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Helser, sophomore at James Clemens, develops award-winning safety video

For the second consecutive year, Abbi Helser has won first place in the Student Safety Awareness Video Contest, sponsored by the American Society of Safety Engineers. (CONTRIBUTED)
For the second consecutive year, Abbi Helser has won first place in the Student Safety Awareness Video Contest, sponsored by the American Society of Safety Engineers. (CONTRIBUTED)

MADISON – Abbi Helser, who will be a sophomore at James Clemens High School in August, is the first-place winner in the 2015 Student Safety Awareness Video Contest.

The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) sponsors the competition. Helser has won first place for two consecutive years. She received $1,000 for her win and was invited to attend the ASSE convention in Dallas on June 7-10.

The safety video could be two minutes maximum and had to promote workplace safety.  “This year’s content was meant to highlight the importance of safety professionals,” she said.

Her video, “The Fatal 4,” used characters made of Play-Doh molding compound. “By using clay, I could demonstrate different graphic deaths, like being crushed or falling from a building, but still have little smiling faces for the camera,” Helser said.

Helser’s intended message in the video was to show that safety professionals prevent many accidents from happening. “Without their efforts, many more workplace accidents and deaths would occur each year,” she said.

“I’ve entered the ASSE art contests as long as I can remember,” Helser said. “Creating something for the contest has become an annual event for me. I’ve always done it by myself, not associated with a school.”

When she was younger, Helser entered the association’s poster contest. In 2009 and 2012, she won first place in that competition. In past years, she has attended awards ceremonies at the U.S. Capitol and Department of Labor (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) headquarters in Washington D.C.

Her parents are Chris and Dawn Helser. He works as an explosives safety manager at Redstone Test Center. “My mom, Dawn, keeps the family running smoothly,” Abbi said. The Helsers moved to Madison in 2012 for Chris’ job change.

“I’m definitely an arts person,” Abbi said. “I enjoy drawing and writing but also love music. I play violin and cello.”

To view Helser’s video, visit asse.org/newsroom/naosh/naosh-video-contest.

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