Course Descriptions


Basic Excel Course

This training will cover computer operation fundamentals and the basics of Excel, as used by water and wastewater treatment plant operators and other system personnel. Participants will learn the basics of Excel spreadsheets. This course is recommended for operators and others with some working experience with computers.  Each attendee will be working on a dedicated laptop computer as provided by VRWA throughout the training session. Registration limit of 10 individuals per session, first come first basis.

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Exam Preparation

Advanced Operator’s Certification Class 3&4

This training program is designed for new Class 3 & 4, for those training to become operators. The program will prepare individuals to take the Vermont State Class 3 & 4 water operator certification exams. All aspects of water operations are covered during this multi-week course. Attendees are expected to attend all the given sessions. The following texts are required for this course and can be ordered directly from VRWA: AWWA Water Treatment 3 & 4 ∙ AWWA Water Treatment Operator Training Handbook ∙ AWWA Operator Certification Study Guide ∙ Math Handbook

Distribution Course

This course is designed for those involved with the distribution of potable water who are seeking a Class D certification. The texts for this course will be: AWWA Transmission and Distribution ∙ Math Handbook for Water System Operators ∙ AWWA Operators Certification Study Guide. Topics in this class will include: Distribution certification, Water Supply Rule, Water sampling procedures, Basic water chemistry, Water hydraulics, Distribution system design, Tank design, Blueprint reading, Pumps and pumping, Valve operation and maintenance, Cross connections, Hydrants and flushing program, Meters and backflow, Leak detection, VOSHA regulations, Instrumentation and controls & Water mathematics

Exam Preparation Course (Class 3/4/D)

This course is designed as a short review for water operators prior to the Exam. The course will review Class 3, 4 and D water system operations. We will review testing theory, math questions, exam questions, and general water system operator questions. There will be a group exam taken during the course.

Small Systems Class 2 Water Operator Certification Course

This course is designed for those who will be taking the VT Class 2 Water Operator Certification Exam. The eighteen hour class provides a survey of aspects of operating a small public water system using groundwater as a source. The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) requirements, sampling water sources, well construction, source protection, storage, distribution, hydraulics, cross-connections, safety, disinfection, treatment, and water math will be covered. This class is not designed for the operators of Transient Systems (TNCs) *BRING A LUNCH*

Small Systems Exam Preparation Course

This course is designed as a short review for water operators prior to the exam.  The course will review Class 2 water system operations. We will review testing theory, math questions, exam questions, and general water system operator questions. There will be a group exam taken during the course.

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Basic Math for Water and Wastewater Operators

This is a basic math course for operators. The formulas covered will be area, volume, psi, temperature and detention time.

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Operations and Maintenance

2-Day Wastewater Sampling and Daily Lab Procedures

A great class for new operators or those needing a refresher. Your analytical data is useless if proper sampling and sound laboratory techniques have not happened. We will be covering sampling locations, proper lab techniques, equipment calibrations, quality assurance, calculations and reporting practices for the analysis of pH, Total Residual Chlorine and Settleable Solids. This is an excellent opportunity to learn from a person who has been evaluating laboratory procedures throughout New England for over 25 years. Bring lunch (coffee and snacks provided)

Effective Utility Management

This workshop is designed to assist utilities in addressing the challenges and improving the management of their operations and infrastructure. Topics will include: How to deliver increasingly efficient and higher quality services. How to improve long-term sustainability and increase resiliency. How to use the Rural and Small Systems Guidebook to Sustainable Utility Management to make improvements at your system. Through group and individual exercises, including team and self-assessments, participants will learn how utilities can make improvements in ten key management areas, with a focus on their most pressing challenges. *BRING A LUNCH*

How To Prepare For A Sanitary Survey

Designed for all water systems required to have a sanitary survey of their water system by the Drinking Water and Groundwater Protection Division, this seminar covers all aspects of a sanitary survey and how the water system operator can prepare for one. Topics covered include record keeping, source, treatment, disinfection, storage and distribution components that will be inspected during the survey. Sanitary surveys are designed to ensure that water systems are in compliance with the Water Supply Rule and provide safe drinking water to consumers.

Informational Network For Local Operators (INFLO) Rotating Biological Contactors (RBC’s) Roundtabl

This INFLO session will be an open forum roundtable discussion on the operation of RBC’s. Who better to learn from than the wastewater specialists and managers in the field that operate these types of systems. Discussion on general operating parameters, winter operations, process control & testing, troubleshooting and maintenance will be some of the topics to be discussed. Following the roundtable discussion there will be a tour of the Windsor’s RBC facility with a design capacity of 1.13 mgd

Informational Network For Local Operators (INFLO) Sequential Batch Reactors (SBR’s) Roundtable

This INFLO session will be an open forum roundtable discussion on on the operation of SBRS. Who better to learn from than the wastewater specialists and managers in the field that operate these types of systems. Discussion on general operating parameters, winter operations, process control testing, troubleshooting and maintenance will be some of the topics to be discussed. Following this session there will be an opportunity to tour the Middlebury 2.2 mgd Aqua Aerobics SBR Treatment Plant

