dhrmlogotrans    Department of Human Resource Management

Workers' Compensation

Risk Control Institute

The Office of Workers' Compensation, 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 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. The Office of Workers' Compensation 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, for any in-person classes, 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 four classes in a designated track will receive a certificate of completion from the Virginia Risk Control Institute.  RM/C-1 Principles of Risk Management and Insurance counts towards either track.  For Spring 2022, course offerings were modified and the courses renumbered.  All courses completed in prior semesters count towards the certificate of completion.  Courses may be taken in any order.

The courses in the Risk Control track are:

  • RM/C-1 Principles of Risk Management and Insurance
  • RC-2: Regulatory Aspects & Risk Control Management
  • RC-3: Ergonomics
  • RC-4: Industrial Hygiene
  • RC-5: System Safety Management

The courses in the Risk Management track are:

  • RM/C-1 Principles of Risk Management and Insurance
  • RM-2: Insurance Law for Public Entities
  • RM-3: Risk Management for Public Entities
  • RM-4: Managing Cyber Risk

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 Johnny Nugent at 804-225-2168 or e-mail johnny.nugent@dhrm.virginia.gov.

VRCI Faculty

VRCI courses are coordinated by Robert Taylor, Executive Director, and Lauren Grainger, Associate Director of the Risk Management and Insurance Program, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Business. Class are taught by VCU faculty. Questions about course content may be directed to Robert and Lauren at graingerl@vcu.edu or vrci@vcu.edu or 804-828-1721. 


The Department of Human Resource Management Office of Workers' Compensation 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. For any in-person sessions, 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 in both the Risk Control Track and the Risk Management Track each spring and fall semester. Classes are held either virtually via Zoom or 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 eight total days, 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 Workers' 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?

In order to apply for the program and to take a class at VCU, you will need to fill out the two required forms below via DocuSign. If you have a specific question about the forms, please email vrci@vcu.edu

Within DocuSign, remember to double click on check box fields.


1 - VRCI Application - You will need to enter your supervisor’s name and email. The form will be sent directly to him/her for signing.  Registration for Fall, 2022 closes on Friday, August 12.

2 - VCU Forms - If you have NOT taken a VCU course before, you will need to attach transcripts within this form from your highest-level attained school. 

If you do not submit the required documents, you may receive an administrative hold on your account and may be removed from the course by VCU Records and Registration.

Go Back to Top of Page