About Us


The TECHS study was designed and implemented by an experienced, inter-disciplinary team with expertise in safety and health, occupational medicine, curriculum design, statistics, and IT.


Anca Bejan, MS, COHC, CIH

Ms. Bejan holds an engineering degree from Technical University “Ghe. Asachi” of Iasi, Romania, and a MS degree in industrial hygiene from University of Washington. Ms. Bejan is a CAOHC-certified occupational hearing conservationist and ABIH-certified in the comprehensive practice of industrial hygiene. Ms Bejan has over 15 years of experience in health and safety, and worked in manufacturing and research institutions. Between 2008 and 2014, Ms. Bejan managed the Collision Auto Repair Safety Study (CARSS), a research project that developed and tested solutions for assisting small business owners with improving safety and health in their shops. Since 2014, Ms. Bejan has been working closely with vocational college instructors and deans participating in the TECHS study to develope and implement a comprehensive safety and health curricula for collision repair and machine tool technology trades. Ms. Bejan's work has been published in scientific and trade journals.


David Parker, MD, MPH

Mr. Parker holds an MD degree from University of New Mexico and a Master of Public Health (MPH) from the University of Michigan. His career as an occupational health physician and researcher spans over 40 years. Dr. Parker worked as a commissioned officer in the US Public Health Service where he served in the Epidemic Intelligence Service within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). He was the founding director for the Center Worker Health and Safety within the Minnesota Department of Health, and he has conducted a wide range of research to improve safety and health services for small businesses. Dr. Parker has worked closely with business owners and employees within wood product manufacturing, metal fabrication, and auto collision repair. Dr. Parker provided occupational health care at both the Park Nicollet and HealthPartners medical groups. He has published over 75 scientific papers on a wide range of topics.


Cynthia Digby, PhD

Dr. Digby has a PhD in adult teaching and learning from the University of Minnesota. Dr. Digby has over 25 years of experience working in higher education at universities, technical, and community colleges. Dr. Digby’s research on Programs of Study is available at the National Research Center for Career and Technical Education (NRCCTE). Dr. Digby consulted with the TECHS instructional design team, and technical college faculty, early in the project’s design process to assist with the development of curriculum materials and their hybrid delivery model. Currently, Dr. Digby is at the University of Florida.


Maryellen Skan, MPH

Ms. Skan holds a BS in Environmental Health from the Colorado State University, and a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree in industrial hygiene from University of Minnesota. Ms. Skan’s career in health and safety spans more than 40 years. Ms. Skan has worked as an OSHA inspector, industrial hygienist in a large manufacturing company, and safety and health consultant for an environmental consulting company. For more than a decade, Ms. Skan worked as a safety and health trainer and consultant for the MN Safety Council. Between 2008 and 2014, Ms. Skan contributed her expertise to the Collision Auto Repair Safety Study (CARSS) working closely with collision business owners and workers to identify and correct safety issues in their shops. Since 2015 Ms. Skan has been creating educational materials for the collision repair and machine tool technology programs participating in the TECHS study.


Min Xi, MS, PhD

Mr. Xi holds an engineering degree from Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, a PhD degree in industrial engineering from the Pennsylvania State University, and an MS degree in biostatistics from the University of Minnesota. Dr. Xi has been working on research projects related to occupational safety and health for over 10 years, providing assistance with study-design and data analysis. Dr. Xi is currently involved in several research projects conducted at HealthPartners Institute.


Sheila Buffie, MS

Ms. Buffie is a database application development and programming specialist. Ms. Buffie created all scannable surveys forms, and designed and maintained several databases of the TECHS study.