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Andrea Cox 1Andrea Cox, a second-year student in the Master of Engineering Program, recently received the 2021 American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP) Alabama Chapter Scholarship. Cox is a student in the Advanced Safety Engineering and Management (ASEM) track.

Each year ASSP awards four outstanding individuals with $1,000 scholarships for their achievements and ambitions in the field of occupational health and safety.

“Andrea was a clear choice for my nomination,” said ASEM Director Donald Burke, Ph.D.. “Her efforts in the program have been exceptional and I look forward to hearing of her continued impact as an ASEM graduate and a change agent for the safety profession.”

With more than 25 years of experience and a multi-discipline bachelor’s degree with an emphasis on engineering, environmental and community safety, Cox has worked in many different fields and safety platforms. She has spent the past 17 years working in missile defense, aviation, and environmental and safety management.

“Starting with my undergraduate degree, I have sought opportunities to relate and bring more effective communication for a safer environment,” said Cox. “Being a safety team member and serving as an ad hoc safety committee member throughout my career has been my passion. This ASEM degree has allowed me significant outreach to my peers and enabled me to examine the corporate infrastructure for engineering safety gaps or weaknesses.  I enjoy being on the front line communicating and engaging employees with helpful safety resources.”

According to Cox, she is proud to advance the representation of minority women within the STEM and DOD-contracting fields. Garnering inspiration from her grandmother who grew up in an orphanage and became one of the first Hispanic women in her neighborhood to graduate high school in the 1940s, Cox aims to be a positive female example for her daughters.

“I want them to strive for higher education and continue the legacy of women in our family,” said Cox. “My legacy to them will be the first in our family to receive a master’s degree.”

The Master of Engineering with a concentration in ASEM is the first master’s degree in engineering with a safety emphasis offered totally online. By teaching students both the language of engineering as well as safety concepts, graduates are able to bridge the divide between design engineers and occupational safety and health professionals.