Faculty and students in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences (EnHS) are active in a wide variety of nationally and internationally recognized multidisciplinary research, education and research centers, and training programs. 

Just some of the areas of expertise of our faculty include occupational health and safety, infectious disease, hazardous materials, occupational hygiene, exposures, toxicology, global health, air and water contaminants, health policy, cancer, foodborne illness, and health policy.

The EnHS Faculty Directory includes biographies, expertise, publications and other information for all division faculty.

Research Centers

Our division is home to many national research centers and training programs. Our faculty and students work jointly with other researchers at the University of Minnesota and throughout the world on multidisciplinary research projects. The research centers also award pilot project grants to support innovative research projects.

Learn more about the centers within our division.

Laboratory Facilities

Graduate students in Environmental Health Sciences have the opportunity to participate closely with faculty on research projects in state-of-the-art laboratory facilities, as well as in field practice settings.

The Occupational Hygiene Laboratory, shared by the occupational hygiene core faculty, occupies 2,500 sq. ft. and is equipped with the latest instrumentation for measurement of gases, vapors, particulate matter, biological aerosols, noise, radiation, and hazardous materials.

The lab consists of a large room occupied by a wind tunnel, a filter tester, and two biological safety cabinets; a smaller room with a walk-in exposure chamber and two laboratory hoods; a wet-chemistry laboratory with work benches and another lab hood; and several smaller work, storage, and office spaces.

For aerosol research and measurements, the lab has condensation particle counters for measuring nanoparticle concentrations, nephelometers for measuring aerosol mass concentrations, diffusion chargers capable of measuring surface area concentrations, instruments for measuring particle size distributions, samplers for collecting biological aerosols, and numerous gravimetric samplers and cascade impactors. To analyze filter samples, microbalances and microscopes are present.

The lab owns equipment for gas and vapor sampling, including direct reading instruments for measuring ammonia and hydrogen sulfide concentrations and concentrations of organic vapors. The lab also has typical occupational hygiene devices such as flow calibrators, sampling and vacuum pumps, Dräger pumps and tubes, noise dosimeters, velometers, manometers, pressure gauges, pitot tubes, and centrifugal fans. Equipment is available for generating different kinds of gases, vapors, and aerosols for experiments.

The Toxicology Laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art tissue culture facilities, high-speed centrifuge, rotors, microfuges, speed vac, environmental shaker, visible and UV spectrophotometer, fluorimeter, luminometer polymerase chain reaction (PCR), liquid scintillation counter, dark room, electrophoresis and electroblotting equipment for protein and nucleic acid purification, BioRad Econo System, and chromatography cabinet for doing work at four degrees Centigrade.

The Environmental Chemistry Laboratory is equipped with extraction and processing equipment for trace analysis of environmental samples. The lab includes three GC/MS, one LC/MS, a GC/ECD, and a scintillation counter.

Current laboratory research focuses on understanding the processes that govern organic toxicant behavior in the aquatic environment. Fundamental research in the laboratory is also conducted to develop and test hypotheses of chemical behavior in the “real world.”

The Environmental Chemistry Laboratory participates in a large multiagency effort that is developing a model for use in the Great Lakes that describes toxic chemical behavior. Additional projects concentrate on the relative roles of atmospheric versus nonatmospheric sources of chemicals to the Great Lakes and the state of Minnesota, to aid in the management and regulation of the ecosystem.

Funded Research Projects by Faculty

Susan Arnold Faculty Page

The Interdisciplinary Training, Education and Research Activities for Assessing and Controlling Contaminants from Emerging Technologies (InTERACCT) Program
Funding Source: NIH/NIEHS

The Interdisciplinary Training, Education and Research Activities for Assessing and Controlling Contaminants from Emerging Technologies (InTERACCT) Program will help build an occupational health and safety workforce capable of anticipating and preventing hazards from emerging technologies. Cross-cutting skills will be developed through three core courses: chemical hazard recognition, exposure assessment and cumulative risk assessment. These skills will be applied to three emerging technologies: nanotechnology (NT), additive manufacturing (AM), and novel drug delivery (NDD). The cross-cutting skills developed among participants in InTERACCT will empower them to respond appropriately to the unique characteristics of emerging technologies, and to innovations in health and safety.

