Professor Tyler Love awarded 2018 Safety Educator of the Year

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Tyler Love, assistant professor of elementary and middle grades STEM education in Penn State Harrisburg’s School of Behavioral Sciences and Education and director of the Capital Area Institute for Mathematics and Science (CAIMS), has received the 2018 CareerSafe Safety Educator of the Year award.

The award was presented in November 2018 at the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) conference in San Antonio, Texas. Love was one of three national finalists considered for the award.

ACTE has approximately 25,000 members and is the nation’s largest association for career and technical educators. With Love’s award, Penn State Harrisburg received $5,000 from CareerSafe to enhance safety equipment in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) labs on campus. 

The Safety Educator of the Year award was established to recognize educators who have not only dedicated their time to prepare students for the future but to also help students recognize and mitigate workplace hazards in their chosen careers. These educators instill necessary career skills in their students, while also prioritizing the importance of safety in all aspects of life.

“I approach safety as something that should be integrated into all CTE (Career and Technical Education) and STEM lessons to prepare safer, more responsible citizens,” said Love. “As a STEM educator and researcher at Penn State Harrisburg, safety is a critical part of everything that we do. Before planning any lessons, we must ask ourselves, ‘What are the safety precautions associated with this activity, and how can I make it as safe as possible?’”

Love further explained, “Getting students in the proper mindset early carries over to projects they work on at home and into their secondary education CTE and STEM programs.”

Love said the CareerSafe award is significant because it highlights the important topic of safety education, which he said is often overlooked. Love added that the award has inspired him to continue his research on safety education and provide outreach on the topic, knowing that it does make a difference.  Recently, his work was the basis for a chapter of a STEM education report published by the National Academy of Engineering.