Safety Training

STUDENT & FACULTY LAB SAFETY TRAINING

Before starting research lab work in the Science Center, everyone (students & faculty) must register and attend one of the general lab safety training sessions offered by the Lab Safety & Compliance Director, Dr. Margaret Rakas. Attendance at least once during your time at Smith is the minimum requirement.

For the students…

  • If only doing course-based research you are exempt from this rule
  • If you are a Chemistry Teaching/Prep assistants you must attend the general lab safety training session every semester you are employed and before you, can start working
  • If you are doing SURF (summer) research you are required to attend an in-depth general lab safety training each summer you have a SURF (or other) award 
  • If you are doing Special Studies, Honors, or simply volunteering to do lab research during the academic year the rule applies to you. Note: If you have already attended at least one of these sessions during your time at Smith, you don’t have to attend another. Note: Before the training session, you are allowed to work on project components that do not involve chemicals, biologicals, or instrumentation of any kind. 
Fill out this General Lab Safety Training Session  Google form using your smith email to register for one of the general lab safety sessions:
Thursday September 22 at 12:15 (zoom linkopen for registration
Monday September 26 at 12:15 (zoom link) not yet open for registration
Wednesday October 12 at 
7:30 PM (zoom link) not yet open for registration
Register to get the Zoom session password!
Note: Sessions will be ‘locked’ 5 minutes after start time due to the critical safety information presented from the beginning.


Students: What you need to know about your responsibilities

Research & other types of students are also personally responsible for their own, and their fellow lab mates, safety. This means you must

  • Complete the required safety training mandated by the College and your supervisors.
  • Read and acknowledge provided training documentation
  • Follow the appropriate guidelines when dealing with hazardous materials and processes

Student research safety training requirements:

  • You must attend a general lab safety training session before you start lab work. Attendance at least once during your time at Smith is the minimum requirement. Sessions will be led by the Lab Safety and Compliance Director, Dr. M. Rakas, and announced throughout the academic year and SURF period.
  • You must attend a specific room lab safety training session before you use the space conducted by your supervisor.
  • If instructed by your supervisor because your research involves radioactive materials, lasers, recombinant DNA, blood-borne or other hazardous pathogens,  you must also attend a specific subject safety training session before starting work.

Faculty: What you need to know about your responsibilities

Principal Investigators and Laboratory Supervisors are legally responsible for

  • the safety of anyone working in their laboratory spaces.
  • the safety of their own students working anywhere else…unless responsibility has been formally transferred to another faculty/staff member

Specifically, this means ensuring all employees, visitors, and students under supervision…

  • Complete the required safety training mandated by the college
  • Be provided with documented training specific to their laboratory space
  • Follow the appropriate guidelines when dealing with hazardous materials and processes

Faculty research safety training requirements:

  • You must attend a general lab safety training session at the beginning of your employment. Consult this page or contact M. Rakas for the session schedule.
  • You must develop a laboratory safety training protocol for the users of your space.
  • If you work with radioactive materials, Class 3B or 4 lasers, recombinant DNA, blood-borne or other hazardous pathogens you must learn about administrative procedures and attend a specific subject safety training session before starting the work. Contact M.Rakas to schedule.