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Industrial Hygienist Greg WilliamsWhat is your position at UNC-Chapel Hill, and how long have you been associated with the University?

I am an industrial hygienist and have been with the University for 2 years.

How did you initiate your career in this field or what led you to your current position?

I received a Bachelor of Science in Public Health from Brigham Young University – Idaho. I chose public health because it was a field that combined my love of science and my passion for helping people. I started my career in occupational health and safety working in a fellowship with the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation. While there, I received experience working in workplace safety, ergonomics, and industrial hygiene. I was drawn to industrial hygiene and the work of protecting people from hazardous substances. That work led me to take a position as an Industrial Hygienist working for the North Carolina Department of Labor, where I conducted OSHA inspections around the state and enforced health and safety laws. I jumped at the chance to work as an industrial hygienist at UNC because I love the University setting and the work ensured I could continue to help protect people.

Which sectors of the University does your role impact, and in what ways does it contribute to those areas of work?

I am the asbestos and lead paint program manager. My work primarily deals with identifying asbestos-containing materials and lead paint on campus. I help to ensure these materials are properly maintained and, when construction projects occur, are removed in accordance with health and safety laws. I also conduct air monitoring when building occupants have specific chemical concerns and help test water throughout campus.

Describe what you love most about your job.

What I love most about my job is using my knowledge of love of science to help keep people safe.

What advice do you have for those interested in entering a career in your line of work?

Don’t be afraid to take an opportunity that doesn’t fit into your initial plan, because you never know where it might take you. I didn’t plan on working in occupational health and safety when I graduated from college, but it is where I ended up and I love it.