Northwestern University Safety Engineer in Evanston, Illinois

Job Summary:

Under departmental direction, the Safety Engineer administers comprehensive environmental health and safety programs to Northwestern University's campus and research departments. The primary function of this position is to oversee safety compliance of research laboratories, including inspecting assigned research spaces, providing documentation and follow up of findings, and preparing summary reports of identified safety hazards. This position focuses specifically on program support for the McCormick School of Engineering.

Please note: Must carry a cell phone, pager at all times while at work. May be required to wear a pager during off-hours. Incumbent must be physically capable of hazardous materials response: wearing chemical protective clothing and a self-contained breathing apparatus (including respirators) during emergency response. Must pass pre-employment physical screening. Fit to carry 50lbs, walk extensively. Must have no medical condition that would interfere with performing essential job functions.

Job Scope

This position performs risk assessments, hazard analysis, safety audits and promotes safe work practices for Northwestern University research laboratories. The incumbent will work with the principal investigators, researchers and administrators in assigned departments to develop policies, procedures and strategies to mitigate occupational safety hazards on campus. This role will serve as a specialist for the laboratory safety group in Evanston. Safety support services include process safety improvements, laboratory design recommendations, guidance on hazardous waste operations, response to laboratory emergencies, incident investigations and other responsibilities as needed.

Specific Responsibilities:

  • Works with principal investigators and researchers to integrate safety procedures into laboratory operations. Promotes safe work practices based on regulatory requirements, incident experience, best management practice, and University policy. Performs hazard analysis, industrial hygiene assessments, safety audits, and drafts performance reports. Works with lab safety team to make recommendations on appropriate laboratory safety practices and hazard mitigation. Use safety management systems for documentation and metrics.
  • Collaborates and leads the development of guidelines, training content and standard operating procedures for the more complex or novel safety operations. Advise NU personnel on safety engineering controls, process safety improvements and laboratory design recommendations. Partners with other NU departments or contractors to complete safety projects as needed.
  • Reviews new regulatory requirements for applicability and assess the impact of new or proposed regulations on laboratory safety resource needs. Researches scientific publications and other academic safety programs for innovative approaches to safety operations and develops recommendations for improvements or simplification. Organizes and presents content at departmental safety meetings.
  • Serves as a “First Responder” for HAZMAT and laboratory emergencies on campus. Individual must willing to carry a cell phone, pager at while at work and occasionally provide after hours and weekend support for emergencies when needed. Capable of wearing up to Level B PPE and SCBA. Assist with training and outreach with emergency response authorities.
  • Performs other technical and administrative responsibilities as directed. Improves own professional skills through conferences, professional development, training and acquiring certifications.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree in the engineering sciences, physical sciences or safety program.
  • 2-3 years of work experience in engineering, laboratory science or safety related field.
  • Must pass pre-employment physical screening. Fit to carry 50lbs, walk extensively, and be medically approved to wear chemical protective clothing including respirators. Must have no medical condition that would interfere with performing essential job functions.

Minimum Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities.)

  • Adept learner capable of receiving training and coaching in advanced subject matter such as science or technology and mastering material over time.
  • Excellent organizational, interpersonal, and communication skills. Ability to work with individuals from many cultural backgrounds and varying language skills.
  • Demonstrated written and oral presentation skills, ability to keep careful records, complete assigned forms, follow up as necessary to meet identified needs.
  • Self-motivated to work independently following established policies and procedures.
  • Excellent skills in computer programs and applications.
  • Excellent skills in problem solving, time management, teamwork and project management.
  • Outstanding ability to set priorities, to meet deadlines, and to work independently.
  • Outstanding ability to take initiative and manage projects with minimum supervision.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Master's degree in the engineering sciences, physical sciences or safety program.
  • 3-5 years of work experience in engineering, laboratory science or safety related field.
  • Advanced certifications such as Professional Engineer (PE), Certified Safety Professional (CSP), Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) or Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM).
  • Knowledge of EHS safety systems, equipment and reporting metrics.

Preferred Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities)

  • Professional level certifications in areas such as OSHA, HAZWOPER, Safety, First Aid, Emergency Response.
  • Experience working within an academic research institution.
  • Experience developing and conducting training in various EHS topics.
  • Experience recognizing hazards and conducting inspections.
  • Participation and response in HAZMAT emergencies.
  • Experience addressing employee environmental health and safety concerns.
  • Implementing environmental health and safety programs.
  • Performing environmental or occupational sampling and preparing technical reports.

Northwestern University is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer of all protected classes, including veterans and individuals with disabilities. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply. Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the United States.

Regular/Temporary: Regular

Job ID: 34894

Full/Part Time: Part-Time

Location: Evanston, Illinois

Job Title: Safety Engineer