CAREER PATHS

Electrical Instrumentation Technologist

Within the water and wastewater industry, Electronic Maintenance Technicians, also called Instrument Technicians, are responsible for installing and maintaining various electronic monitoring and communication equipment, including pressure and level recorders, programmable logic controllers, relays and computers. They are responsible for communications systems at treatment plants, pump stations, power generating facilities, electrical substations, and remote locations.

CAREER PATH CERTIFICATION INFO JOB OPENINGS

Electrician

Electricians install, repair, operate, and maintain the electrical and power systems for homes, businesses, factories, and infrastructure within the water and wastewater industry. They are responsible for the wiring and control equipment through which electricity flows and the electrical equipment that it powers.

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Engineer

Engineering is an exciting profession that makes a difference in our world. Engineers play a critical role in providing clean, safe water to sustain life and support our economy. This includes planning, design and construction of new facilities as well as maintenance of existing ones. Engineering jobs in the water and wastewater industry provide the opportunity to earn a good living for yourself and your family while serving your community and protecting the environment.

“There are two things that make my job enjoyable. The first is the satisfaction of knowing that I am building infrastructure that keeps the environment safe from wastewater and pollution. The second is that even though this is a position in civil engineering, I am exposed to all of the other engineering disciplines…. This keeps the job interesting and allows me to learn about things that I might not otherwise be exposed to.” Chris Pachmayer, Union Sanitary District.

CAREER PATH JOB OPENINGS

Environmental Compliance Inspector

An Environmental Compliance Inspector (ECI) inspects industrial, commercial and municipal activities to ensure compliance with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), State Water Board, Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB,) and local regulations and ordinances.

The EPA established and maintains pretreatment regulations for all publicly operated treatment works (POTW) as part of their National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permits. ECIs work with local commercial and industrial dischargers to ensure the POTW can maintain its treatment levels and meet permit requirements. Environmental Compliance Inspectors are sometimes known as Pretreatment Inspectors.

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Mechanic

Under general direction, the Mechanic/Machinist performs preventive, routine and emergency maintenance and repair of a variety of heavy and light equipment, related systems and components.

Knowledge of: basic techniques of shop theory and bench work such as chipping, sawing, filing, drilling, welding (MIG and ARC), soldering, gearing, threading, grinding and heat treatment; maintenance and repair of a variety of equipment including hydraulically and pneumatically operated machinery; arithmetic functions needed for precise measurements in performing machining duties; safety rules and regulations in the workplace, field, and while operating equipment; and familiarity with basic composition, characteristics, and uses of commonly used machine shop metals and materials.

CAREER PATH CERTIFICATION INFO JOB OPENINGS

Wastewater Collections Operator

Wastewater Collections Operators are responsible for skilled tasks in the construction, maintenance, and repair of wastewater system facilities; operating a variety of light and moderately heavy power driven equipment; and ensuring public health and safety by preventing and/or responding to sewage overflows and blockages.

Wastewater Collections Operators are responsible for skilled tasks in the construction, maintenance, and repair of wastewater system facilities; operating a variety of light and moderately heavy power driven equipment; and ensuring public health and safety by preventing and/or responding to sewage overflows and blockages. They inspect, clean, maintain, construct, and repair wastewater collection systems including sanitary sewers, storm drains, pump stations, pipes, manholes and catch basins.

CAREER PATH CERTIFICATION INFO JOB OPENINGS

Wastewater Treatment Operator

Under general supervision, operates, inspects, and maintains a variety of plant equipment in connection with the continuous operation of a large metropolitan wastewater treatment plant; directs lower level operators; and performs related work as required.

The operation, maintenance and cleaning of primary and secondary wastewater treatment equipment and facilities; wastewater treatment principles, methods, and practices; arithmetic; safety rules, codes, and regulations pertaining to the work; basic first aid; the methods and precautions in storing and handling chlorine and other hazardous gases and chemicals; wastewater sampling and routine process control tests.

CAREER PATH CERTIFICATION INFO JOB OPENINGS

According to a workforce report by the Brookings Institute:

  • There are 212 different occupations in the water sector
  • In the US nearly 1.7 million workers fill jobs across the water sector
  • The water sector pays above average according to Brookings, up to 50 percent more for water workers in entry level jobs
  • California hires over 6,000 new water and wastewater professionals per year *

Read the Brookings report. * CA statistics calculated by CWEA based a Cuyamaca College water workforce study.

VISIT CA WATER JOBS

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CAREER ADVICE

Career advice stories are sponsored by WaterTALENT

Recorded Webinar: Finding Your Voice as a Young Water Leader
 A special session for young water leaders of California Content development and from science to stories Presentation and moderation techniques Social media for leaders With Tom Freyberg, Alan Shapiro and Andrew Walker Tom Freyberg believes everyone has a story to tell. Spending nearly a decade travelling the globe for WaterWorld and reporting on major...
Recorded Webinar: Veterans in Water: Continue Serving Your Community
 California’s water utilities are hiring now. They’ll hire thousands of highly-skilled professionals for water jobs this year. Your skills as a veteran could be exactly what water utilities are looking for. Dive into the California water profession. We can show you how. This one hour webinar features four veterans who work on the frontlines...
Recorded Webinar: Women in Water & Power: Working on the Frontlines
 Calling all women (and women supporters) who want to feel empowered in the water, wastewater and power industries! Join us if you are interested in pursuing these amazing careers. This very special one hour webinar discussion features four woman who work on the frontlines of California water. We’re also celebrating these amazing water professionals...