Lagoon System Operations with Discussion on Nitrogen and Phosphorous Removal

This in-depth seminar will cover proper operation and troubleshooting of aerated lagoons. Learn the importance of good aeration, proper mixing, sludge removal and algae control in your lagoon process operation. Also hear about capacity increasing BOD treatment, “painless” sludge removal and algae control using barley straw. Discussion on nitrogen and phosphorous removal.  A great review for certification exams. Bring lunch (coffee and snacks provided)

Leak Detection and Pipe Locating—With Hands-On Experience

This course is designed to help operators use equipment for leak detection and pipe location.  From identifying appropriate tools to how the tools work, this course will educate Water Systems Operators on different methods of identifying water system leaks and pipe location. Also, new technologies in equipment that allow integrating asset management, mapping, and GIS information with leak detection programs will be discussed.

Metering In The 21st Century

This course will bring you through the first meters used at water systems through today. It will discuss direct reading units, mobile and fixed network metering. The course will also review billing and accurate reading of meters along with how to correctly read meters and how to install and proper sizing of meters. We will look at testing and changing out meters and a brief discussion on no-lead changes. Be prepared for an entertaining look at metering.

Operation & Maintenance Manuals—Hands On Workshop

Bring your current O&M Manual. In this training, we will review the state template, where to find the information needed, and how to organize your document. There will be limited time to work on your system O&M Manual and ask specific questions.

Optimize Your Water And Wastewater Pump Stations

Water and wastewater operators and managers will learn how to effectively maintain and operate pump stations. Electrical components and failures will be covered in detail. We will cover basic hydraulic principles of centrifugal pumps, focusing on common problems, learning to detect, troubleshoot and make repairs. Proper planning will prepare you for breakdowns and the unexpected. This is a great class for exam preparation.

TNC Operations

This course is designed for Transient Non-Community (TNC) Water System Operators. No matter what your experience as a water system operator, this course will help you better manage your water system. For Class 1B operators, this course will fulfill the requirement to obtain 3 continuing education credits prior to renewal of your certification. The course will review the following topics: disinfecting your water system (UV and chlorine); sampling procedure and sampling schedules; sanitary survey review; common water system deficiencies; rules and regulations (current and upcoming rules); discussion of seasonal operations; basic site investigations.

Troubleshooting Water and Wastewater Control Systems

Learn how to troubleshoot your automated water and wastewater systems. These days our facilities are often controlled by scada systems and programmable logic controllers. Learn how these systems integrate with field control wiring to keep them operating as designed. You will be learning how to read control schematics and apply troubleshooting techniques from instructor Dan Pratt of Pratt and Smith Electric Inc. Dan is a master electrician and control panel builder with extensive experience in the water and wastewater fields.

Understanding Your Motor Control Panels

Water and wastewater operators, while not electricians, need to understand these critical components and possess the skills to troubleshoot problems. Also a great review class for exams as electrical theory, formulas and safety will be covered in detail. This is a hands on class, work stations with actual control panels will be used. Please bring your voltage/amp meter if you have one.     

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Industrial Discharges, Pretreatment Requirements and Your Wastewater Treatment Facility

Discharges from industries can be very different from typical domestic sewage. These discharges may have significant impacts on the proper operation of your wastewater treatment facility, your ability to manage sludge, operational costs, and your ability to comply with your discharge permit. This class will discuss the pollutants associated with various types of industrial discharges, pretreatment regulations, and provide you information on their impacts and guidance on how to oversee these discharges to minimize their effects on your facility and your collection system. This is a great class from a former long time staff member of VT ANR’s wastewater management program.  

Interpreting Your Permit—Phosphorous TMDL Primer

This important session will explain components and requirements found in recently issued Lake Champlain NPDES draft permits and the corresponding fact sheets. DEC Wastewater Program staff will provide you with important information contained in the fact sheets such as the MAPP – Reasonable Potential Determinations and the role this plays in permit limits, Anti-Backsliding, phosphorous waste load allocation determinations and other discharge limitations and monitoring requirements. Explanation of requirements in the permits for Phosphorous Optimization Plans, Phosphorous Elimination/Reduction Plans, WET testing, non-compliance notifications, running total waste load reporting, proficiency testing, running annual waste load reporting and more. In preparation for attending this session please go to: Review both the fact sheet and draft permit for a system if you have not seen one yet and come prepared with questions.

Revised Total Coliform Rule

This course will look at key portions of the Revised Total Coliform Rule, which went into effect in April 1, 2016. It will discuss the following topics: major differences between the current Total Coliform Rule and the Revised Total Coliform Rule; monitoring under the RTCR, including baseline compliance sampling frequency, repeat sampling, additional routine sampling, and triggers for increased monitoring; the various new “triggers” under the RTCR; Level 1 and Level 2 site assessments and corrective actions required under the RTCR; and the various violations under the RTCR.

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VOSHA Safety Training: Overview of Hazard Communication, Personal Protective Equipment, Trenching an

Keep your employees and fellow coworkers safe by gaining an understanding of the following safety standards:  Hazard Communication, Personal Protective Equipment, Trenching and Confined Space.

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