The apprenticeship program is a two-year program that draws training resources from the system sponsor, our state and federal partners, and RWAU. A water or wastewater system will either employ a new employee or enroll a current employee in the program by agreeing to be the individuals sponsor. Together, the sponsor and RWAU will work with the apprentice to train and instruct the apprentice over two years. Over the course of the apprenticeship program, the apprentice will become a well qualified and fully prepared operator that can tackle the needs of many different water or wastewater systems throughout Utah. 

During the program the apprentice will participate in the following requirements:

  • 4000 on-site training hours from the system sponsor 
  • 288 hours of additional training from RWAU
    • The instruction will be part in-class training and part online webinars
      • The DDW & DWQ will be assisting RWAU in the creation of our online courses
    • The online training will be provided at no cost to those who are enrolled as apprentices
  • Certifications in Water or Wastewater Operations, Utility Management, Cross Connection, Water Rights, and Water Conservation, etc. (certifications will vary depending on water/wastewater designation)

If you are an individual who has not yet been employed by a water or wastewater system, but would like to join as an apprentice and eventually hired on to a system, the process is slightly different. Once you have requested an application, you will work on filling out all the required forms, similar to an already match apprentice. After RWAU has deemed the applicant eligible for the program, apprentices who have not yet been matched with a system will go into a pool of applicants. The pool of eligible applicants will be available to our members who may be looking for a new employee and would accept the terms of hiring an apprentice. RWAU is currently working on formulating a process to disseminate that information to our members. Look for updates in the future. 

Sponsor/Employer Information, Commitments, and Requirements: 

Each apprentice will have a sponsor (water/wastewater system) that will employ the apprentice and agree to provide training on a one-on-one basis. The required number of hours is 4000 (roughly a 2-year working period based on a 40-hour workweek). The sponsor has a number of obligations required for the system to be able to host an apprentice, for example: 

  • Wage Schedule
    • Apprentices shall be paid a progressively increasing wage schedule based on the current salary of an hourly journey worker. Currently, that salary is $16.11. By the end of the two years, the apprentice will need to be making that much an hour. 
  • Work Process Schedule
    • The 4000 hours are broken up into five sections with hour requirements for each section.

  • Sponsors also agree to help monitor and track employee's progress and training hours throughout the two-years. 
  • Sponsors will also be required to submit the following documents, but are not limited to:
    • An employee eligibility letter 
    • An intent to hire form
    • A follow-up interview form, and 
    • An employer acceptance agreement form  
  • Additionally, if the apprentice is already hired by the sponsor they will need to work with RWAU to secure the following as part as the apprenticeship application:
    • Drug screening 
    • Background check
    • Proof of completion of educational requirements

RWAU's Requirements and Commitments

In addition to the 4000 hours of training required by the sponsor, RWAU will provide an additional 288 hours of instruction. The apprentice will fulfill some of these hours by attending pre-established in-class trainings by RWAU. The majority of these trainings happen multiple times a year so that the apprentice can plan accordingly. The rest of the hours will be fulfilled by online classes (webinars) or other variable one-day in-class trainings. The bulk of the in-class trainings will be certifications, as mentioned earlier. 

Rural Water will also be overall tracking and information collection for each apprentice. We have a dedicated team that will work with the apprentice, the system, and anyone else involved to track and monitor the progress of the apprentice throughout the two-year program. In the end, RWAU will help the apprentice apply for the apprenticeship certificate through the department of labor, assuming all requirements have been met. 

Apprentice Information, Commitments, and Requirements:

Along with the commitment to work on all required content for the two years, including any and all certifications that are required for the course. Apprentices will also be required to submit all required documentation for the program. This includes, but is not limited to: 

  • An application request form
  • An apprenticeship application
  • an eligibility letter
  • a follow-up interview with chosen sponsor/employer
  • Standard media release 

Apprentices will be required to go to some in-class courses that are held throughout the state of Utah. The apprentice is responsible for the registration and travel costs associated with those trainings and will need to work with his or her system to make sure he or she can attend the trainings. Once enrolled, RWAU will help each apprentice review the program requirements and create a tentative two-year schedule for completing the program and all requirements.  

Interested in the apprenticeship program? 

To request an application, please print, complete, and email this form to

Apprenticeship Application Request Form

Scholarships available through RWAU:

RWAU recently awarded Manny Rodriguez, a full-ride scholarship for enrollment to the apprenticeship program. We at RWAU are so excited to work with Manny and watch as his experience and training grow over the net two years. Each year we will be offering a full-ride scholarship to the apprenticeship program. Contact Brittney or the RWAU office if you or your system is interested in applying for the scholarship. 

In addition to the full-ride scholarship, RWAU has offered 5 additional half-ride scholarships to our members interested in enrolling their employees as apprentices.

The half-ride scholarship includes the following
  • 50% of all required in-class training registrations will be covered by RWAU (This could be registration to a one-day training, a certification, or conference attendance. Anything required by the apprenticeship program)
  • 50% of any required certification exam fee, for the 1st-attempt, will be covered by RWAU
    • For example, if the apprentice needs to get certified as an operator, RWAU would pay 50% of the exam fee
  • 50% of any and all required material for the apprenticeship program, will be covered by RWAU
    • This would include manuals, study guides, and other program materials 
The half-ride scholarship does not include the following: 
  • Travel costs or travel reimbursement 
  • Reimbursement for missed work hours 

PHONE NUMBER: 801-756-5123