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American Society of Safety Engineers Foundation, Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety Announce 2007 Recipients Summer Fellowship Program

Posted in on Wed, May 23, 2007

Des Plaines, IL (May 23, 2007) — Officials from the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) Foundation and the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety announced today that Bethany S. Taylor of the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, MO, and Joshua D. Hoffman of the University of Iowa in Iowa City, IA, are the recipients of the 2007 Liberty Mutual Safety Research Fellowship Program.
The Fellowship Program encourages research activity in the field of safety, expands and stimulates understanding of safety and lays the groundwork for graduate students and faculty members to pursue safety/health applied research projects of their choice. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and possess a Ph.D degree or be working towards a masters or Ph.D. Preference is given to applicants holding appointments or enrolled in a department with an ABET accredited safety program.
The Fellows will spend four to six weeks during the summer at the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety in Hopkinton, MA. Fellows receive a stipend from the ASSE Foundation covering transportation and room and board. Upon completion of the summer program, Fellows are responsible for writing either an 800 word article for the ASSE Foundation Advocate publication explaining the results of the research or an article for the ASSE Professional Safety magazine on the results of the safety research project and, if appropriate, an outline for a grant proposal for continuing the research

Taylor is in her final year of graduate study in the Clinical Doctorate Program in Occupational Therapy at Washington University in St. Louis. Her research includes workplace injury prevention and implementation of work modifications post-injury to minimize work disability. One of her career goals is to research, teach and consult with industrial organizations to identify and eliminate potential modifiable injury-related risk factors. Through the Fellowship, Taylor hopes to gain valuable experience and understanding of applied safety research at organization-wide and industry-wide levels.

The second Fellow, Hoffman is working towards a Ph.D in Industrial Engineering at the University of Iowa. Hoffman is currently the research assistant in the Cognitive Systems Laboratory at the University of Iowa. During his time as the research assistant, Hoffman has developed a model of driver interaction with in-vehicle information systems to support design of adaptive driver interfaces and evaluate in-vehicle systems. He is also an ergonomist in training with Worksafe Iowa at the University of Iowa. His goal is to replicate and extend a previous study he conducted in a fixed-base driving simulator at the University of Iowa on the Liberty Mutual test track using their instrumented vehicle. Through the fellowship, Hoffman expects to merge the results from the above with the simulator study to gain a more complete picture of the situations in which distracting drivers with text-based messages leads to decrements in driving performances and an increase in time spent looking away from the roadway.

The Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety in Hopkinton, MA, conducts original investigations into job-related accidents, injuries and disability and publishes the results in peer-reviewed, scientific journals. The Research Institute is part of Boston-based Liberty Mutual Group (LMG), a diversified global insurer and sixth largest property and casualty insurer in the U.S. based on 2005 direct written premium. LMG ( employs over 39,000 people in more than 900 offices throughout the world.

The ASSE Foundation, established by and in partnership with the American Society of Safety Engineers, generates funding and provides resources for scholarship, applied research, academic accreditation, and related academic initiatives in order to advance the safety, health, and environmental profession. For more information on the Foundation and its programs visit

Founded in 1911, the Des Plaines, IL-based ASSE is the largest and oldest professional safety organization and is committed to protecting people, property and the environment. Its more than 30,000 occupational safety, health and environmental professional members manage, supervise, research and consult on safety, health, transportation and environmental issues in all industries, government, labor and education. For more information check ASSE’s website at

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