Citizens Water Academy

Class dates for 2019 announced below. The application and nomination period for the Spring 2019 Citizens Water Academy class is now open.

The award-winning Citizens Water Academy is an opportunity for future and emerging leaders in the San Diego region to learn about critical projects and programs related to water. 

Through the academy, the Water Authority is expanding and sustaining a diverse network of influencers who are willing to serve as outreach ambassadors on water issues and refer others to future academy classes.

The selection process is competitive and acceptance is not guaranteed. The Water Authority typically receives many more applications than spots available. 


The application and nomination period for the Spring 2019 class is now open. