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Every person has the right to healthy work – a job that pays a living wage, a workplace that is safe, a work environment where everyone is treated with respect, and qualified occupational and environmental health professionals who advocate for their health.

The Great Lakes Center for Occupational Heath and Safety (formerly the Illinois Occupational and Environmental Health and Safety Education and Research Center (Illinois ERC)) was founded in 1977, to address the burden of Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) in the United States by providing state-of-the-art interdisciplinary training for the next generation of OSH practitioners and researchers. The center provides masters and doctoral training in industrial hygiene, occupational safety, occupational and environmental epidemiology, agricultural health and safety, and occupational medicine and coordinates continuing education and outreach activities to enhance worker health and safety. The Great Lakes Center for Occupational Health and Safety is one of eighteen Education and Research Centers funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

It is the ambition of the Great Lakes Center for Occupational Health and Safety to improve, promote, and maintain the health of workers and communities. We do this through innovative and interdisciplinary activities that:

  • Educate graduate students to be professionals and researchers in occupational and environmental health and safety
  • Prepare professionals to be leaders and practitioners in their disciplines
  • Enhance the expertise of employers, worker organizations, and communities through outreach and technical assistance
  • Enrich the knowledge base for solving current and future problems
  • Foster networks of professionals and organizations that advocate for and raise awareness of occupational and environmental health and safety issues
  • Communicate needs and solutions broadly to all stakeholders