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Occupational Health & Safety Specialists

Helping Others Get Back to Everyday Life

Occupational health and safety specialists analyze many types of work environments and work procedures. Specialists inspect workplaces for adherence to regulations on safety, health, and the environment. They also design programs to prevent disease or injury to workers and damage to the environment. A few of their duties include:

  • Identify hazards in the workplace
  • Collect samples of potentially toxic materials for analysis
  • Inspect and evaluate workplace environments, equipment, and practices for compliance with corporate and government health and safety standards and regulations
  • Design and implement workplace processes and procedures that help protect workers from potentially hazardous work conditions
  • Investigate accidents and incidents to identify their causes and to determine how they might be prevented in the future
  • Conduct training on a variety of topics such as emergency preparedness


By 2028, the field of Occupational Health and Safety Specialist is expected to grow by 18 percent with an annual job opening of 370 in the Gulf Coast Region.

18% Growth

Growth 84 Retirements 117 Transfers 169

A mid-range salary for an Occupational Health & Safety Specialist is around $75,000 per year with the potential to earn $100,000 per year

Entry $55,470 Median $76,628 Experienced $99,540

While most Occupational Health & Safety work in Oil & Gas, opportunities are also available in Consulting and Construction.

Top 5 Industries for Occupational Health and Safety Specialists

Start Early and Be Prepared!

High School Endorsement: Public Service | STEM

Students should strive for the highest GPA possible in high school and undergrad to provide them with the edge needed for acceptance into graduate schools where seating is limited and many students are turned away. 

High school students interested in a career as an occupational health and safety specialist should take courses in biology, physics, chemistry, geometry, algebra, English, psychology, and health occupations/medical professions education as well as other electives under the relevant endorsement tracks.

Do you fit the mold?

These skills, interests, and knowledge areas are recommended for a career as an LVN. The following data describes the relative importance of each knowledge/skill area from the opinion of those in the industry.

Top 10 Relevant Knowledge Areas Relevant Importance Levels
Law and Government
Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
Public Safety and Security
Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
Education and Training
Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Customer and Personal Service
Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Engineering and Technology
Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.

  *Source: Texas Career Check.

Pathway to becoming an Occupational Therapist

Occupational health and safety specialists typically need a bachelor's degree in occupational health and safety or in a related scientific or technical field. Occupational health and safety technicians typically enter the occupation through one of two paths: on-the-job training or postsecondary education, such as an associate's degree or certificate.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although certification is voluntary, many employers encourage it. Certification is available through several organizations, depending on the field in which the specialists work. Specialists must have graduated from an accredited educational program and have work experience to be eligible to take most certification exams. To keep their certification, specialists usually are required to complete periodic continuing education.

Occupational safety and health specialists and technicians can earn professional certifications including the following:

  • The Board of Certified Safety Professionals offers the following certifications:
    • Certified Safety Professional (CSP) certification
    • Associate Safety Professional (ASP)
    • Occupational Health and Safety Technologist (OHST)
    • Construction Health and Safety Technician (CHST)
  • The American Board of Industrial Hygiene awards a certification known as a Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH)


Where to find employment in the Gulf Coast Region?    Major Employers

If you have questions about our Industry/Occupation Profiles or are an organization in the Gulf Coast Region, please contact