Culture of Care Safety Summit

People at safety symposium

Changing the Mindset

Safety is a core value and is central to how we work, study and conduct research at the University of Alberta. It is how we will build – and are building – a Culture of Care.

On January 24, 2024, the university will promote safety best practices in work and learning with the 2024 Culture of Care Safety Summit, hosted by Human Resources, Health, Safety and Environment. The one-day event will feature eight educational safety sessions related to the main event theme of “Changing the Mindset.”

Changing the Mindset means education, growth, effort and the belief that we are the ones who can and will make that happen. That is how U of A community members will continue to build a Culture of Care and a university committed to the physical, cultural and psychological safety and well-being of our campuses and workplaces.

Register for the Safety Summit

Safety Summit Program

Keynote (morning)

Changing the Safety Mindset through Transformational Leadership (Eldeen Pozniak)

The university’s strategic plan positions us as world shapers who innovate and transform human experience and understanding. To reap the rewards of this great promise we need to ensure that our people are physically, psychologically and culturally safe.

The Culture of Care is our roadmap on this journey as we strive to transform our mindset to create a consistent, growing culture where everyone owns safety and looks out for others.

Eldeen Pozniak, respected Canadian management consultant, safety leader and speaker, will share her knowledge and wisdom crafted over decades of engaging with organizations and individuals around the world. She will focus on how we think, feel and talk about safety can be leveraged to transform our actions and improve our safety culture.

Keynote (afternoon)

Becoming Safety Champions (Gord Winkel)

A Safety Champion is not a position or job description — it’s someone who owns their safety performance and that of others. But what does this mean in terms of behaviours and actions, and how can we, as safety leaders at the U of A,  encourage and enable others to make the small, incremental changes that together shift the mindset across an entire institution?

Concurrent sessions


WeCare: Psychological Safety in Action

Kathleen Danser, Consultant, Organizational Development, HRHSE
Sarah Flower, Senior Consultant, Talent Management, HRHSE


A generation ago the prevailing workplace wisdom was to keep the person separate from the professional; like that was even possible!

Thankfully we are inching our way from that perspective toward a new way of learning how to care about ourselves and our colleagues. How do we build caring relationships at work while maintaining professional boundaries? This requires a specialized skill set that honours the intersections of psychological well-being, mental health, and safety. 

This session introduces a hands-on set of tools that engages our new “Continuum of Psychological Well-being” with role-specific tip sheets so that you feel empowered to care about yourself and others effectively.

Creative Approaches to Safety and Wellness

Syed Biyabani, Senior Safety & Risk Management Analyst, Faculty of Engineering
Dr. Melanie Lewis, Chief Wellness Officer and Professor, Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry
Tracey Giroux, Peace Officer - Community Assistance  Team, UAPS


The Culture of Care Safety Action Plan reminds us that safety is a shared responsibility and challenges everyone to take on a safety champion role in their work, research or learning environment.

How can we leverage the often limited resources in our unit to ensure that safety and wellness is prioritized, and what are the rewards and challenges along the way?

Researching Safety: Innovations & Insights from U of A Researchers

Dr. Patricia Dolez, Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences
Dr. Quentin Durand-Moreau, Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry
Dr. Muhammad Zubair, Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences


The Culture of Care Safety Action Plan challenges us to make safety central to our work and learning at the U of A, but what research is already underway at the U of A to advance occupational & environmental health and safety at the university and beyond? Hear from three researchers who are tackling safety challenges, and find out how the work they are doing is “changing the mindset” towards health, safety and the environment.

It's Not My Job" and Other Myths: Safety as a Shared Responsibility

Philip Stack, Director, Health, Safety and Environment
Greg Hodgson, Occupational Hygienist, Health, Safety and Environment


Coming soon


The Young and the Reckless: Managing the safety of new workers as well as those who "just don't care"

Eldeen Pozniak, International Management Consultant - Occupational Health & Safety


At the U of A we are a training ground for new researchers and other workers. We have many long-time employees who have established many healthy habits and in some cases cling to the safety habits of the past.

The Culture of Care challenges us to broaden our mindset to safeguard the physical, psychological and cultural well-being of our people.

Join Eldeen Pozniak as she explores the challenges and opportunities that accompany "The Young and the Reckless" in a work setting and offers strategies to help ensure that everyone goes home safely each day.

Safety, Sustainably!

Behn Jang, Program Team Lead, EMSO, VP F&O - Energy & Climate Action
Dr. Greg King, Augustana - Sciences
Dr. Kseniya Revunova, HSE Safety Advisor, Health, Safety and Environment


A look at the intersection between safety & sustainability, how it comes together in different ways at the U of A, and the associated challenges and opportunities.

Crisis Management at the U of A

Adam Conway, Director of Emergency Management, VP F&O


Coming soon

Creating and Fostering a Respectful Workplace

Dr. Carrie Smith, Vice-Provost (Equity, Diversity & Inclusion)
Dr. Evelyn Hamdon, Senior Advisor, Equity & Human Rights, Provost & VP Academic


Many of us have a greater understanding of physical safety and the risks to life, limb and health associated with exposure to these hazards. Psychological and cultural safety are new concepts that have only been recognized in the Alberta Occupational Health and Safety Act since 2018.

The Culture of Care brings the three safeties together; physical, psychological and cultural, in a series of important initiatives over the next three years. It links to the Braiding the Past Present and Future: U of A’s Indigenous and the Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity (EDI) strategic plans. 

In this session, you will hear from Carrie Smith and Evelyn Hamdon from the Office of the Provost, who lead our cultural safety initiatives, about how we can leverage the activities and resources in these plans to create and foster the respectful work environment that we all desire.


This event is intended for faculty, staff and students in a safety leadership role. Capacity is limited to 200 people, so register early!

Event Materials

Stay tuned!

HSE Awards

Stay tuned!