A good way to prepare high school and college students for the realities of working life is to discuss safety in the workplace. It helps to let students write about many different types of workplaces, depending on the career or job they plan to pursue. This lets them learn more about their chosen profession, including the risks associated with it. In addition, it assists their classmates in determining whether or not to follow a particular line of work, based on the possible dangers involved.

Hazardous Waste

Since many students may enter careers in industrial settings, it helps if they write essays about safety issues in this area. One of the biggest concerns for personal safety in industrial workplaces is the handling and disposal of hazardous waste. Ask your students to write about what they would do if they came into contact with a potentially hazardous substance. In their essay, let them discuss who to notify if this occurred, and how to prevent possible harm to the public.

Slip and Fall Safety

Many workplace accidents are simple slip and fall situations that could easily have been prevented. Dangers in this area can occur in almost any workplace, from chic offices to noisy power plants. Ask your students to write about the facts and figures regarding some of these dangers. They can collect facts on how many of such accidents occur per year, what the outcome is in terms of medical cost and the productivity lost due to the incident.

Personal Safety

Sometimes, safety issues in the workplace stem from the actions of other people, and not the physical aspects of the job. Have your students write about sexual harassment and working in crime-ridden neighborhoods. These are two situations in which dangers in the workplace may come at the hands of employees (including supervisors), or other individuals. Ask students what they would do in these situations to maintain their personal safety and that of other workers. For instance, they might agree to see that policies are in place to prevent sexual harassment, or walk together to their cars each night to avoid muggings.

Environmental Safety

The importance of environmental safety has definitely gone up in recent years, even when it comes to workplace dangers. Ask your students to write about various ways that workplaces contribute towards environmental pollution, and things they can do to reduce their carbon footprint, as well as other negative effects on a global scale. This can be as simple as increasing recycling efforts, or as involved as determining how to utilize alternative energy sources on the job.