ASSE Foundation Fellowships

inASSEdexThe American Society of Safety Engineers Foundation (ASSEF) and the Liberty Mutual Research Institute sponsor an annual series of Safety Research Fellowships.  The fellowship encourages safety research activity and provides a forum for linking safety professionals, industry needs, and quality research programs.  Selected fellows work with Institute researchers at the Hopkinton facility for four to six weeks.  ASSEF provides a stipend, while the Institute provides reasonable access to current research projects, databases, equipment, researchers, and other necessary resources.  Research must result in publication.  Applicants must be United States citizens and possess a Ph.D. degree, or be working towards a masters or Ph.D.

Dr. Paul Ray, 1999

Paul Ray, associate professor of industrial engineering at the University of Alabama, received the 1999 Safety Research Fellowship.  During the summer he collaborated with Institute scientists on a study of maintenance audit scores and injury frequency. A maintenance audit was conducted at 28 manufacturing plants located in Alabama.  The study findings supported the hypothesis that better maintenance was associated with lower injury frequency.

Jeffrey S. Casey, 2001

Jeffrey S. Casey, a graduate student in the Work Environment Program at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell received one of two 2001 Safety Research Fellowships.  During the summer, he collaborated with Liberty Mutual researchers on a biomechanics research project to examine ergonomics in the meat packing industry. As field evaluations in meat packing and other hand-intensive industries often rely on a worker’s ability to estimate his/her grip force at various force levels, Mr. Casey’s project sought to determine the accuracy of these estimates. He looked at several simulated industrial tasks while simultaneously measuring the actual force level.

Dr. Andrew E. Lincoln, 2001

Andrew E. Lincoln, M.S., Sc.D., an assistant research professor at the Center for Injury Research at Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland, received the second of two 2001 Safety Research Fellowships.  He collaborated with Liberty Mutual researchers in the area of low back pain.  For his project, he examined safety reports from particular occupational specialties within the U.S. Army injury and disability database. The study examined the narrative component of the reports to discern the common mechanisms, circumstances or equipment that result in an acute low back injury. He also investigated whether the ergonomic exposure profile and disability experience of specific occupations reflect those mechanisms, circumstances or equipment that cause injury.

David K. Peng, 2002

David K. Peng, a student at the University of Michigan, received one of two 2002 research fellowships.  He completed a six-week tenure at the Research Institute.  Mr. Peng examined glove use for the prevention of acute finger and hand injuries, such as lacerations, crushes, punctures, fractures, dislocations, and amputations. His project focused on reviewing glove use and hand injury prevention literature, categorizing injured workers’ tasks at the time of the injury, and performing a cost savings analysis of glove use in the manufacturing industry.

Michael C. Ho, 2002

Michael C. Ho, M.P.H., M.B.A., a Johns Hopkins University doctoral student, received the second of two 2002 research fellowships. He completed a six-week tenure conducting research at the Institute examining the relationship between workplace injury and safety climate – the shared perceptions among members of an organization with regard to safety policies, procedures, and practices. In this study, he is analyzing the results from a survey of workers to determine work-related injury risk factors. This study formed the basis of Mr. Ho’s doctoral dissertation.

Dr. Victor L. Paquet, 2003

Victor L. Paquet, Sc.D., A.E.P., received the 2003 American Society of Safety Engineers Foundation (ASSEF)/Liberty Mutual Safety Research Fellowship. He was an assistant professor with the Department of Industrial Engineering at the State University of New York – Buffalo. During the summer, Dr. Paquet teamed up with Institute researchers and Visiting Scholar, Svend Erik Mathiassen, Ph.D., to investigate ergonomic exposure assessments for physically demanding production jobs. In a pilot study at the Research Institute, he developed and tested the effectiveness of different strategies for evaluating ergonomic risk factors that could be used by the ergonomists with respect to the number of workers analyzed, the number of cycles recorded, and the number of data collection days. Researchers then assessed several exposure parameters, such as posture, and investigated the effect of different videotape strategies on exposure estimates through statistical procedures.

Dr. Erik C.B. Olsen, 2004

 Erik C.B. Olsen, Ph.D., of Blacksburg, Virginia received the 2004 Safety Research Fellowship.  Dr. Olsen spent five weeks at the Research Institute working with researchers on a study of how mental workload affects workers’ driving performance. For the study, subjects drove an instrumented vehicle around an automotive test track under different conditions, (1) driving safely with a posted speed-limit of 30-mph, (2) maintaining an accurate speed of 15-mph, and (3) following a “clock’ task in which subjects drive at a safe and comfortable speed and mimic aspects of merging lanes and judging gaps. While driving, subjects performed different addition tasks (no task, auditory task, and visual task) as researchers collected data on performance measures and eye movement parameters using a contact-free eye tracker.

Sarah DeArmond, 2005

Sarah DeArmond of Fort Collins, Colorado, received the 2005 American Society of Safety Engineers Foundation/Liberty Mutual Safety Research Fellowship.  Ms. DeArmond spent four weeks at the Institute in an nvestigation examining Chief Financial Executives’ safety attitudes and opinions and their impact on occupational safety outcomes.  In the study, researchers analyzed data from the Liberty Mutual 2004 Chief Financial Executive Survey, which collected information on corporate financial decision-makers’ perceptions of workplace safety. In this survey, the decision makers were asked to rate the importance of different occupational injury causes.  Ms. DeArmond is a doctoral student at Colorado State University.