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Risk Control Institute

The Department of Human Resource Management Workers' Compensation Services, in partnership with the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of Business and the Department of Treasury Division of Risk Management, is pleased to present the Virginia Risk Control Institute (VRCI ). VRCI includes a Risk Control Certificate Track and a Risk Management Certificate Track. Each track offers five 3-semester-credit undergraduate courses designed to assist state agencies and designated local government agencies to better control workplace accidents, injuries and occupational health exposures. Workers' Compensation Services or the Division of Risk Management will pay course tuition fees and textbook costs for those who successfully complete each course, and whose agencies approve their participation as part of a focused agency loss reduction effort. However, meals and lodging will be at agency expense as allowed by State Travel Regulations. Classes are held in state facilities here in the greater Richmond area. Participants who successfully complete RC-1, RC-2, RC-3 and their choice of RC-4, RC-5, or RC-6 in the Risk Control Track OR any four classes in the Risk Management track will receive a certificate of completion from the Virginia Risk Control Institute.

The five courses in the Virginia Risk-Control Track are:

  • RC-1: Regulatory Aspects of Safety & Risk Control
  • RC-2: Incident Investigation & Analysis
  • RC-3: System Safety
  • RC-4: Ergonomics
  • RC-5: Benefits and Costs of Safe Programming 
  • RC-6: Industrial Hygiene

The five courses in the Risk Management Certificate track are:

  • RM-1: Property and Liability Insurance
  • RM-2: Insurance Law
  • RM-3: Risk Management for Public Entities
  • RM-4: Benchmarking & Best Practices in Risk Management
  • RM-5: Legal Environment of Risk Management

Why Build a Cadre of Informed Agency Safety Managers and Decision-Makers?

Workers' Compensation losses, liability claims, citations for non-compliance with growing numbers of federal and state Health, Safety and Environmental (HSE) mandates, they all present real and present challenges to Virginia agency risk managers, safety specialists, and other decision-makers. Executive Order 109 (10): Workplace Safety & Employee Health recognized the seriousness of the Commonwealth's risk control challenges by directing Virginia state agencies and operational programs to focus and direct their loss control efforts. The VRCI supports EO 109 by helping agencies to develop the internal expertise to build and maintain effective risk control programs, not only now but also in the future.

Many risk managers and safety officers now working in state or local government have had no formal training in risk control (loss prevention and loss control). They have had to rely on personal development efforts and trial-and-error. 

The Virginia Risk Control Institute responds to this situation in two important ways: 1) it provides short-term training in key HSE program areas; and 2) it serves to develop, over time, a cadre of trained state HSE program managers.

  • Short-Term Training in Key HSE Program Areas: Short-Term Training in Key HSE Program Areas: VRCI participants complete a rigorous program of study that requires mastery of a number of key HSE program topics and issues. Participants complete focused project assignments in which they apply course content to real-world agency problems. Students are tested and evaluated in such content areas as: HSE laws, regulations, and regulatory processes; accident/injury causation; the design and operation of accident/incident data reporting and collection systems; analyzing complex processes and systems; identifying and prioritizing risks; “designing out” significant loss producing hazards and threats; and, a variety of additional specialized programmatic topics, such as ergonomics and accident cost-accounting.
  • Long-Term Development: Long-Term Development: A Cadre of Trained HSE Program Managers . VRCI courses emphasize theory into practice; that is, each course provides a thorough academic treatment of the subject, but with emphasis on practical, real-world application. Since VRCI coursework requires participants to personally adapt, test, and evaluate what they learn through practical case-applications within their own job settings, graduates report finding themselves much better equipped to effectively respond to the complex HSE problems now confronting their agencies.

How the VRCI can help with the Governor's Executive Order 109: Workplace Safety & Employee Health?

Need information on how this program can assist you and your agency to comply with the Governor's Executive Order 109: Workplace Safety and Employee Health and with other federal and state safety mandates? For information or help, contact Kristie McClaren at 804-786-0362 or E-mail kristie.mcclaren@dhrm.virginia.gov

VRCI Faculty?

VRCI courses are coordinated byTimothy Cook, Director of the Risk and Insurance Studies Center, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Business and taught by VCU faculty. Questions about course content may be directed to Mr. Cook at his office (804) 828-1486, or E-mail tcook@vcu.edu.


The Department of Human Resource Management Workers' Compensation Services will pay course tuition fees and textbook costs for employees of agencies who carry their Workers' Compensation insurance through DHRM. The Department of Treasury's Division of Risk Management will pay costs for state agency, local government and constitutional officer employees if they are insured in VA RISK or VA RISK II. However, meals and lodging will be at the employer's expense, as allowed by State Travel Regulations. Failure to successfully complete a course will result in a charge to the student's agency for the cost of tuition and texts.

Scheduling & Location?

A course is offered both the Risk Control Track and the Risk Management Track eachspring and fall semester. Classes are held in state facilities in the greater Richmond area and are scheduled so that state employees are away from work only two to four days in any given month. Each individual course consists of four two-day class sessions. Classes meet from 9:00 am to 4:30 pm.

Who Is Eligible?

The VRCI is open to Virginia state and local government employees currently responsible for human resources, workers' compensation, risk management, and/or developing, implementing, and monitoring employee health and safety programs. Agencies whose personnel participate in the VRCI must currently be insured through the Commonwealth's Office of Workers' Compensation or insured by DRM. Applicants for VRCI courses must hold an earned high school diploma or GED. Please contact the Office of Worker's Compensation (see below) for details.

Acceptance into this Class:

Acceptance will be based upon not only experience, but also safety/health background and the percentage of time spent in direct support of agency safety, health, or risk management goals. Class size is limited to 30 participants.

How To Apply?