Chad Champy, a tank farm operator, conducts his practice session to employ the skills covered in a course he will teach as part of Savannah River Mission Completion’s worker-to-trainer program. The liquid waste contractor launched the program this year to provide critical knowledge transfer among the workforce.
AIKEN, S.C. (November 29, 2023) – The Savannah River Site’s (SRS) liquid waste contractor has implemented a program for workers to train new hires through a peer-to-peer learning opportunity.
Employees with Savannah River Mission Completion (SRMC) have the opportunity to become temporary classroom instructors through SRMC’s new worker-to-trainer program to qualify fellow teammates. The program was created to identify, train and temporarily reassign internal employees to provide critical knowledge transfer. The inaugural group of worker-to-trainer participants began co-teaching courses in September.
Before teaching their first course, the program participants receive training on best teaching practices from a full-time SRMC instructional professional, helping them gain confidence and become comfortable with leading in a classroom setting. Examples of courses taught by the worker-to-trainer program participants include instruction on water, ventilation and electrical distribution; cold chemical systems; response procedures; and electronic rounds.
The program allows avenues for selected participants to provide in-depth knowledge that is often only obtained from time in the job, according to Charles Lampley, SRMC Training, Emergency Management and Conduct of Operations manager.
“Savannah River Mission Completion’s worker-to-trainer program brings a real peer-to-peer learning experience and expertise to the classroom, closing knowledge gaps and increasing worker proficiency,” Lampley said. “Feedback from program participants has been positive. They are enjoying the opportunity for personal and professional development gained by teaching other adult learners, while at the same time earning extra compensation for their temporary, increased work scope outside of normal job responsibilities.”
Jim Folk, DOE-Savannah River assistant manager for waste disposition, commends SRMC for leveraging the significant institutional knowledge that exists within the liquid waste workforce.
“The SRS liquid waste facilities and systems are highly complex with unique features and challenges,” Folk said. “With their firsthand operating experience, liquid waste employees can provide great insight to new hires when teaching the systems or maintenance activities. It makes the work being done to advance EM’s liquid waste mission at Savannah River more personal.”