Ensuring that organizations comply with regulations and their employees are in a safe working environment are among the responsibilities of Environmental Health and Safety Managers like Garrett Stricker.
Stricker ensures that the company remains compliant with ever-changing regulations in his role as Global Environmental Health & Safety Manager for Detroit-based Dayco Products, a global auto parts supplier. After studying at his alma mater, Michigan State University, Stricker has mastered change management and is applying it in his current role with the company.
The MSU alumnus, who received a bachelor’s degree in human biology, found the Leadership Effectiveness and Strategic Change Leadership certificate courses gave him an understanding of how change is addressed in different parts of the world.
Stricker discussed how MSU’s certificate program has helped him in his work at Dayco, what it means to be a Spartan and how he has been able to apply his change management knowledge.
Q. Tell us a little bit about your background – personally and professionally.
I am a Certified Safety Professional (CSP) and have been working in roles of increasing responsibility, until today where I oversee the entire EH&S (environmental health and safety) program for Dayco. I have spoken at many professional conferences and professional development events for EH&S professionals. I was born and raised in Metro Detroit, and attended MSU for undergrad, getting my BS in Human Biology.
Q. What was most beneficial about participating in an online environment?
For my job I travel quite a bit, often internationally, so it was nice to be able to work on my courses from anywhere in the world. I also have three children under the age of 5, so it was important for me to be home with them as opposed to in a classroom.
Q. How have you experienced “change” in your professional career?
My career has moved from singular problem solving to becoming strategic on a global scale.
Q. What learning(s) from Leadership Effectiveness and Strategic Change Leadership prepared you to handle or initiate that change?
I had to understand what makes a good leader. I didn’t want to be just another manager, I wanted to be respected and viewed as a leader. The courses allowed me to understand what leadership is, tools to be successful, and how to lead change within my company. Taking on a global role involves understanding many facets of leadership and how leaders are viewed around the world. By understanding these concepts I was able to efficiently move my projects along and find success across the globe.
Q. What would you tell other students thinking about enrolling in a certificate program?
Do it! The courses all have great value and will make you a better professional.
Q. Leveraging both your MSU campus and online experiences, how do you describe what it means to be a Spartan?
A Spartan is someone that always advances, and brings their community with them. The Spartan community is more than people that went to the same school, it is a group of people with that want to better themselves and those around them.
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