SOUTHEAST KANSAS — A Southeast Kansas college professor is receiving recognition as Safety Professional of the Year.
He was honored to be recognized by the Heart of America chapter of the American Society of Safety Professionals. However he sees this award more than celebrating himself, he sees it about celebrating the program he and his fellow staff and students have built at the school.
Cliff Morris, School of Construction Faculty, said, “With that he’s had an impact on the safety profession and students and students out in the industry.”
Being crowned safety professional of the year is a big deal for Pittsburg State University Professor Pat Flynn. However he’s seeing this as something more.
Pat Flynn, School of Construction Faculty, said, “More so from an individual recognition standpoint, I see it more as a recognition of our program that we’ve developed here of the past 10, 12 years.”
A program which helps its students tremendously. After graduating the environmental and safety management program places one hundred percent of its students in paying jobs.
“One of the reasons that we have such a high success rate with our placement is the fact that Pittsburg State University has transitioned to maybe from the past to the future.”
By providing a different kind of education, making sure the students are well equipped with real world experience.
“We like to get out of the classroom when appropriate to do hands-on learning,” said Morris.
“That enables the student to not only hear about it, or read about it in the textbook or perform an assignment associated with it, but they’re actually going to go out to do what we’re trying to communicate,” said Flynn.
Making sure those students can handle anything that comes their way once they walk across the stage at graduation.
“What we try to convey to our students, and I have been quite successful or we wouldn’t have received this recognition is that they do walk out and understand the why side.”
This program has helped students enter the workforce not only in Southeast Kansas, but all over the state and country. Thanks to the help of the program, it’s estimated students make roughly 55 to 65 thousand dollars a year post graduation.