Apprenticeship Program Field Operations Boot Camp

Charlotte Water created the City of Charlotte’s first water/wastewater industry apprenticeship program to increase jobs, training, and opportunities for individuals with multiple ​​employment barriers. The apprenticeship program is custom-designed to help individuals achieve the training and experience needed for a successful career at Charlotte Water.

Our second cohort of nine apprentices started in July. After going through orientation and some soft skills training, they are assigned an area to work, either in wastewater or field operations. This entire cohort was assigned to the field operations division. Field operations is our largest division, and the staff is in charge of maintaining the water and wastewater distribution system. Duties include main extensions, leak repairs, sanitary sewer overflow response and cleanup, wastewater pipe cleaning, maintenance of water monitoring stations, and much more.

Before the apprentices get assigned to a zone and a crew, they must go through a seven-week field operations boot camp where they learn how to do the job efficiently and safely.

Below are some photos taken by some the apprentices during boot camp.

Apprentices learn how to properly install a trench box during a pipe repair.
Apprentice Chevorne Lewis learns how to use a jackhammer to break concrete

Apprentices go through a water main leak simulation.
A tamping machine is a tough machine to handle and requires strength and focus.
Various items that apprentices need to know how to use for a repair or install.
Theirry Capongo experiences what 919 gallons per minute feels like from a flushing hydrant

The great thing about the apprenticeship program is that it doesn’t just benefit the apprentices, it also benefits current staff members. It provides them with additional leadership opportunities as apprentice mentors and trainers. In most cases these staff have then been promoted to new positions afterwards.

Group shot with Charlotte Water field operations crew member and trainer Jontavious Thompson.

You can learn more about the program and how to apply on our website.

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