions application, be sure to select the correct major (Environmental Health and Safety). Prospective students have the option to select the major as main campus or completely online.
- Work with the SHS Advising Office and the program director to determine which competency courses are necessary based on the student’s MIOSHA level 2 certification (Official MTI documentation will be required). Each student will need to determine which semesters the competency courses will be completed.
- Students will need to complete and submit the Competency Exam Form to the Registrar in order to register for a competency exam. Competency exams must be completed within the first six weeks of the semester.
- Upon passing the competency exam, you will receive credit for the course toward your degree.
Certified Safety Professionals are eligible to receive 22 competency credits toward the BS-EHS degree.
The School of Health Sciences offers the Certified Safety Professional (CSP) an opportunity to earn a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health and Safety through a CSP to BS-EHS completion program. The student outcomes and educational objectives are the same for traditional and CSP students, including course objectives and teaching methodologies. See the Undergraduate Catalog for curriculum details.
Students who have satisfactorily completed a regionally accredited associate or baccalaureate degree and who possess a valid, current CSP certification may apply for admission to the CSP to BS-EHS degree completion program. A cumulative GPA of C+ or better is required for admission to the CSP to BS-EHS degree completion sequence.
Certified safety professionals with a GPA below C+ may be admitted to the university under pre-CSP – EHS status and change to CSP to BS-EHS status upon completion of a minimum of 12 credits (applicable to the EHS program) at Oakland University with a GPA of C+ or higher.
Certified safety professionals must complete all credits and/or courses required in the BS-EHS degree program. Completion may be achieved in the following manner:
- Graduates from a regionally accredited associate or bachelor degree program may transfer a maximum of 62 credits from community colleges that apply to the BS-EHS degree program requirements. In addition, 22 Environmental Health and Safety credits will be granted through a course competency process. This process includes:
- successful completion of the CSP examination.
- evidence of a valid, current CSP certification.
- registration for competency credits as per the OU Undergraduate Catalog.
- registration for approved competency credit courses to include EHS 1000, 2250, 2350, 3300, 3380, 3330, 4410, and 4420.
- Students seeking a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Environmental Health and Safety must complete a minimum of 125 credits as outlined in official Oakland University catalog. The minimum required courses may be satisfied through a combination of credits delivered by Oakland University, transfer credits from regionally accredited institutions of higher education, and CSP competency credits. A minimum of 32 credits must be upper division credits from Oakland University.
OU's EHS program boasts a job placement record of nearly 100 percent; students routinely receive job offers before graduation.
Exciting career opportunities for graduates may be found in virtually every occupational setting in both the public and private sector, including construction safety, manufacturing, automotive, oil gas and energy, risk management, industrial hygiene, transportation, and government service at the local, state and federal levels. There are positions for safety professionals in every part of the United States and across the globe.
Average Safety Profession Salary
For information on the average salary of occupational safety and health professionals, visit the 2018 Salary Survey by the American Society of Safety Professionals. Published every two to three years, the report looks at average salary based on education level and certification type, as well as other characteristics.
Another resource is the November 2019 issue of Safety+Health Magazine, which presents the National Safety Council's salary survey findings for 2019. The survey also lists the percent of safety professionals in various age ranges, industries and job titles.
2019 Job Outlook
The April 2019 edition of Safety+Health Magazine published its 2019 job outlook for the safety and health profession.
Internship and Job Postings
Career and Life Design Center posts many internship and job opportunities for the safety and health profession. All postings can be found by logging into Handshake, the career development platform. Visit the site often for the latest opportunities available.
Environmental safety and health is a relatively new, and still emerging career field compared to other professional studies at universities across America. None of today’s safety-related baccalaureate degree programs existed before the U.S. Congress passed the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970. This act represents the first national legislation directed at ensuring the safety and health of America’s working men and women. The Oakland University Occupational Safety and Health baccalaureate degree, established in 1978, was one of the first such programs to respond to this national demand for increased safety and health in the workplace.
Since its beginning, OU's Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health and Safety degree program has met the needs of southeast Michigan’s industrial community in responding to the increased national regulatory focus on workplace safety and health. A strong working relationship developed between this program and automobile manufacturers, many auto parts and equipment suppliers, and a wide variety of other key employers throughout Michigan and beyond. The demand for program graduates is strong and growing across the nation and around the world, as evidenced by demand for a Master of Science in Safety Management degree program.
Combined BS in EHS and OSH
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BS in Environmental Health & Safety (EHS)
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BS in Occupational Safety & Health (OSH)
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Jessica Jannaman, Global Senior Manager of EHS&S, TE Connectivity; Chair, Industry Advisory Board
Dave Andrews, CSP, ARM, Risk Manager, Amerisure
Joshua Boyce, Fire Inspector, Auburn Hills Fire Department
Wendy Burkett, Director, Global Manufacturing Safety, Ford Motor Company
Karly St. Aubin, GSP, EHS Supervisor, Tenneco; Graduate Student Representative, M.S. in Safety Management
Tara Diesbourg, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Environmental Health and Safety, Oakland University
Oscar Rodriguez Franco, PhD., MPH, MBA, CIH, Assistant Professor of Environmental Health and Safety, Oakland University
Malcom E. Dunbar, CSP, President, MDSC LLC.; Vice President of Environmental Health and Safety (Retired), Edw. Levy & Co.; Past Chair, Industry Advisory Board
Patrick R. Frazee, CIH, CSP, Past EHS Program Director, Oakland University; Manager (Retired), Health & Safety North America, General Motors
Kathy Glodich, CSP, Director, Loss Control Service, Accident Fund Insurance Company; Secretary, Industry Advisory Board
Darryl C. Hill, Ph.D., MBA, CSP, Senior Vice President of Safety and Security, FirstGroup America; Director, Environmental, Health & Safety Program, Oakland University
John Bolde, CHSP, CHEP, System Director, Safety and Security, Munson Healthcare
Thomas J. Martin, CIH, CSP, Manager, Safety & Industrial Hygiene, Ramboll Environmental
Karen McGuire, Deputy Safety Director (Retired), U.S. Army Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM)
Aaron Munoz, Managing Director, ARM Cultural Safety Consulting; ASSP Greater Detroit Chapter, Past President
Stephen Perrott, Senior Manager of EHS, Assembly, Stellantis
Thomas W. Schenk, Ph.D., MPH, Global Medical Operations and Corporate Epidemiologist (Retired), General Motors; Director (Retired), Environmental, Health & Safety Program, Oakland University
Jennifer Dixon, Air Quality Liaison for the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy
Deanna Fochesato, Undergraduate Student Representative, B.S. in EHS