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250 construction industry professionals attend safety conference at SIUE

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville played host to the SIOSH/SafetyCon Day put on Monday by Southern Illinois Builders Association, the Southern Illinois Construction Advancement Program and others.

siuesibaconferenceThe event welcomed approximately 250 professionals from the construction industry to campus for safety seminars, a keynote presentation and vendor fair.

SIOSH/SafetyCon brings together experts and practitioners in the fields of construction and industry safety, highlighting best practices to create a safe workplace. Among the topics were falling object hazard prevention, control and mitigation, emergency medical response team-development and maintenance, excavation awareness, and implementation of a Behavior Based Safety program. SIOSH stands for Southern Illinois Occupational Safety Health.

“The most important thing is that these professionals make it home safely at the end of each day,” said Donna Richter, SIBA chief executive officer. “This event raises awareness of the importance of safety in the workplace and on construction jobsites.”

Students from the SIUE School of Engineering’s Constructor’s Club assisted in the day’s events, and were invited to participate in the educational seminars and industry presentations.

“Volunteering for this event has offered our club members a unique opportunity to network with industry professionals from contractors to subcontractors, project managers and maintenance personnel,” said Highland native Cody Kruse, senior construction management major and president of the SIUE Constructor’s Club. “It’s great to have these professionals right here on campus.”

“We’re able to make connections, learn industry best practices and gain an incredible amount of safety knowledge,” added senior Drew Westerhold, of Edwardsville. “We appreciate the support we have received from SIBA.”
Both Kruse and Westerhold have full-time positions secured following their anticipated May 2018 graduation. They emphasize the value of applied learning experiences and community outreach activities in preparing them for their futures in construction.

Sponsors included SIBA, SICAP, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, IMEC, Council of Owners and Construction Associates and AASC/TekSolv.

The purpose of the Southern Illinois Builders Association is to advance the construction industry through strengthening our members by enabling them to do collectively what they cannot accomplish on their own. A complete list of SafetyCon sponsors and vendors can be found at

PHOTO: SIUE senior construction management majors and members of the School of Engineering’s Constructor’s Club Drew Westerhold, left, and Cody Kruse check out safety equipment during the SIOSH/SafetyCon event held at SIUE.

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