Columbia Southern University Graduates and Student Among 2015 Rising Stars of Safety


Four Columbia Southern University (CSU) graduates and one student are among the National Safety Council’s 2015 Rising Stars of Safety. In fact, CSU had the largest number of students/graduates in the listing of 40 safety professionals from around the globe.

“Being named one of the National Safety Council’s 40 rising stars of safety this year is an incredible honor,” said Nathan Benson, a CSU student seeking a bachelor’s degree in OSH. The award recognizes the efforts of the winners to promote continuous safety improvements in their companies and organizations.

“Being selected from more than 115 nominations provides encouragement to continue working and learning to further our occupation,” said Benson of Savannah, Ga.

He attributes his education with CSU as “one of the main drivers of the success my career has experienced. Everyone I worked with at CSU was professional and showed a sincere desire to see me succeed.”

CSU graduate David Hunyar of St. Louis, Mo., echoed Benson’s excitement about the recognition. “Being part of the National Safety Council’s Rising Stars of Safety Class of 2015 is certainly the high point of my career. It’s one of the highest honors a safety professional can achieve,” he said.

“CSU has been instrumental to my career because I’ve been able to gain knowledge as I’m working, and can use what I learn that day! If I had to sit through four years of classes and then try to use what I had learned, I wouldn’t have been nearly as successful as I am,” Hunyar added.

Dan Corcoran, a program director with the CSU College of Safety and Emergency Services, said, “It’s great to see our students and alumni being recognized for their contributions in the field of occupational safety and health.”

Corcoran added that a key reason five of the stars are from CSU is because “CSU is uniquely positioned to provide quality education to working adults in the field of safety and health. Since our programs are offered in an online format, CSU students are not limited by proximity to a university.”

Houstonian Cory Worden, who also graduated from CSU, was humbled by the Rising Stars honor. “My education with CSU has been very beneficial in my career. Not only has my master’s degree in occupational safety and health been a benchmark in my education and professional opportunities, but everything I studied is used in a practical manner.”

CSU offers online certificate and associate, bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in various fields such as human resource management, occupational safety and health, fire administration, criminal justice and business administration.

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