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Laboratory Usage Policy
Wesselkamper Science Center
(808) 735-4834

School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics Laboratory Safety Policies Introduction

The following guidelines are established to provide instructions in maintaining safety for students, staff, and faculty while using any of the science laboratories at Chaminade University. The School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (SNSM), along with the University Environmental Safety Office, are responsible for enforcing the regulations set forth below.

Queries should be addressed to:

Dean of Natural Sciences and Mathematics: (808) 735-4834

General Guidelines

All faculty, staff, and students must know and practice the safety guidelines at all times while using the science laboratories at Chaminade University. Failure to adhere to general guidelines will result in disciplinary action including, but not exclusive to, fines, removal from the laboratory, and academic sanctions.

Students should be knowledgeable of the care, handling, and proper use of equipment prior to using it in the laboratory.

Students are requested to report pregnancies, physical handicaps, recent injuries, illnesses, surgeries, or communicable diseases to their instructors as soon as possible so that necessary precautions may be taken. A medical clearance from a physician is required before a student with physical injuries, illness, surgery, pregnancy, or who has a reported communicable disease will be allowed to participate in a laboratory setting.

It is the right of the instructor to determine whether a student in any of the situations above is capable of safely performing the necessary tasks in a laboratory.

Working alone in the lab can be unsafe and should be avoided whenever possible. Undergraduate students are not permitted to work alone with hazardous materials (chemical or biological) or equipment. When this cannot be avoided,

someone else with required safety training (Principal Investigator, Lab Assistant, Lab Manager) must be in the lab or adjacent to the lab and be able to check on their safety.

Access to the doorway in the labs will be evident at all times. Furniture will not be placed to obstruct the exits. All doors and cabinets shall remain closed when not in actual use.

Children or unauthorized personnel may visit laboratories only with advance permission of the Dean of NSM. Injury to unauthorized personnel in the lab will not be considered the responsibility of Chaminade University or its employees.

Students should report any misconduct occurring in the laboratories and may be held responsible if misconduct is not reported.

Physical Safety

There shall be no eating, drinking, smoking, vaping or chewing gum in the labs at any time under any circumstances. Food and drink must not be visible at any time while in a lab.

There shall be no application of makeup while in the laboratory at any time.

Cellphones are not to be used in laboratories while hazardous chemicals or materials are present, as they are both a distraction to general safety and can become contaminated with hazardous materials. Cellphones may be used when instructors authorize their use for pedagogical reasons or in-class activities. They may not be used to make or receive personal calls or messages during a class as a matter of safety and courtesy.

Closed-toed shoes are required to be worn prior to entering any Chaminade University laboratory, regardless of the duration or content of the class/use.

Proper personal protective equipment (PPE) must be worn before entering a laboratory.

Gloves are to be worn by students and faculty during any potential contact with hazardous materials. Gloves are utilized for safety and practice for application in a professional setting. Gloves for student use will be provided by the university at no additional cost.

Remember that if you are wearing gloves, there is a reason for it, and it is not permissible to go outside of the lab with them on. Likewise, wearing gloves during an experiment and then continuing to wear them while using a phone or eating or drinking is a direct safety violation and a health hazard. If you need to leave, please discard your gloves before exiting the lab and then reapply upon reentering.

Lab coats worn in lab are not to be worn outside of the laboratories under any circumstances unless a specific experiment requires it, which will be designated by your instructor. This is both for your safety and the safety of others on campus.

Failure to adhere to these policies will result in student conduct action, including but not limited to monetary fines, immediate removal from the laboratory until the violation is amended, and/or academic sanctions. Citations will be given for each violation regardless of the ability to amend the situation. Multiple citations will include escalated and multiple sanctions.


If you have a lecture scheduled in a laboratory, you must wear closed-toed shoes, and clothes appropriately covering your body. Even though there is not actual lab work going on, the previous classes and activities pose potential threats to your safety and health if proper PPE is not worn.


If you have a lab class, you must wear closed-toed shoes, appropriate attire covering your body, and a lab coat. Safety glasses and gloves must be worn when instructed.

Schedule of Fines

First Violation: $25

Second Violation: $25 and mandatory meeting with NSM Dean Third Violation: $100 and withdrawal from class

Fines will be assessed to the student’s account and unpaid fines may result in delay of registration, graduation, and processing of transcripts.

Students may appeal the fine in writing to the Dean of Natural Sciences and Mathematics within 15 days of receipt of the citation. The Dean of Natural Sciences and Mathematics will review the appeal and provide a written decision within 30 days of receipt of the appeal. All correspondence will take place between the administration and students via email using only the student's Chaminade University email account. In case of appeals, after the Dean of Natural Sciences and Mathematics has been approached, final appeals will be evaluated and ruled upon by the Vice President for Administration & General Counsel. Final appeals must be made within 30 days of receipt of a decision by the Dean of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.

Reporting of an Injury/Incident

Any injury/incident occurring in the laboratories must be reported to the faculty, Lab Manager (if appropriate), Campus Security, and Department Head immediately.

An incident report (located in each laboratory) must be filled out for the injury. The report must be signed by the faculty member and the student involved as soon as possible after the incident.

A Chaminade Campus Incident Reporting Form is available online and is intended to convey information needed to track the University’s response to campus incidents being reported, as well as to assess the danger the incident represents to the community at large.

The faculty/staff/student will be assisted to the appropriate facility, or personal physician depending upon the nature of the injury. Campus Security may be called to assist in facilitating a 911 response depending on the severity of the injury. When in doubt, always call 911 first.