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Meet IOSH’s youngest Fellows

Reza Mehboob and Rachel Butler have achieved IOSH’s highest level of membership at the ages of 29 and 30 respectively.

They are our youngest Chartered Fellows, having reached CFIOSH status because of their commitment and dedication to IOSH and the occupational safety and health (OSH) profession.

IOSH only awards Fellowships to Chartered Members of at least five years’ standing who have gone ‘above and beyond’. Here Reza and Rachel share what it takes to join this elite group of just over 500 members to inspire others – of any age – to do the same.

Reza’s story – ‘Fellowship represents competence and integrity’

OSH is an “opportunity to serve humanity” for Reza. Having lived in India and the UK, he is now adding to his academic and OSH achievements with a PhD at the University of New Brunswick, Canada.

Reza joined IOSH early in his career because of its international credentials. He has worked his way through our member grades from Graduate level, guided and mentored by fellow members.

Wanting to achieve CFIOSH as a “symbol of professional excellence”, Reza used our CPD programme to enhance his knowledge and skills, supported and mentored OSH professionals and helped shape the industry through his role as an IOSH Council member. In fact, his past and present volunteering activities saw him receive the President’s Distinguished Service Award in 2018 for services to OSH.

Reza achieved Fellowship in April 2020 – making him the youngest-ever member to reach this level.

“I felt humbled and honoured, and I find it a great privilege to utilise the CFIOSH designation after my name,” said Reza, now 31.

“It represents competence, integrity, ethics and a commitment to the community and the OSH profession as a whole. There are no words to express how grateful I am to IOSH for providing me with a platform for thought leadership that has shaped my career in a way that I never imagined.”

Reza will continue to use his status to influence and motivate others to achieve the highest standards of OSH.

Rachel’s story – ‘Having the CFIOSH badge backs up all the hard work’

Rachel’s career choice stems from her passion for changing preconceptions around health and safety.

Starting as a receptionist at a construction company, she has progressed to become Head of Health, Safety and Risk with commercial property specialists Bruntwood – a role that she relishes.

Rachel was equally keen to move through the IOSH membership grades. Joining as an Affiliate, she took advantage of content, learning and support offered by our Future Leaders Community and her local Branch, Manchester and North West Districts.

Keen to be proactive, she has spoken at webinars, is Treasurer of her local Branch Committee, and on the disciplinary committee – all of which helped her achieve Fellowship status earlier this year.

“I feel incredibly proud,” said Rachel, now aged 31. “As I have never been particularly academic, I like to share my story so others can see that with passion, determination and a genuine desire to help others, they too can achieve this status.

“Having the CFIOSH badge backs up all the hard work and demonstrates that you are ambitious with your career, opening doors for new networking and opportunity.”

Rachel hopes to use her status to influence more women to go for this grade.

“I plan to continue to fly the IOSH flag with the intention to campaign for other young people or those just starting off in their careers to choose IOSH and to explore their development through to Chartership, not just in health and safety, but in any industry,” she said.

“I would also like to influence across sectors, campaigning to businesses to include OSH on all graduate recruitment programmes.”

Three reasons to work towards Fellowship

  1. It has helped me to demonstrate the highest degree of critical thinking and OSH leadership to make the world a better place to live, work and thrive for humankind – Reza.
  2. Continual self-development is crucial to ensure you keep moving forward as a professional – Rachel.
  3. The Fellowship has increased my confidence and respect within the OSH community, providing the motivation to continue to go above and beyond the call of duty – Reza.

Six tips to help you achieve CFIOSH

  • Determine your why and gather your determination to develop yourself and others at your paid work and beyond. I remember a great quote by Jim Rohn: “The stronger the why, the easier the how becomes” – Reza.
  • Self-reflection. Keep on top of your CPD and use that useful tool to look back and track progress with your greatest achievements – Rachel.
  • Utilise IOSH’s CPD programme to enhance and maintain your knowledge and skills in OSH management – Reza.
  • Reach out and use the support that is available to you, including the Future Leaders Community and your local IOSH Branch – Rachel.
  • Be a mentor and a mentee. This will contribute to your competency development – Reza.
  • Go above and beyond the norms of the day job. This can be through volunteering, contributing towards the wider industry and finding ways to genuinely make a difference – Rachel.

Fellowship in three words

Passion, mentorship, community service – Reza.

Positive, challenging, rewarding – Rachel.

Read more about Chartered Fellowship.

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Ali Barlow
Content Officer +44 (0)116 257 3117
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