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Agronomy Day 2007

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Pesticide Safety Education Program

Since 1966, University of Illinois Extension has worked in cooperation with the Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDA) and is responsible for conducting educational training programs for the state’s private, commercial, and public pesticide applicators and operators. State and Federal laws require that anyone who applies “general use” pesticides to land that they do not own or control, or purchases or uses pesticides classified as “restricted use” must be certified by the IDA.

Illinois is unique in that no other state has a comprehensive team of interdisciplinary specialists focused on the delivery of pesticide safety education. The Pesticide Safety Education Program (PSEP) team is comprised of five Extension specialists, each with a different specialty: weed science, entomology, plant pathology, pesticide application equipment and program facilitation. The result is a well balanced approach to pesticide safety education.

In a 3 year license cycle, we train approximately 24,000 at 90 commercial clinics. More are self-trained through our study manuals and workbooks. Although our primary clientele is pesticide applicators and operators, we strive to educate all users of pesticides about related topics such as worker protection, pesticide recordkeeping, water quality, endangered species, IPM, invasive species, food safety, etc. In addition to our statewide training clinics, we reach our audience by seminars, workshops, radio, TV, the internet, and various newsletters including our own Illinois Pesticide Review.

Pest control is constantly evolving with ever changing pest problems, products, and issues. Advancements are continually being made in pesticide application technology including improved personal protection equipment. New pesticide laws and label language is something to watch for as well. Research focusing on the long term health effects of pesticides is underway and preliminary results are available. Please stop by our display and see what we are all about. We’d love to meet you and discuss the latest in the world of pesticide safety!

Pesticide Safety Education Program (PSEP)
1201 S. Dorner Dr.
Urbana, IL 61801
(800)644-2123; www.pesticidesafety.uiuc.edu

PSEP Specialists:
Michelle Wiesbrook
(217)244-4397; buesinge@illinois.edu
Phil Nixon
(217)333-6650; pnixon@illinois.edu