BAYTOWN, TEXAS – ExxonMobil’s Baytown Technology and Engineering Center recently hosted 80 graduate students from six universities for its annual Partners in Academic Laboratory Safety (PALS) Workshop.
Now in its fifth year, the PALS program establishes mentoring relationships between ExxonMobil and faculty, staff and students from partner universities to enhance laboratory safety culture. The workshop was established after ExxonMobil recognized new employees needed additional lab safety training besides what was offered at their universities.
“Safety is a core value at ExxonMobil,” said Dirk Michiels, Global Polymers Technology Manager. “This program shares ideas and best practices to help ensure students have adequate laboratory safety training incorporated into their curriculums and we learn a lot from the students and universities as well.”
Students from Texas A&M, University of Texas, University of Houston, University of Florida, Georgia Tech, and Washington University in St. Louis participated in ExxonMobil laboratory tours to highlight different aspects of laboratory safety, including rotating equipment and chemical handling, to documentation and engineering controls. Each university presented on its current lab safety programs to seek feedback to improve their programs.
“Our partnership with ExxonMobil and the other universities has been invaluable,” said Amy Haberman, director of laboratory safety at the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering at the University of Florida. “ExxonMobil’s core value of “Nobody Gets Hurt” is one we can all adopt and apply to our work practices, and our students have implemented best practices to advance safety culture at our labs.”
ExxonMobil continues to explore opportunities to expand the PALS program to other universities, and a similar safety workshop is held every year at its technology center in Shanghai, China.
ExxonMobil, the largest publicly traded international oil and gas company, uses technology and innovation to help meet the world’s growing energy needs. ExxonMobil holds an industry-leading inventory of resources, is one of the largest refiners and marketers of petroleum products, and its chemical company is one of the largest in the world. For more information, visit www.exxonmobil.com or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/exxonmobil.