NASA Johnson Space Center and The University of Texas Arlington's Division for Enterprise Development are partnering to develop best practices for enhancing environmental, health and safety training in support of current and future missions and initiatives.
UT Arlington will gain insight into training offered at a Voluntary Protection Programs certified site, while JSC hopes to better understand industry-focused training as the agency prepares for increased partnerships with commercial companies in the future.
William 'Bill' McArthur, Jr., director of Safety and Mission Assurance at JSC, and John Hall, UT Arlington vice president for Administration and Campus Operations, signed a Space Act Agreement in a ceremony at Space Center Houston May 23. Afterward, a technical interchange meeting was held to begin development of a framework to audit environmental, health and safety classes and to determine leading practices.
Ultimately, the benchmarking activities will enhance training quality and knowledge sharing of environmental, health and safety provided to JSC's various constituencies. Elmer 'Bubba' Johnson, JSC's Program Assessment Team lead, and Teresea Madden-Thompson, UTArlington associate vice president, will coordinate technical activities.
'With more than 20 years of experience training NASA personnel, the NASA Safety Training Center provides training using standards unique and unobtainable from any other sources,' McArthur said.
'The agency's current focus on partnering with commercial companies to achieve its mission requires evaluating new approaches to our training methods,' McArthur added. 'This agreement creates an opportunity for NASA to benchmark with UT Arlington to identify best practices and obtain feedback to ensure that we offer the best training to our personnel.'
Hall said the agreement creates an opportunity for the University to help shape training opportunities in the aerospace industry and its reach in the professional development sector.
'We are proud of this new partnership with NASA Johnson Space Center, and we look forward to sharing our expertise in professional education and training with an agency that sets the standard for innovation,' Hall said.
Madden said the agreement will position UT Arlington's Division for Enterprise Development for new opportunities with governmental agencies.
'We look forward to learning from NASA's expertise as well,' Madden-Thompson said. 'We will build on this expertise to create educational and training programs that will benefit the Division of Enterprise Development's other clients and support NASA's commitment to environmental, health and safety.'
The NASA Safety Training Center (NSTC) at JSC was established in May 1991 by the NASA Headquarters Office of Safety and Mission Assurance to provide up-to-date, high-quality, NASA-specific safety training on location to NASA centers, or simultaneously to multiple centers through video teleconferencing in the pursuit of the ultimate goal of safe operations for NASA. The NSTC provides safety, as well as, mission success and mission unique training that enable agency personnel to meet uniform engineering and technical requirements for processes, procedures, practices and methods that have been endorsed as a standard for NASA programs and projects.
The UT Arlington Division for Enterprise Development provides professional development, technical assistance and training to public and private organizations in Texas and the nation. The division consists of several units that serve environmental, health and safety training and education needs across the public and private sectors. They include the U.S. Department of Labor federally approved Region VI OSHA Education Center, the Center for Environmental Excellence, Environmental Training Institute and the Public Works Training Institute. UTA is a research institution of more than 33,800 students and 2,200 faculty members in the heart of North Texas.
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