INSPIRING CAREER STORIES

Case Study: How the Ukiah Wastewater Treatment Plant Solved its Debris Problem
Welcome to the City of Ukiah, CA The City of Ukiah is a modest community of about 16,000 people set in the heart of Mendocino County. Conveniently located along the historical Highway 101, Ukiah’s location makes it an accessible cultural and financial hub not only to Mendocino County but to neighboring Lake County as well....
Advanced Water Treatment Operator Profile – John Carroll
The Advanced Water Treatment Operator Certification was developed by water professionals, for water professionals and jointly administered by CA-NV AWWA and CWEA. Professional certification is different than a training or educational program. Training programs offer a certificate of attendance when an individual completes the coursework, but they do not generally award a credential or require...
Advanced Water Treatment Operator Profile – Tyler Lee
The Advanced Water Treatment Operator Certification was developed by water professionals, for water professionals and jointly administered by CA-NV AWWA and CWEA. Professional certification is different than a training or educational program. Training programs offer a certificate of attendance when an individual completes the coursework, but they do not generally award a credential or require...

WOMEN IN WATER

Women in Water: Sabrina Sims, waterTALENT Operator
waterTALENT Operator – Sabrina Sims Water Systems Manager – City of McCall, ID Director of Operations – Western Area Water Supply Laboratory Specialist/Manager – City of Williston, ND Emergency Response Operator – waterTALENT Water & Wastewater Superintendent – City of Alexander, ND Owner/Operator – WETWorks Public Works Director – City of Ranchester, WY Certifications: ID,...
Recorded Webinar: Women in Water & Power: Working on the Frontlines
 Calling all women (and women supporters) who want to feel empowered in the water, wastewater and power industries! Join us if you are interested in pursuing these amazing careers. This very special one hour webinar discussion features four woman who work on the frontlines of California water. We’re also celebrating these amazing water professionals...
Member Profile: Cheyanne Harris, Brown and Caldwell
For Cheyanne Harris, it all started in middle school. Growing up in Sacramento, she attended the School of Engineering and Sciences – a specialized school that invited guest speakers from the math, science and engineering industries. What appealed to Cheyanne about engineering was the opportunity to make a positive impact on the community using math...

VETERANS IN WATER

Veterans in Water: Brian Prenger, Costa Mesa Sanitary District
Brian Prenger Maintenance Worker 1 Costa Mesa Sanitary District Certifications : CWEA Grade 1 Collection Systems Maintenance Branch and Years of Service: USMC 1988-1992 What is your role? My role is of a Maintenance Worker 1 for the  Costa Mesa Sanitary District and our Mission is protecting the health and the environment. My tasks are preventive...
Recorded Webinar: Veterans in Water: Continue Serving Your Community
 California’s water utilities are hiring now. They’ll hire thousands of highly-skilled professionals for water jobs this year. Your skills as a veteran could be exactly what water utilities are looking for. Dive into the California water profession. We can show you how. This one hour webinar features four veterans who work on the frontlines...
Veterans in Water: Alexander Avila, Compost Worker
Name: Alexander Avila Title: Compost Worker Tenure and certifications held: 7 Months/Confined space, Lockout Tag out, Respirator fitting Name of agency: Inland Empire Utilities Agency (IEUA) Branch and years of service: Army National Guard/ 8 years What is your role? In the Army I was a team leader responsible for supervising 6 soldiers. Today I...

CALIFORNIA WATER & WASTEWATER WORKFORCE

West Valley Creates Internship, Career Pathways Program with San Bernardino Community College
Working together to provide an extraordinary academic and work experience that will deliver stable, higher-paying jobs to the Inland Empire, today West Valley Water District (WVWD) Board of Directors President Channing Hawkins and San Bernardino Valley Community College (SBVCC) President Diana Rodriguez signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to create paid or non-paid and part-time or full-time internships and...
EPA Announces Initiative to Recruit and Retain Water Workforce of the Future
Today, at the virtual 2020 WEFTEC conference, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler announced the next step in EPA’s effort to help address workforce challenges that are facing America’s drinking water and wastewater utilities. The new America’s Water Sector Workforce Initiative outlines actions that the public and private sector are committing to that...
EPA Urges States to Support Drinking Water and Wastewater Operations During COVID-19
View CWEA’s round-up of Coronavirus (COVID-19) worker safety information here > Message from the US EPA… Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler sent a letter to Governors in all 50 states, territories and Washington, D.C. urging them to ensure that drinking water and wastewater employees are considered essential workers by state authorities...

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