An unwavering emphasis on safety by Eastman (NYSE:EMN) will help transform the curriculum of undergraduate chemical engineering students around the globe, through a collaboration with the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) and its Center for Chemical Process Safety (CCPS).
Eastman’s support of AIChE’s Undergraduate Process Safety Learning Initiative reinforces its established partnership with AIChE. The initiative, which is being led by CCPS, seeks to ensure that all chemical engineering graduates possess a working knowledge of process safety principles — an area of instruction currently underdeveloped in most university undergraduate chemical engineering curricula.
The Undergraduate Process Safety Learning Initiative is a major global effort and a core priority of the AIChE Foundation’s “Doing a World of Good” campaign, which focuses on projects that bring chemical engineering expertise to bear for the good of society.
In announcing the news, AIChE executive director June Wispelwey thanked Eastman for its generosity and early leadership commitment to the process safety initiative. “Eastman, with its strong, historical commitment to the safe and responsible practice of engineering, is a natural partner in this effort,” said Wispelwey, who added, “Eastman’s distinguished, global achievements in environmental, health, safety, and security performance, along with the company’s recognized corporate culture of safety, are evidence of the company’s dedication to process safety.”
Wispelwey also acknowledged Eastman — a large employer of chemical engineers — for its long-standing representation among AIChE’s and CCPS’s leadership and programming activities, including Eastman’s role as a founding corporate member of CCPS.
In reflecting on the partnership with AIChE, Mark Cox, senior vice president and chief manufacturing, supply chain and engineering officer for Eastman, said “At Eastman, safety is a core value. We focus on the safety of our people, processes, and products, not because we want to reach certain targets or goals, but because we care about the safety and wellbeing of our employees and the people that we touch through our products.” He added, “We are committed to continual assessment and improvement of our processes, and that involves educating our future workforce. We are pleased to be working with AIChE to advance the Undergraduate Process Safety Learning Initiative, and I look forward to the great outcomes of this collaboration.”
In explaining the origins of the Undergraduate Process Safety Learning Initiative, AIChE’s Wispelwey noted that, despite the progress companies and engineers have made in process safety, corporate leaders and engineers say that they need young engineers who are better trained in process safety when they enter the workforce. Additionally, the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology recently enacted standards that require process safety to be a part of the chemical engineering curriculum. Universities, however, have not yet found a way to develop a standardized curriculum to fulfill the new requirement. “That needed training is why CCPS, its industry member companies, and AIChE created this initiative and made it part of our ‘Doing a World of Good’ campaign,” Wispelwey concluded.
AIChE is a professional society of more than 53,000 chemical engineers in 110 countries. Its members work in corporations, universities and government using their knowledge of chemical processes to develop safe and useful products for the benefit of society. Through its varied programs, AIChE continues to be a focal point for information exchange on the frontiers of chemical engineering research in such areas as energy, sustainability, biological and environmental engineering, nanotechnology and chemical plant safety and security. More information about AIChE is available at www.aiche.org.
CCPS is a not-for-profit corporate membership organization within AIChE that identifies and addresses process safety needs in the chemical, pharmaceutical and petroleum industries. CCPS brings together manufacturers, government agencies, consultants, academics and insurers to lead the way in improving process safety. Members, working in project subcommittees, define and develop useful, time-tested guidelines that have practical applications that run the gamut from human factors to qualitative and quantitative risk analysis to security vulnerability to inherently safety design. With more than 100 publications, CCPS is at the forefront of efforts to improve process safety performance. More information about CCPS is available at www.aiche.org/ccps.
Eastman operates sites and offices around the world and produces a broad range of products found in items people use every day. With a portfolio of specialty businesses, Eastman works with customers to deliver innovative products and solutions while maintaining a commitment to safety and sustainability. Its market-driven approaches take advantage of world-class technology platforms and leading positions in attractive end-markets such as transportation, building and construction and consumables. Eastman focuses on creating consistent, superior value for all stakeholders. As a globally diverse company, Eastman serves customers in approximately 100 countries and had 2015 revenues of approximately $9.6 billion. The company is headquartered in Kingsport, Tennessee, USA and employs approximately 15,000 people around the world. For more information, visit www.eastman.com.