Water Treatment

What Does a Career in Water Treatment Look Like?

Water and wastewater treatment plant operators manage a system of equipment that transfers and treats water or wastewater to bring it up to drinking water standards. Operators who work in a water treatment plant ensure proper distribution, monitor chemical input, and operate machines to treat and clean water.

Daily responsibilities include taking and recording meter readings, collecting samples, testing, adding chemicals, and performing simple maintenance and repair work on plant equipment. Plant operators must have knowledge on industrial safety, how to use personal protective equipment, chemical handling, basic environmental issues, and regulatory standards.

Types of Jobs

  • Water treatment specialist
  • Wastewater operator
  • Power plant operator
  • Boiler operator
  • Hydrologist
  • General maintenance and repair
  • Hazardous materials removal worker
  • Construction equipment operator


  • A high school degree is required
  • Certification is required by the state
  • On-the-job training is required

water treatment

Accredited Schools for Water Treatment

Some employers may prefer applicants who have completed a certificate program or received an associate or bachelor’s degree in a related field such as environmental science or wastewater treatment technology.

Visit American Water Works Association for information on a career in water treatment.

Click here for a list of colleges for water treatment study.


There are many opportunities in the field of water treatment. Jobs in this field generally pay well, and there is room for advancement. Certifications in a specialized skill and education are valued in this field.

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