MMSD summer interns on Pelagos boat

Workforce Development

Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District (MMSD) is committed to growing the next generation of water workforce through a variety of career exploration and training opportunities. 

MMSD Internships

MMSD’s internship program has been in existence for over 25 years. Our goal of the MMSD internship program is to grow awareness of opportunities with MMSD and careers in water-related industries. Exposing students to a hands-on learning experience helps inspire and educate students about future water-related careers. 

MMSD’s intern program operates year-round with the majority of students hired for a summer experience. On average, MMSD hires 30 interns and co-op students for a summer term. The summer intern application period opens in January and closes in February each year. Students can expect a paid work experience in areas such as Water Quality Protection, Laboratory Services, Engineering, Construction, and Sustainability.  To complement the hands-on experience, we offer students activities such as a touring Jones Island and South Shore water reclamation facilities, Green Infrastructure tour, Pelagos Boat Tour, attendance at a Commission Meeting as well as an end of the summer gathering. 

The foundational opportunities students gain through our internship program, results in many students applying for subsequent summer internships with MMSD. In addition, we have hired several former intern participants as permanent MMSD employees, and currently, employ senior-level staff that were once participants in the MMSD intern program.

Regional Internship in Science & Engineering (RISE) Program

The RISE program, sponsored by MMSD, is a career and professional development program for college engineering students who attended high school or are currently residing in the MMSD service area. The program in partnership with Prism Technical provides meaningful paid work experiences for students and an opportunity to build long-lasting working relationships between students and MMSD service providers (construction contractors, engineering designers, consultants, and planning firms). This internship exposes students to opportunities and prepares them for increased success in the Greater Milwaukee engineering infrastructure job market. More than 65 local Milwaukee students have landed internships since the RISE program began in 2009. To learn more about the RISE program and how you can apply.

Learn more about the program in the RISE Newsletter.

Pre-apprenticeship Training and Opportunities

MMSD is committed to developing and aligning skilled workers for our current and anticipated projects. In partnership with Wisconsin Regional Training Partnership (WRTP)|Building Industry Group & Skilled Trades Employment Program (Big Step), MMSD helps to recruit, train, and place local workers in the construction trades through its pre-apprentice training program. The District also places apprentice utilization requirements on many of its large construction projects to support local apprentices achieve journeyman status. To learn more about the local Milwaukee area pre-apprenticeship program in the construction trades, apply at WRTP Big Step.

Local Workforce Utilization

MMSD is committed to utilizing local workers reflective of the diversity of our service area.  To maximize the economic impact of our annual spending, local workforce requirements are typically placed on all construction bids.  On average, local workers work more than 50% of hours on all MMSD construction projects each year. For information on local Milwaukee jobs in the trades visit Wisconsin Regional Training Partnership (WRTP)|Building Industry Group & Skilled Trades Employment Program (Big Step).

National Green Infrastructure Certification Program

MMSD is a part of the National Green Infrastructure Certification Program (NGICP) developed in partnership with the Water Environment Federation (WEF) and other national utilities. NGICP provides the base-level skill set needed for entry-level workers to properly construct, inspect and maintain green stormwater infrastructure. MMSD works with local partners to set up training courses and exam dates and uses NGICP as a tool for skill development in green infrastructure and workforce development. MMSD is continuing to develop and refine the training program to fit the need of our local workforce.

Fresh Coast Ambassador Program

The Fresh Coast Ambassador Program is a partnership between MMSD, Cream City Conservation and Employ Milwaukee. The goal of the program is to introduce young adults of the 30th Street Corridor and Kinnickinnic River neighborhoods to water industry careers, watercourse issues, and green infrastructure while promoting personal and professional development. The program currently engages 6 crew members, one apprentice crew leader, two crew leaders, and one program director.

In 2020 we had a reduced crew due to COVID, but still provided the Fresh Coast Ambassador Program to 9 individuals.

Fresh Coast Ambassador Program