Water Warriors Initiatives is a joint effort by the New England Water Environment Association (NEWEA) and our Affiliated State Associations to recruit and retain returning and retiring U.S Armed Forces veterans into the drinking water and clean water infrastructure fields.
Many skills learned in the Armed Forces, particularly with equipment maintenance and science based programs, translate well into a successful career protecting the one thing no one in our country can live without, clean water. At the same time, many of our most qualified water/wastewater operators are reaching retirement age, leaving the industry with a labor shortage, not to mention the imminent loss of decades of institutional knowledge.
The Water Warrior Initiative seeks to tackle these two problems by promoting the water/wastewater field as a desirable career options for returning veterans. The objectives include:
- Providing education and training opportunities,
- Streamlining the certification process for our veterans, and
- Providing placement assistance and internships.
This initiative will require the coordinated efforts of industry leaders, veterans organizations, and government agencies, but the end result, getting veterans into good paying jobs while serving their communities, is worth it.
The timing has never been more opportune to provide those who served our country with a career that will provide for their future, while still allowing them to serve their local communities.
If you are interested in getting involved in this exciting effort, or want to learn more about proving an internship at your facility for a returning veteran, contact the Water Warriors State Liaisons:
Connecticut – Chris Lund, Groton, CT CLund@groton-ct.gov
Maine – Peter Goodwin, Livermore, ME firstname.lastname@example.org
Massachusetts – Jeremiah Murphy, Newburyport, MA email@example.com
New Hampshire – Dustin Price, Berwick, ME firstname.lastname@example.org
Rhode Island – Janine Burke-Wells, Warwick, RI email@example.com
Vermont – Bob Fischer, South Burlington, VT firstname.lastname@example.org