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Student Intern Improves Safety at Cherriots

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Corban student creates tools to assess safety awareness

Corban University student, Floridelia Murillo, completed an internship this summer with Cherriots. The internship was funded by a matching grant to the transit district from the Special District Association of Oregon (SDAO).

Floridelia, who is a junior at Corban, did solid work for Cherriots. Collaborating with Michiel Majors, the Safety and Loss Control Specialist for the District, she helped expedite a hazard analysis project Michiel was working on.

“During these seven weeks, I learned a lot about safety and the many requirements and protocols that have to be followed for a transit district to run smoothly,” said Floridelia. “I am grateful I had the opportunity to spend my summer as an intern for Cherriots and that I was able to meet so many of these amazing employees.”

She worked with transit operators (drivers), maintenance (mechanics), and administrative staff. She created tools to assess and increase safety awareness, including a staff survey for which she placed a kiosk in each District building so that employees would have the opportunity to complete a job hazard analysis for their position.

In addition, Floridelia assisted Michiel and the Cherriots Safety Committee in creating monthly Safety Campaigns to increase awareness among employees. For each calendar month, she assigned a safety theme with corresponding safety tips. For example, November’s theme is Emergency Preparedness and the tips are how to create emergency kits for a home and a personal vehicle. These tips are shared before each meeting as a safety moment and are intended to help increase safety awareness throughout the organization.

As with a lot of people who experience Cherriots behind the scenes for the first time, she found the work interesting and fun. Floridelia said she had a great work experience, met many people in all areas of the district, and learned a lot about transit and safety. One of the District’s values is safety and through her contributions she was living the Cherriots mission. 

“I couldn't be any more thankful to Michiel for teaching me and helping me while I was here,” said Floridelia. “It was a wonderful experience and I am glad I could be part of it.”

The SDAO Internship Grant Program is available to SDAO members to assist in meeting or improving loss control and best practices, ultimately benefiting both the District and the intern. 

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