Jeff Bender Faculty Page

One Health Collaborations to Combat Antimicrobial-Resistant Infections
Funding Source: Minnesota Department of Health / CDC Prime
9/3/2019 – 7/31/2023

Building State Capacity to Implement a One Health Approach to COVID-19
Funding Source: Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) / CDC prime
1/24/2022 – 3/31/2023

Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health Center (UMASH)
Funding Source: CDC/NIOSH
9/30/2016 – 9/29/2023

Dana Carroll Faculty Page

Development and Pilot Testing of a Culturally-tailored Smartphone-delivered Intervention for Commercial Smoking Cessation in American Indians
Funding Source: NIH/NCI
9/1/2021 – 8/31/2023

Laying the Foundation for Personalized Smoking Cessation Treatment in the America Indian Population
Funding Source: NIH/NIMDH
8/3/2020 – 2/28/2025

Craig W. Hedberg Faculty Page

Metrics, Outbreak Evaluation, Scholarships, and Integrated Food Safety Centers of Excellence (CoE) Activities
Funding Source: Minnesota Department of Health / CDC prime
9/30/2019 – 7/31/2023

Minnesota SARS-CoV-2 Serology Studies (Grocery Store II)
Funding Source: Minnesota Department of Health
6/1/2021 – 12/31/2022

Risk Assessment Model to Assess the impact on Public Health of Raw Pork Based on the Contamination Level and Presence of Highly virulent or multi drug resistan strains
Funding Source: Foundation for Meat and Poultry Research and Education
1/1/2022 – 12/31/2022

George Maldonado Faculty Page

Global Epidemiology Journal
Funding Source: Elsevier, Inc
1/1/2019 – 12/31/2024

Jonathan Oliver Faculty Page

Development of Paratransgenic Ticks for Disease Control
Funding Source: NIH/NIAID
12/22/2017 – 11/30/2022

Tick Immune Signaling, Microbiota, and Acquisition of Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma
Funding Source: University of Maryland / NIH Prime
7/13/2018 – 6/30/2023

Peter C. Raynor Faculty Page

Midwest Emerging Tech Public Health & Safety Program (METPHAST)
Funding Source: NIH National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIH-NIEHS)
8/1/2013 – 7/31/2023
The METPHAST Program is a multi-institutional education program, led by the University of Minnesota with partners at the University of Iowa and Dakota County Technical College, that trains and educates students and working professionals regarding health and safety issues associated with emerging technologies. The program’s objective is to develop a comprehensive array of focused, web-based modules about nanotechnology health and safety that can be used by instructors to tailor education and training initiatives to serve the unique needs of different learners.

Micro-Nano Technologies Education Center (MNT-EC)
Funding Source: Pasadena City College / NSF Prime
7/1/2020 – 6/30/2025

Midwest Consortium for Hazardous Waste Worker Training
Funding Source: NIH National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIH-NIEHS)
8/1/2020 – 5/1/2023

Matt C. Simcik Faculty Page

Developing a Predictive Understanding of PFAS Bioaccumulation with Environmental Complexity: Application to the Model Benthic Invertebrate Hyalella azteca and the Common Fish Model Pimephales promelas
Funding Source: Department of Defense Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (DOD-SERDP)
8/2/2019 – 8/1/2023

In Situ PFAS Sequestration in AFFF Contaminated Groundwater
Funding Source: Department of Defense (DOD)
9/30/2020 – 9/29/2023

Demonstrating the Use of a Novel, Hybrid Polyelectrolyte/Hydrophilic Polymer for In situ PFAS Treatment Applications
Funding Source: Department of Defense (DOD) Navy
4/16/2020 – 4/17/2023

Research Center Projects

The Minnesota Technical Assistance Program (MnTAP) is an outreach program under the Division of Environmental Sciences that helps Minnesota businesses develop and implement industry-tailored solutions that prevent pollution at the source, maximize efficient use of resources, and reduce energy use and costs to improve public health and the environment.

Minnesota Technical Assistance Program
Funding Source: Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
7/1/2010 – 6/30/2022
The goal of this project is to assist Minnesota Businesses with pollution prevention and waste management information, facilitate implementation of improved practices through on-site assistance, provide referral for compliance with environmental regulations and minimize transfer of pollutants from one environment to another.

Currently funded projects under MnTAP include:

Water Conservation Intern Project
Funding Source: Metropolitan Council
5/22/2014 – 12/31/2022

Minnesota Wastewater Treatment Facility Energy Efficiency Cohort Training and Implementation Support
Funding Source: MN Department of Commerce
3/25/2021 – 1/30/2024

Protecting Minnesota Water Resources through Non-Metro Industial Convervation
Funding Source: Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR)
8/13/2021 – 6/30/2024

Pollution Prevention Best Management Practices and Implementation for MN Metal Fabrication
Funding Source: Minnesota Pollution Control Agency / EPA prime
10/20/2020 – 9/30/2023

Greater Minnesota Wastewater Nutrient Reduction Upstream Source Reduction
Funding Source: Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR)
7/1/2019 – 6/30/2022

Motivating Change to a Safer Dry Cleaning Process
Funding Source: Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
3/6/2019 – 6/30/2022

The Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health Center (UMASH) is one of eleven Centers of Excellence in Agricultural Disease and Injury Research, Education, and Prevention funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) throughout the United States. UMASH is a collaboration of five leading research and health care institutions in the Upper Midwest region. This collaboration brings together unique and complimentary expertise to address existing and emerging occupational health and safety issues in agriculture.

Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health Center (UMASH)
Funding Source: NIH National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
9/30/2011 – 9/29/2023
Principal Investigator / UMASH Director: Dr. Jeff Bender

View current and past research projects on the UMASH website at

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