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Nationwide professor boosts farm safety

Nationwide professor boosts farm safety

By Blake Jackson

Florence Becot has been appointed the Nationwide Insurance Early Career Professor at Penn State, tasked with advancing research, education, and outreach in agricultural safety and health.

Her focus is on supporting farm families' well-being and economic sustainability through the adoption of safety practices.

She investigates factors influencing farmers' safety practices and the intersection of social, economic, and policy factors affecting farm resilience.

Becot's research spans various areas including access to healthcare, mental health support for farmers, and the safety implications of automation in dairy farming.

Leveraging her interdisciplinary background, she leads the Agricultural Safety and Health Program at Penn State, which aims to identify and mitigate safety hazards through engineering and educational approaches.

Her appointment strengthens Penn State's commitment to agricultural safety and health outreach, according to Suat Irmak, head of agricultural and biological engineering.

Becot's work not only contributes to traditional safety programs but also examines underappreciated factors such as childcare and healthcare access in shaping farm safety practices.

Becot's extensive experience includes over a decade in research roles at institutions like the National Farm Medicine Center and the University of Vermont Center for Rural Studies. She holds a doctoral degree in environment and natural resources, with a specialization in rural sociology.

Nationwide Insurance established the professorship in 2014 with a generous gift, providing resources to expand research, teaching, and outreach efforts in agricultural safety.

Becot's appointment marks a significant step in advancing farm safety and health initiatives, ensuring the well-being of farm families across state and national boundaries.

In her outreach efforts, Becot has presented her work to various audiences, including farmers, farm organizations, and policymakers. Her contributions extend beyond academia, impacting real-world policies and practices in agricultural safety and health.

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Categories: Pennsylvania, Rural Lifestyle, Farm Safety

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