AURORA, Colo. (August 18, 2010) – The Mountain and Plains Education and Research Center (MAP ERC), at the Colorado School of Public Health, University of Colorado, has received a five-year, $7.5 million grant to expand the center’s graduate education, research, workforce training and community outreach programs focused on improving worker health and safety. This grant came from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (CDC/NIOSH).

“With the support of NIOSH, we have begun to address the serious shortage of occupational health and safety professionals in the West. Our mission is to improve the health and safety of workers, plain and simple,” said Lee S. Newman, MA, MD, center director and professor of environmental and occupational health at the University of Colorado. “Our graduates gain the necessary skills to help protect workers and reduce the rate of work-related injuries and illnesses in all sectors of the economy from agriculture and oil and gas development, to transportation and manufacturing.”

Since opening in 2007, the MAP ERC has grown to more than 100 faculty members and community partners representing five worker-health disciplines: occupational and environmental medicine, industrial hygiene, ergonomics, health physics, and occupational health psychology. The center provides tuition and stipends to more than 30 students annually, and provides thousands of hours of continuing education for existing occupational health professionals. Additionally, the MAP ERC pilot projects program provides seed funding for 5 to 10 research projects each year in order to accelerate the translation of research into practical improvements for worker safety and health.

As one of 17 CDC/NIOSH funded education and research centers, the MAP ERC provides research and educational support to occupational health professionals located in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota and South Dakota. The MAP ERC is a regional consortium consisting of University of Colorado, Colorado State University, National Jewish Health, Denver Health and Hospital Authority, and the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center.

Contact: Jackie Brinkman, 303-724-1525; [email protected]

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