Third annual workforce development program offers Camden-based adults water utility industry training during 9-week program
Today, New Jersey American Water hosted a graduation ceremony for the third annual Water Utility Pipeline (Water UP!) training program, a paid, 9-week workforce development program for adults in partnership with Rowan College of South Jersey (RCSJ). This year’s cohort of nine adults, mostly from Camden, received hands-on water utility industry and essential classroom-based business training necessary to join the water and wastewater utility industry upon graduation.
“New Jersey American Water is pleased to honor another class of talented Water UP! graduates who are ready to take on a career in the water utility industry,” said Mark McDonough, President, New Jersey American Water. “Investing in our current and future employees is a central part of how we continue to grow and innovate. We thank Rowan College of South Jersey and the Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority for their partnership in this year’s cohort, and we are grateful for the NJ DEP support, which provided grant funding to make this year’s program possible.”
“My DEP colleagues and I congratulate the nine graduates of the Water UP! program who have made the commendable decision to work toward the betterment of their communities,” New Jersey Environmental Commissioner Shawn M. LaTourette said. “In New Jersey, we are working hard every day to improve the quality of life and health of our urban areas and overburdened communities. The Water UP! program builds upon our efforts by providing opportunities to train and place people in green jobs that grow our economy and make a real difference. The DEP is proud to be part of this effort, providing funding through our Building Our Resilient, Inclusive and Diverse Green Economy (BRIDGE) initiative.”
The 2023 Water UP! graduating class features nine adults: four from Camden, and one each from Bellmawr, Evesham Township, Gloucester City, Salem City, and Winslow Township. The participants were selected by New Jersey American Water and Rowan College of South Jersey through an application and interview process. The training was held at Rowan College of South Jersey in Sewell and New Jersey American Water’s new Lawnside Operations Center. Participants received both hands-on field training and classroom-based lessons, such as utility mechanic, field operations, water production, water quality, OSHA 30, customer service, software and procedures, resume writing, job interview skills and more. They also toured New Jersey American Water’s Delaware River Water Treatment Plant in Delran and Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority’s Wastewater Treatment Facility in Camden.
“Our city has been a partner to American Water for many years. With their headquarters in our city, we know how important the contributions of their workforce are to the success of the water industry, as well as the communities they serve,” said Camden Mayor Victor Carstarphen. “We’re very excited that several young adults from Camden graduated from this year’s cohort, representing just some of the many talented individuals who live and work in our city. I look forward to their success and continuing to work alongside New Jersey American Water as the Water UP! Program continues.”
“Education and industry partnerships such as the 'Water UP!' training program is exactly how RCSJ wants to work with businesses in the community,” stated Dr. Fred Keating, RCSJ president. “When the industry experts tell us what training is needed for the job, RCSJ can create a successful, innovative educational pathway and our collaborative efforts make a difference in our communities. South Jersey needs more businesses to engage like New Jersey American Water has, to build educational programs that lead to in demand jobs.”
Water UP! connects young adults from traditionally underserved communities in New Jersey American Water’s service areas with transformative career opportunities in the water and wastewater industry. Through a combination of hands-on training and classroom-based learning, participants are uniquely prepared for entry level opportunities within New Jersey American Water, American Water, and its utility industry partners. Participants are also receiving six college technical elective credits from Rowan College of South Jersey upon completion of the program.
First launched in the fall of 2021, the Water UP! program has included cohorts in Camden and Plainfield, N.J. The 2023 Water UP! program is funded by a grant from the New Jersey Governor’s Office of Climate Action, the Green Economy & the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s the Building our Resilient, Inclusive, and Diverse Green Economy (BRIDGE) Initiative.
To learn more about Water UP!, visit www.newjerseyamwater.com/WaterUp.
About New Jersey American Water
New Jersey American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 2.8 million people. For more information, visit www.newjerseyamwater.com and follow New Jersey American Water on Twitter and Facebook.
About American Water
With a history dating back to 1886, American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse U.S. publicly traded water and wastewater utility company. The company employs more than 6,400 dedicated professionals who provide regulated and regulated-like drinking water and wastewater services to more than 14 million people in 24 states. American Water provides safe, clean, affordable and reliable water services to our customers to help keep their lives flowing. For more information, visit amwater.com and diversityataw.com. Follow American Water on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
Denise Venuti Free
Senior Director of Communications & External Affairs
New Jersey American Water