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Water and Wastewater Professionals Workforce Week begins Dec. 11
December 07, 2023
Commemoration focuses on service to Michigan communities, opportunities for career development
It takes thousands of water professionals working behind the scenes in Michigan to keep our taps flowing, toilets flushing, and rivers and lakes safe for recreation and wildlife.
Dec. 11-17, the annual Water and Wastewater Professionals Workforce Week will honor those highly trained and certified operators, technicians, administrative professionals, and other specialists devoted to Michigan communities’ water infrastructure – and highlight career opportunities in the field. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer dedicated the week with a proclamation.
The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) is joining the statewide recognition by highlighting the vital role of these professionals in providing water services to all Michiganders. Michigan’s water and wastewater industry supports the state’s health and success and encompasses a wide variety of high-demand occupations including engineering, biology, finance, chemistry, business administration, communications, and trade skills.
A 2018 projection from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics found that the U.S. will need to replace 8.2% of its water operators annually through at least 2026.
Michigan has more than 4,600 certified drinking water operators, 1,700 municipal wastewater operators, 1,600 industrial wastewater operators, and nearly 16,000 industrial and construction/soil erosion storm water operators. More information about employment opportunities is available on EGLE’s water careers webpage.
“Water industry professionals manage and protect our Great Lakes State’s incomparable water resources,” said Eric Oswald, director of EGLE’s Drinking Water and Environmental Health Division. “This week is a fitting tribute to their work to maintain safe and reliable water supplies and protect Michigan’s environment.”
Three EGLE webinars will offer water professionals the opportunity to earn continuing education credits during the week:
- Drinking Water Webinar-Safe Drinking Water Act Review: 10 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 12.
- Joint Drinking Water/Wastewater Webinar-Water and Wastewater Technical Assistance: 10 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 13.
- Wastewater Webinar-Collection System Operator Certification and CMOM Permit Requirements: 10 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 14.
Social media posts related to the week will use the hashtag #MiWaterProsWeek.
Stay up to date on EGLE news at Michigan.gov/MIEnvironment.