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Career and Education Opportunities for Sewage Treatment Plant Operators in Denver, Colorado

If you want to be a sewage treatment plant operator, the Denver, Colorado area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 2,340 people are currently employed as sewage treatment plant operators in Colorado. By 2016, this is expected to grow 28% to 2,980 people employed. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for sewage treatment plant operators are expected to grow by about 19.8%. Sewage treatment plant operators generally operate or control an entire process or system of machines, often through the use of control boards, to transfer or treat water or liquid waste.

The income of a sewage treatment plant operator is about $20 per hour or $43,490 yearly on average in Colorado. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $18 hourly or $38,430 yearly on average. Earnings for sewage treatment plant operators are better than earnings in the general category of Waste and Recycling in Colorado and better than general Waste and Recycling category earnings nationally.

The Denver area is home to sixty-four schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Denver where you can get a degree as a sewage treatment plant operator. Given that the most common education level for sewage treatment plant operators is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a sewage treatment plant operator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Sewage Treatment Plant Operator

Sewage Treatment Plant Operator video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, sewage treatment plant operators operate or control an entire process or system of machines, often through the use of control boards, to transfer or treat water or liquid waste.

Sewage treatment plant operators record operational data or meter and gauge readings on specified forms. They also add chemicals such as ammonia or lime to disinfect and deodorize water and other liquids. Equally important, sewage treatment plant operators have to clean and maintain tanks, filter beds, and other work areas using hand tools and power tools. They are often called upon to collect and test water and sewage samples, using test equipment and color analysis standards. They are expected to maintain and lubricate equipment, using hand tools and power tools. Finally, sewage treatment plant operators operate and adjust controls on apparatus to purify and clarify water, process or dispose of sewage, and generate power.

Every day, sewage treatment plant operators are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they see details at a very fine level of focus.

It is important for sewage treatment plant operators to inspect equipment or monitor operating conditions and gauges to establish load requirements and detect malfunctions. Somewhat less frequently, sewage treatment plant operators are also expected to direct and schedule plant staff working on routine operations and maintenance efforts.

And finally, they sometimes have to direct and schedule plant staff working on routine operations and maintenance efforts.

Like many other jobs, sewage treatment plant operators must believe in an agile approach to problem solving and deal with change and be thorough and dependable.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Sewage Treatment Plant Operator Training

Red Rocks Community College - Lakewood, CO

Red Rocks Community College, 13300 W Sixth Ave, Lakewood, CO 80228-1255. Red Rocks Community College is a medium sized college located in Lakewood, Colorado. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 7,432 students. Red Rocks Community College has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Water Quality & Wastewater Treatment Management & Recycling Technology/Technician which graduated thirteen and eight students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Water Treatment Operator: ABC offers certification to operators in water treatment, distribution, very small water systems, wastewater treatment, collection, and industrial waste.

For more information, see the Association of Boards of Certification website.

Water/Wastewater Plants Certification: This certification program is designed for engineering technicians who perform the inspection during construction of water/wastewater treatment plants, pumping stations and related buildings and structures.

For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.

Water and Sewer Lines: This certification program is for engineering technicians engaged in the construction and inspection of underground water and sewer lines, and is applicable to both private and public sector technicians.

For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.

Stormwater and Wastewater System Inspection: This certification program is designed for engineering technicians engaged in the inspection of stormwater and wastewater systems and is applicable to both private and public sector technicians.

For more information, see the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies website.

LICENSES

Certified Wastewater Operator (industrial or domestic)

Licensing agency: Colorado Plant Operators Certification Board
Address: Colorado Dept of Public Health and Environment, 4300 Cherry Creek Drive South, Denver, CO 80246-1530

Phone: (303) 692-3558
Website: Colorado Plant Operators Certification Board Colorado Dept of Public Health and Environment

Certified Wastewater Operator A,B,C, or D

Licensing agency: Colorado Plant Operators Certification Board
Address: Colorado Dept of Public Health and Environment, 4300 Cherry Creek Drive South, Denver, CO 80246-1530

Phone: (303) 692-3558
Website: Colorado Plant Operators Certification Board Colorado Dept of Public Health and Environment

Plant Operators Certification

Licensing agency: Colorado Dept. of Public Health & Environment
Address: 4300 Cherry Creek South Drive, Denver, CO 80246-1530

Phone: (303) 692-3620
Website: Colorado Dept. of Public Health & Environment

LOCATION INFORMATION: Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado
Denver, Colorado photo by David Shankbone

Denver is located in Denver County, Colorado. It has a population of over 598,707, which has grown by 7.9% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Denver, 102, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Denver are priced at $223,800 on average, which is below the state average. In 2008, eight hundred thirty-seven new homes were constructed in Denver, down from 1,215 the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Denver are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 25 minutes. More than 34.5% of Denver residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 12.4%, is higher than the state average.

The percentage of Denver residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 53.0%, is more than both the national and state average. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the American Baptist Churches in the USA and the Episcopal Church.

Denver is home to the J F Kennedy Municipal Golf Course and the North Marston Filtration Plant as well as Cheesman Park and Bear Creek Park. Shopping malls in the area include Alameda Square Shopping Center, Boulevard Shopping Center and Brentwood Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Denver can choose from Embassy Suites Hotel Denver Downtown, Intown Suites Aurora and Denver Marriott City Center for temporary stays in the area.