Meet the 2021 NSC Advanced Safety Certificate Scholarship Recipients

NSC remains committed to helping safety practitioners grow.

November 18, 2021

As part of the National Safety Council Scholarship program, the Certificate Assistance Program helps support individuals on a safety career path obtain their NSC Advanced Safety Certificate® (ASC). Recipients will receive virtual training to complete the Principals of Occupational Safety and Health (POSH) training or the Advance Safety Certificate program Through the POSH training and ASC program, NSC teaches best practices to those who are transitioning into a safety career or are currently in safety roles within their organization and need additional professional development to create a more proactive process for safety and health.

This year, NSC awarded 10 safety heroes with a scholarship to complete the POSH training or ASC program. Congratulations to all! Meet a few of this year’s scholarship recipients:

Michael Parker: POSH Training

Michael J. Parker has worked in the occupational safety and health profession for 15 years. He began this career serving in the U.S. Navy as a paralegal, where he made a commitment to protect the safety of fellow servicemen and servicewomen. It was there he realized how good it felt to be an enforcer of a safe work culture. Upon his honorable discharge, he enrolled in San Diego State University, then later Columbian Southern, to pursue a degree in occupational safety and health. Over the course of his career, he obtained certifications and training that equipped him to be a very intuitive and detailed safety professional, but he knows there is more work to be done in his field. 

"To equip myself for that work, I am most grateful and honored to be chosen for this prestigious Principles of Occupational Safety and Health full scholarship," he said.

He currently resides in Houston, Texas, where he is transitioning from the nonrenewable to renewable energy sector, a career shift he welcomes. He looks forward to utilizing this scholarship to help him along this new path.

Andrew Van Slyke: ASC Program

Born in Fort Worth, Texas, Andrew “Scott” Van Slyke now resides in Galveston, Texas, and is the Recycling Division Supervisor for the City of Galveston. Andrew’s work history and education background allow him to proficiently design and implement operational structures that improve safety, quality and efficiency in rapidly shifting business demands. His management style is both progressive and democratic, and his dedication to safety, communication and leadership are second to none. Andrew also enjoys developing safety solutions and protocols that push innovative boundaries and further safety development. For 15 years, Andrew has worked closely with executive staff members and management to strategize and develop long-term plans that usher in new levels of safety, quality, productivity and success. Andrew is proficient at developing and measuring KPIs, completing 6S and lean projects, developing safety culture awareness, implementing new standard operation procedures, conducting risk assessments and JSAs to mitigate risks and recommending solutions for facility improvements.

When Andrew is not working, he enjoys spending time with his wife and son at the beach in Galveston. He also enjoys grilling with his father, recording and playing music, and throwing the football with his son. Andrew’s dedication to safety is motivated by both his late Grandfather, Earl Van Slyke, who was as an Operations Manager for Coca-Cola Bottling Company, and his son, Andrew Van Slyke Jr. He also dedicates his work path and expresses his thanks to Mr. Robbie Wright, who mentored and educated Andrew early on in basic safety, heavy equipment inspection and recycling fundamentals while employed at Westex Iron and Metal in Fort Worth.

Daniel Esquivel: POSH Training

Daniel Esquivel has worked in the safety field for almost 14 years. He is the safety manager for Mount Franklin Foods, a large confectionery and snack manufacturer, and during his time with the company has helped significantly reduce work-related injuries by more than half. 

As the leader of the safety department, Daniel has worked hard to create a positive safety culture and establish key metrics to develop programs to minimize all work-related injuries. He currently resides in his hometown of El Paso, Texas, where he lives with his wife and their newborn son. He enjoys golfing and spending time with his family. 

Jenee’ Olivier: ASC Program

Jenee’ Olivier began her 20-year career in human resources after graduating from Louisiana State University. She later received a master’s degree in business administration from Southeastern Louisiana University. While working in human resources, she found her path overlapping with the safety field on many occasions. Ten years ago she began her work at Sigma Engineers and Constructors as human resources director and safety coordinator. She was later promoted to safety director. She is also the owner of Business Boutique, which provides consulting services to organizations in the areas of safety and human resources. Jenee holds several HR and safety certifications, including Society of Human Resources Management - Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP), Professional in Human Resources (PHR) and Certified Occupational Safety Specialist (COSS). 

Jenee’ is a long-time member of the Society of Human Resources Managers and Greater Baton Rouge Society of Human Resources Managers, and currently serves as GBR SHRM workforce readiness director. She is an active member in her church parish, serving as a member of the school board for St. Thomas More, and is an active volunteer for the Bishop Ott Sweet Dreams Shelter. When not at work Jenee’ enjoys running and spending time with her kids at sporting events.

Lurri Schoenrock: ASC Program

Lurri never imagined at age 49 she would be headed back to the classroom to make life changes for herself and her family. On Aug. 23, 2013, life as she knew it changed forever. Her youngest son, Colton, was killed in a car wreck because he fell asleep at the wheel driving home one afternoon from work. He had just finished a 15.5-hour shift, but that is only the start of the story.

Colton worked as a rodbuster and usually worked 6 a.m. to 5 p.m., but on that Thursday at 10 a.m. all the rodbusters were told they would be going home at 2 p.m. but needed to report back at 10 p.m. to help the night shift pour concrete. Colton only slept a couple hours before going back into work at 10 p.m. like the rest of the crew. They were used to working days so they couldn’t sleep on such short notice. When Colton finally got off work at 1:30 p.m., he promised his mother he was going to get a few hours’ sleep before making the 3-hour drive home. What she didn’t know is that he had changed his mind and headed home. Colton had a son that was 11 days old, and he wanted to get home to him. At 3:36 p.m. on Aug. 23, 2013, Lurri's world crumbled. When her feet landed back on the ground, she made up her mind she wanted to make a difference. Even if she could help one person, it would be all worth it.

She started back to school at Columbia Southern University in 2017, where she earned her associate's of occupational safety and health, and then went on to receive her bachelor's in October 2020. Going back to school, she learned she had a love and passion for safety.

"It is in my blood and I must keep learning," she said. "Any classes I can take or extra knowledge I can gain from a mentor, I am all ears."

She recently started the master’s program at Columbia Southern.

Shane Carlberg: ASC Program

Shane Carlberg is the safety and environmental manager for Central Specialties Inc., where he specializes in the health and safety of all CSI Employees. Shane has developed his safety and leadership experience with 13 years in the Army, including two tours during Operation Iraqi Freedom; healthcare safety, security and emergency management; and eight years in law enforcement as a police officer and a sheriff’s deputy before moving into the road construction safety field. 

Shane says his military experience translates well to the road construction industry. 

“Your crew is like your second family. During the season you’re with them day in and day out. This can be used to our advantage, getting to know each other well enough to know when someone‘s day is off could be the best way to catch an incident before it happens. All the PPE and safety initiatives are beneficial, but building trust and teamwork is the key to accident prevention.”

Additional Scholarship Recipients 

Not pictured are Santosh Sedai, Genevieve Merrill, Leslie Burton and George Medina. 

The National Safety Council congratulates these 10 individuals for their commitment to saving lives and preventing injuries. For those interested in applying for a 2022 scholarship award, applications will open in April.

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