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

There are many career and education opportunities for sewage treatment plant operators in the Thornton, Colorado area. About 2,340 people are currently employed as sewage treatment plant operators in Colorado. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 28% to about 2,980 people employed. This is better than the national trend for sewage treatment plant operators, which sees this job pool growing by about 19.8% over the next eight years. 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.

Income for sewage treatment plant operators is about $20 hourly or $43,490 yearly on average in Colorado. Nationally, their income is about $18 hourly or $38,430 annually. Compared with people working in the overall category of Waste and Recycling, people working as sewage treatment plant operators in Colorado earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Waste and Recycling nationally.

The Thornton area is home to fifty-nine schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Thornton 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: Thornton, Colorado

Thornton, Colorado
Thornton, Colorado photo by bonjourpeewee

Thornton is located in Adams County, Colorado. It has a population of over 113,429, which has grown by 37.7% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Thornton, 94, is below the national average. New single-family homes in Thornton are priced at $176,300 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred ninety-five new homes were constructed in Thornton, down from four hundred eighty-four the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Thornton are educational services, health care, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average commute to work is about 29 minutes. More than 19.9% of Thornton residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 4.8%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Thornton is 6.3%, which is less than Colorado's average of 6.6%.

The percentage of Thornton residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 30.4%, is less than both the national and state average. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Lutheran Church.