Meet Kehinde: My Experience in Herzing’s Online OHS Program

When Kehinde Akande came to Canada in 2018, he knew he wanted to pursue additional education.

He already had a chemistry degree and several years of experience in environmental issues, but he was looking to get more into health and safety. After researching several OHS programs, he chose Herzing’s because it was online, flexible, and fast.

It proved to be a good decision. When he graduated in October 2022, he was offered a job as a health and safety advisor—at the same company where he did his internship!

We spoke with Kehinde recently to learn more about his experience. Here’s his story.


Q. Kehinde, can you share a bit about your background? What were you doing before you started at Herzing?

Kehinde: My first degree was in chemistry. Back in Nigeria, my background was in environmental management. I was in that field for about five years.

I have a very keen interest in issues of climate change and environmental impact assessments. Some of the things I was involved with centred around helping manufacturing industries to be compliant with environmental legislation.

I also trained workers in health and safety, which was another area of interest for me.


Q. What made you decide to take the Occupational Health and Safety program at Herzing?

Kehinde: I was always planning to go back to school. Prior to coming to Canada, I actually got an admission offer for a master’s program at the University of Waterloo. However, since the province I settled in was Manitoba, I decided to follow up with the University of Waterloo to see if their program could be done online. Unfortunately, it had to be done on site, and I didn’t want to leave my family and travel to Ontario.

My next step was to look for a program here in Manitoba that worked with my schedule and full-time employment.

I found Herzing College to be a perfect fit. The OHS program was offered online and was only 12 months long. I liked the fact that I could go directly into the diploma program, as compared to other institutions I saw that required a certificate first.


Q. What was the toughest part of the OHS program?

Kehinde: This was my first time doing an online program, which was a little tough initially. You don’t have a group of people sitting in the room with you that you can just chat with. You only see people on screen, so you don’t know who they are or what part of the world they are from. If there was an aspect of a lecture that I didn’t understand, it was a bit of a challenge to get people together to discuss it.

But over time, I was able to reach out to somebody in the group. He was in the program before me, so he kind of guided me through. And then things got easier.


Q. What was the best part of the program?

Kehinde: The best part would be the feedback from the assignments. The instructor was very thorough and made us see the bigger picture beyond our own perspectives.

The weekly forum was also great. The instructor would throw out some key health and safety related questions and then everybody got to discuss them. There were people from construction, manufacturing, and other sectors, and you got this wonderful exchange of ideas. For me, that was very, very interesting.


Q. Tell us about your internship. Where did you work and what kind of things did you do?

Kehinde: My internship was done at Brunswick Steel. The company is a steel supply company and serves as a middleman between the steel producing mills and the end user customer. They also engage in steel fabrication and have clients in the mining, manufacturing, farming, and forestry industries.

One of the first tasks I was given was to help them review and revise safe work procedures, and they had over 70 of them. That was a challenge for me. If I was going to write those, I needed to understand how the task was being done.

I had a little bit of time to interact with the employers and see how people work on the different machines. I observed what they did and asked questions. Then I went back to the existing document, looked at the health and safety regulations, and made sure the procedures were in compliance with the legislation.

It was a very interesting adventure for me. Over time, I became comfortable with the responsibilities. And it gave me room to grow in terms of my knowledge base.


Q. You graduated a few months ago. What are you doing now?

Kehinde: I’m actually working in the very same place where I did my internship. The company had an open position for the role of Health and Safety Advisor after I completed my internship. I indicated interest in the position, and I was offered a permanent full-time role, which was an opportunity for me to progress in the OHS profession.


Q. Are you using the skills you learned at Herzing? Was the training relevant to what you’re doing now?

Kehinde: Everything I learned in class at Herzing has been of use to me: incident investigations, safe work procedures, workplace inspections, lockout and tagout procedures, so many different things.

Right now I’m trying to develop an ergonomic program for the workplace. The company is also expanding and bringing in more machines, so I’ll be developing safety procedures and training the workers. There are a lot of opportunities for me to expand and grow.

Absolutely everything I learned at Herzing College has practical applications.


Q. How did you find the program overall?

Kehinde: It was a really fantastic experience for me and I am grateful to my instructor, my classmates, and the career services team for giving me the opportunity to work in a place where I could apply what I have learned in the classroom. I feel fulfilled that I did this program through Herzing, and I don’t regret it for a second.


Q. What advice would you give someone who was considering taking the OHS program at Herzing College?

Kehinde: I would tell them to be in all the classes as much as possible, because that is where the real learning is. I think there were maybe one or two times when I missed class, and of course there’s the opportunity to sit down and watch the recordings, but it’s not the same as participating in class and asking questions in real time.

If you’re certain this is what you want to do, just go on and get it done. I have already recommended this program to two other friends of mine. I told them I know you are a full-time worker, but this will work perfectly for you.



Herzing College’s online Occupational Health and Safety program takes only a year to complete and includes an eight-week internship. The program is approved by the Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals and graduates are immediately eligible for the Canadian Registered Safety Technician (CRST) certification.

Click below to get complete program details and chat live with a knowledgeable admissions advisor. We’re here to help!

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