Environmental and occupational health (EOH) professionals work and serve in a variety of settings. Many of the University academic programs include internship experiences, helping the student explore opportunities. Work settings open to environmental and occupational health professionals include:
EOH professionals are needed at national, state, county, and municipal- levels. Physicians provide care for federal employees or serve as program administrators. Environmental assessors work in both compliance and policy areas. Industrial hygienists may serve as inspectors for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) or (MSHA). EOH professionals provide the scientific basis for public policy decisions.
Community based organizations and public school systems, serve as the setting for many EHS professionals. They may serve as community-based advocates or advisors to community-based non-governmental organizations.
Corporations employ a wide variety of environmental/occupational health professionals. Some work at the level of the individual plant, such as industrial hygienists protecting the employees in a particular manufacturing facility or clinicians providing direct care. Health education and outreach are also provided in some corporations and communities by EHS professionals. Other corporate roles include developing corporate policies in such roles as health and safety director or director of sustainability and developing systems for compliance with EPA, OSHA and other regulations.
Occupational and environmental conditions often differ among countries. Many environmental health professionals serve in international roles. For example, sanitarians establish safe potable water and sewage facilities for public and corporate users in numerous countries. Mining health experts work with colleagues in many countries to create safer operations.
Occupational/preventive medicine physicians and occupational health nurses provide clinical services for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of work-related illnesses. They also focus upon promoting healthy lifestyles. Many clinical occupational professionals provide services to employees of large medical centers.
Private Consulting Companies
Virtually every environmental health specialty service is available from private consulting companies. Ergonomists, organizational behavior psychologists, exposure and risk assessment experts, clinical program designers, industrial hygienists, and toxicologists often serve as private consultants to industry and government agencies.
Academic and Research
Numerous opportunities in universities and government agencies (e.g., NIOSH, EPA) are available to well-qualified environmental health graduates. The diversity of professional backgrounds of the University of Arizona EHS faculty illustrates the breadth of multidisciplinary academic units. The section includes professors with professional backgrounds in environmental/occupational medicine, industrial hygiene, toxicology, microbiology, risk assessment, engineering, and geology.