our everyday life

Public Health Inspector Certification

by Alice Stuart

Public health inspectors work to promote safety and enforce environmental and health requirements in restaurants, schools, workplaces and care facilities. Several kinds of specialized certifications are available for public health inspectors, corresponding to the specific types of jobs that the inspectors hold. Public health inspectors choose which certification to pursue based on their specific job responsibilities.

American Board of Industrial Hygeine Certification

The American Board of Industrial Hygiene provides certification for public health workers. Municipal health workers can earn this certification. To apply for the exam, you must hold a bachelor's degree in science or engineering or a degree with 30 credit hours in science, math, engineering or technology. You must have completed industrial health coursework, submitted references, have worked with two of the four major occupational health stressors -- chemical, physical, biological or ergonomic.

Food Safety Certification

The National Environmental Health Association awards several public safety certifications, including the Certified in Comprehensive Food Safety Certification, or CCFS. This certification provides the ability to work in food safety and inspections services at all stages of the food production process. Eligibility requirements involve a combination of education and experience if you have a four-year degree or an associate's degree. No degree is required if you have sufficient work experience.

Certified Environmental Health Technician

The Certified Environmental Health Technician certification from NEHA is an entry-level environmental safety certification, and requires either an associate's degree in an environmental health subject or graduation from a military technical school. You can also substitute the associate's degree or the military technical education with two or more years of work experience in the environmental health industry and a high school diploma or its equivalent.

Certified Professional of Food Safety

The NEHA Certified Professional of Food Safety certification is for food safety professionals in both the public and private sectors.You are eligible without work experience if you have a four-year degree in food science or environmental health, or with varying amounts of work experience if you have less specialized education.

Registered Environmental Health Specialist/Registered Sanitarian

The Registered Environmental Health Specialist/Registered Sanitarian designation from NEHA is the basic certification for all general environmental safety job options. You're eligible for this certification without work experience if you hold a bachelor's, master's or PhD in environmental science. You are eligible with two years of work experience if you have any bachelor's degree that includes 30 semester hours of basic science and algebra.

Registered Hazardous Substances Professional

The Registered Hazardous Substances Professional certificate from NEHA is available for those who specialize in hazardous materials safety. The education and experience requirements involve as much as a graduate degree in environmental science and as little as any bachelor's degree, with continuing education and work experience at varying levels for a solid background of knowledge in hazardous materials handling.

Registered Hazardous Substances Specialist

NEHA's Registered Hazardous Substances Specialist certificate is the entry-level certificate for those who work with hazardous substances. You must have completed a two-year program in hazardous materials or hazardous waste management to take the exam. You are also eligible with a high school diploma or its equivalent with two years of relevant work experience.

State Certifications

Many states have their own certification programs, with their own requirements and fees. For example, in Kentucky you can become a registered sanitarian if you have a four-year degree with 24 semester hours of coursework in environmental health, biological science or physical science, and you pass the certification exam.

Photo Credits

  • Image Source/Digital Vision/Getty Images