Schools with Wastewater Treatment Programs: How to Choose

Dec 05, 2019

Licensed wastewater treatment technicians and wastewater plant operators make sure that water is purified to local, state and federal specifications. Water purification technology requires technical and applied science skills that can be learned through trade programs at vocational and community colleges.

Aspiring wastewater treatment technicians may gain training through 1-year certificate programs or 2-year associate's degree programs.

Schools with Wastewater Treatment Programs

The institutions below offer programs in wastewater technology or wastewater treatment.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition 2018-2019*
Gateway Community College New Haven, Connecticut 2-year, Public Certificates, Associate In-state $4,424
Out-of-state $13,192
Linn-Benton Community College Albany, Oregon 2-year, Public Certificates, Associate In-state $4,922
Out-of-state $10,991
Lewis and Clark Community College Godfrey, Illinois 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate In-state $9,552
Out-of-state $12,552
Western Kentucky University Bowling Green, Kentucky 4-year, Public Associate In-state $10,512// Out-of-state $26,280
University of Florida Gainesville, Florida 4-year, Public Certifications $655 for each
Pikes Peak Community College Colorado Springs, Colorado 2-year, Public Associate, Certificates In-state $3,840
Out-of-state $14,928
Des Moines Area Community College Ankeny, Iowa 2-year, Public Diploma, Certificate In-state $4,680
Out-of-state $9,360
Zane State College Zanesville, Ohio 2-year, Public Associate In-state $5,156
Out-of-state $10,016

*Source: National Center for Education Statistics

School Selection Criteria

Consider the following when looking for wastewater treatment schools:

  • Students should seek program certification, since wastewater treatment technicians are required to be licensed by the state in which they work.
  • Students might research requirements to ensure that they receive the necessary level of training since some states have up to four different levels of licensure based on the type of work done.
  • Certificate programs offer students the basic skills they need for entry-level jobs operating wastewater treatment facilities. Associate's degree programs offer additional advanced courses, and these programs may qualify graduates for wastewater technician positions.

Wastewater Treatment Certificates

Certificate programs are offered in water treatment and distribution system technology, wastewater management and wastewater plant operations. Some certificate programs offer internships that allow students to experience wastewater treatment technology firsthand.

Associate's Degrees in Wastewater Technology

Associate's degree programs are available in water and wastewater treatment, wastewater technology, water purification technology and environmental health technology. Through course work and practical labs, students learn to calibrate, maintain and operate water treatment equipment. They learn to follow safety procedures, regulations and ethical guidelines, and use computers for operating water treatment machinery.

When researching wastewater treatment programs, students should ensure that they will prepared for licensure and that the coursework matches their career goals.

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