Waters Lab

Laboratory Standard Operating Procedures

In this lab, we believe that science is real, love is love, Black Lives Matter, feminism is for everyone, trans rights are human rights, ants and flies are cool, and everyone is welcome here.

Waters Lab in the Science Complex RM LL79, lab benches and equipment

The SOPs we follow are about more than just research protocols, they detail how we look out for each other and promote safety, inclusion, growth, and discovery.

Summary of how laboratory will be used:

This is an insect behavior and physiology laboratory used by faculty, staff, and research students.

Laboratory regulations:

  1. In this lab, we believe that science is real, love is love, Black Lives Matter, feminism is for everyone, ants and flies are cool, and everyone is welcome.

  2. We respect each other, we value our differences, and we cultivate a safe, collaborative, and synergistic social network and professional environment.

  3. We promote safe working habits and accept the responsibility to look out for each other’s safety and welfare, alerting anyone at any time about a potentially concerning situation.

  4. If anyone is alerted to a potentially concerning situation, work should stop immediately, and time allowed for discussion and review.

  5. Everyone is expected to share contact information, including email and mobile numbers and consent to respectful phone/text message communication.

  6. We follow all general lab safety guidelines and applicable local/state/federal laws.

  7. Our lab members often engage in fieldwork or conference travel and must conduct themselves in a responsible manner, following these regulations and the college’s code of behavior, whether conducting fieldwork on-campus or off-campus.

  8. Many students engaged in fieldwork or travel for research (on a national/international basis) work alone or far from home and unfortunately may be vulnerable and subjected to harassment, discrimination, and other kinds of unwanted attention. We do not condone any of this and will take steps to be cognizant of our surroundings and protect each other to the greatest extent possible, including being aware of risks and available resources for assistance before engaging in fieldwork.

  9. Non-dangerous insects collected according to protocols in Rhode Island may be reared in this lab, but we do not keep live insects from out-of-state.

  10. No one is allowed to move or change pressure regulators on gas cylinders except Dr. Waters without explicit training and permission.

  11. Carbon dioxide gas cylinders must be closed at the tank (not the bench regulator) unless actively in use.

  12. Due to the low-risk nature of our work, we do not usually wear standard lab PPE (coats, gloves, goggles), but on occasion when handling sharps or chemicals, proper PPE use is expected.

  13. Honesty is always preferred to ignorance or deception; any accident, mistake, oversight, or error can be forgiven. Our work is important, but it must always be low-pressure; there should never a reason to feel compelled to fabricate data or consider any other unethical behavior.

  14. If an important data file has been renamed by accident or data lost in any other way, it is better to accept the loss and repeat the work rather than attempt to remember or fix the mistake.

  15. Students may work with the lab door open or closed. Closed is the standard for safety and access reasons, but it can be appropriate to prop open the door for access to the adjacent lab or while eating or drinking in the hallway. The lab door should not be propped open and abandoned.

  16. Students are encouraged to have music or radio playing in the background when working alone, but are strongly discouraged from using earpods or headphones unless absolutely necessary.

  17. All injuries must be reported to the supervising faculty member.

  18. We take the risks of repetitive stress, physical labor, and/or ergonomic considerations seriously; all are welcome and encouraged to take steps to promote healthy posture and work habits.

Emergency services and procedures:

  1. The Fire Department may be summoned automatically by pulling Fire Alarm boxes located in the hallway. Should the fire alarm sound, leave the building immediately via the nearest exit. The Fire Department is summoned automatically when the alarm sounds.

  2. Emergency 911 Services are available by direct dialing from campus phones. However, a call placed from a campus phone does not automatically identify the exact location/building of the calling station with the 911 Emergency Center. The calling station is merely identified as Providence College; the caller must convey the exact location/building to the Center. Example of an emergency statement for telephone use: “This is Providence College. A serious accident has occurred in the science complex. Please send the (rescue squad, fire apparatus, etc.) to Albertus Magnus Hall room LL79/80 at the College. We will try to have a person at the front gate (Eaton and River) to direct you.” The nearest emergency room services are available at Roger Williams Medical Center.

  3. In the event of a concerning situation, if a lab member does not feel safe calling public safety officers, and really at any time and for any reason, Dr. Waters can be reached at 480-388-0728.

  4. In the event that a concern needs to be raised with respect to Dr. Waters, or for which direct communication with Dr. Waters is not preferred or possible, additional individuals you could contact for support and assistance include the biology department chair, department administrator, and any other biology faculty.

Personal Protective Equipment:

  1. Close-toed shoes are required. All other PPE (lab coats, gloves, goggles, etc) are at the discretion of the individual and depending on the situation. We rarely have need for them, but they are available when necessary.

  2. Note that additional PPE may be required for fieldwork, including but not limited to an effective insect spray to deter ticks, appropriate footwear and clothes for walking through wooded areas to collect insects, and portable batteries for powering mobile devices (which are required at all times in case of a fieldwork emergency).