Reuse, reduce, recycle. recycling workers and coordinators work to reduce waste and keep pollution out of earth’s air, water, and ground. Recycling and reclamation workers collect recyclable materials from curbside for delivery to recycling facilities. They prepare and sort materials such as metals, glass, paper, and plastics for recycling, load them onto conveyors, and load bundles onto trucks using forklifts. Some workers sort construction materials, and separate valuable metals for recycling. They may also disassemble and cut up appliances and cars with a blowtorch, and safely dispose of hazardous substances. Recycling coordinators supervise curbside and drop-off recycling programs, either for cities or private companies. They make sure that recyclable goods are moved from homes and businesses to recycling centers so that they can be reused. They also keep detailed records to track the benefits of recycling programs. Recycling coordinators also hire and train staff, and promote recycling efforts in their communities. They may negotiate to sell recyclable goods, such as paper or aluminum, to brokers and firms to reuse. Most workers in these roles need a high school diploma or equivalent. Most recycling coordinators have supervisory or management experience, and some also have an associate’s or bachelor’s degree.
What they do:
Supervise curbside and drop-off recycling programs for municipal governments or private firms.
On the job, you would:
Oversee recycling pick-up or drop-off programs to ensure compliance with community ordinances.
Maintain logs of recycling materials received or shipped to processing companies.
Supervise recycling technicians, community service workers, or other recycling operations employees or volunteers.
Education and Training
teaching and course design
Manufactured or Agricultural Goods
manufacture and distribution of products
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
talking to others
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
changing what is done based on other people's actions
understanding people's reactions
People and Technology Systems
thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one
communicate by speaking
listen and understand what people say
Ideas and Logic
use rules to solve problems
order or arrange things
People interested in this work like activities that include leading, making decisions, and business.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Electronic mail software
Enterprise resource planning ERP software
high school diploma/GED or bachelor's degree usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.
You might like a career in one of these industries: