JIFSAN Completes Advanced Quantitative Risk Assessment Training


Instructors led eight participants during the five days of the Advanced Risk Assessment course.

This fall, JIFSAN offered the Advanced Quantitative Risk Assessment Training course with an emphasis on applying modeling methods to real-world risk analysis problems. The course had only been offered once before, and this year, eight participants completed the class.

The course ran from November 17-21 with an optional 5-day refresher course preceding it. Providing an advanced course for interested participants allowed for the opportunity to further develop risk analysis skills and gain more in-depth knowledge of the modeling techniques necessary for risk assessments on an international level.


Managing partner at EpiX Analystics and instructor, Dr. Francisco Zagmutt, helped students prepare for their final presentations.

Instructor Dr. Francisco Zagmutt, a managing partner at EpiX Analytics, returned this year to teach the refresher course and the Advanced Risk Assessment course. The course is part of the partnership between the FDA and EpiX Analytics.


The participants presented their findings to the rest of the class on the last day of the course.

“JIFSAN is a leader in food safety training, and [EpiX Analytics is] very well known in risk analysis training, so it was a good idea to partner together,” Zagmutt said.

The course offers participants a chance to gain hands-on experience and partake in presentations and lectures. Because of the international participants and JIFSAN’s abroad course options, Zagmutt said there is more and more emphasis on following international standards. Many people that take the course will become leaders when they return to their current positions.

"The best part of the course was having time in class to do practice problems to really drive the concepts home and also give us confidence that we were in fact getting it," Lillian Hsu, one of the participants who completed the course, said.

Another participant, Sofia Santillana, works for the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), which conducts research participation programs with the FDA.


Sofia Santillana, center, received her certificate for completion of the course from Dr. Francisco Zagmutt and Dr. Clare Narrod.

"It gave me an overall picture of how to model in risk assessment and then how to fit and work with the data," Santillana said.

JIFSAN will be offering more Risk Analysis courses, both in the classroom and online.

"I highly recommend the course to anyone interested in [Quantitative Risk Assessment] and personally look forward to taking the Advanced [Quantitative Risk Assessment] course to further enhance my knowledge and skillset," Hsu said.

If you are interested in signing up for a Risk Analysis course, visit our website at, contact the Risk Analysis Program at 301-405-1780, or email Dr. Clare Narrod at For updates, check us out on Twitter (@JIFSAN), Facebook, and LinkedIn.