Mike Miller, East Troy director of Public Works and Utilities, advocates training the next generation of wastewater treatment plant operators soon – right now, in fact.
He says programs such as Gateway’s apprentice and academic programs, which provide training for operators, are needed right now. Why? There is an extreme lack of qualified treatment operators, which will only increase as the current workforce retires.
“People are not entering this field at all,” says Mike. “We have been saying that five to 10 years out, there will be no one to operate our treatment plants. What will we do about that?
“This is why I have pushed for us to participate in Gateway’s apprentice program.”
Gateway offers a wastewater treatment operator apprentice program. Also, much of the training needed for operators is embedded within its Freshwater Resources academic program. Municipalities from southeastern Wisconsin seek apprentices and graduates of the program to meet the growing need for skilled operators.