A program to connect veterans with disabilities to career opportunities in the water and wastewater sectors such as wastewater plants and drinking water facilities is receiving support from two federal organizations. As part of EPA’s Water Sector Workforce Initiative, the effort combines two of the Obama administration’s top priorities: job placement for veterans and clean water.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ Vocational Rehabilitation and
Employment Program have agreed to implement the training. The two agencies will
work with water utilities, states and local VA counselors to promote water
sector careers, as well as with resources for finding water jobs for veterans.
They also will facilitate locating educational programs to help disabled veterans
transition into water-related industry careers.
More than one-third of all current water
operators are eligible to retire within seven years. At the same time, employment
for water and wastewater operators is expected to grow by 20 percent between
2008 and 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor - faster than the
national average for all other occupations. Veterans may be qualified for a
range of jobs within the field, including engineering, laboratory and water
science, operations and maintenance, management and administration,
communications and public education.
“This agreement comes at the perfect time
to address the predicted workforce shortages in the water and wastewater
industries and the need for transitioning veterans into civilian jobs,” says
Nancy Stoner, acting assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Water.
For more about connecting qualified
veterans with employer needs, go to www.vetsuccess.gov.
Disabled Vets to Get Water-Career Training
June 19, 2012