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STLCC’s New Drinking Water Operator Accelerated Training Program to Begin in November

September 28, 2012

The first session of a new 10-day Drinking Water Operator Training course, designed to introduce students to the 24-hour,seven-days-a-week responsibilities of a water utility, will begin Nov. 1 at St. Louis Community College’s Florissant Valley campus. The course will consist of 10 class sessions 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays.  

STLCC’s Workforce Solutions Group is partnering with several community organizations to integrate industry-specific input into all aspects of the program. The Missouri Rural Water Association (MRWA) assisted with the curriculum development and also is providing the lead course instructor, who will help students become entry-level Missouri-certified drinking water operators. Missouri American Water is providing tours of a surface water treatment facility, which will include demonstrations, hands-on water testing sessions, discussions on the environmental impact of water treatment as well as presentations on water industry careers. Alliance Water Resources, in cooperation with Public Water Supply District No. 2 of St. Charles County, is providing tours of a well site as well as demonstrations of various groundwater operation requirements and discussions on specific record-keeping requirements.

The accelerated job training program, funded by an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 7 grant, will cover topics such as water sources, water testing/treatment and operating distribution systems within the classroom, as well as on site at water utility facilities. Participants also will have the opportunity to earn the MO Water Level D Treatment Certification and the MO DS-1 Distribution Certification. 

The training program is approved by the Missouri Department of Natural Resource (DNR) as course No. 1206899. This DNR course approval is equivalent to six months of water treatment and six months of distribution system operating experience. Certification renewal training credit hours are water treatment (57.5 hours), distribution (57.5 hours), wastewater (22.5 hours) and concentrated animal feeding operations (7.0 hours).

Water sector professionals are vital to protecting public health through the operation and maintenance of water and wastewater treatment plants. According to the 2010 Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for 2010-2020, there will be a 12 percent increase, or approximately 12,900 jobs, for water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators.

The program is free to eligible individuals who meet the screening requirements. For more information, contact Rene Dulle at rdulle4@stlcc.edu or at 314-539-5296.