Policy on Undergraduates in Machine Shops


This policy outlines the roles, responsibilities, and authority of University machine shop supervisors and monitors, and the safety requirements which apply to undergraduate students while working in those shops.


This policy applies to all academic departments that have designated shop areas and includes, but is not limited to the following equipment: fixed (electrically, pneumatically, or hydraulically) powered pieces of equipment: drill press, lathe, band saw, table saw, mill, milling machine, grinder, buffer, shear, metal punch, jointer, swing arm saw, radial arm saw, planer, slitter, roll-form machine, cold header, multi-slide machines, drum sanders, belt sanders, veneer cutters, splicers, alligator shears, and any other fixed powered equipment that must operate without guards. It also sets safety standards for machine shops that apply to undergraduate students who use them.


Machine Shop

- a department designated facility which may contain at least one piece of machining equipment.

Designated monitor - 

a machine shop employee, graduate student or post-doc who has received training as described in Section IV and any other training deemed necessary by the machine shop supervisor for the work being conducted. Page 2 of 2


The shop supervisor approves access to the machine shop and is responsible for ensuring that undergraduate students performing activities in their shop:

• Have attended and successfully completed Princeton-specific machine shop and safety training for each type of machine they are expected to operate

• Are conducting work that is commensurate with their skill and training

• Have been instructed on shop emergency procedures including, but not limited to, the location and use of emergency equipment (e.g., emergency eyewash or safety showers, fire extinguishers, shop emergency stop buttons) and the proper procedures for reporting emergencies and summoning help

• Are instructed in what constitutes suitable shop dress - including types of clothing, jewelry, and shoes that must not be worn while working in a machine shop, and are supervised to ensure that they are dressed appropriately before beginning work

• Are provided with and instructed how to use required engineering controls and personal protective equipment and supervised to ensure their proper and consistent use


• Undergraduate students are prohibited from operating machines or performing any other activities in a University machine shop unless supervised by the shop manager or designated monitor. Working alone by undergraduates is strictly prohibited.

• Work performed by undergraduates in machine shops is permitted only during designated times established by the shop supervisor or monitor and must only occur between the hours of 8:00 AM and 2:00 AM.

• Shop supervisors and monitors may prohibit shop access or machinery use by an individual or group for non-compliance with shop safety rules. Serious violations will be referred to the sponsoring faculty member and academic department manager or the Dean of Undergraduate Students as appropriate.

Promulgated December 2011 by Environmental Safety and Risk Management Committee

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Kelly States
Assistant Director
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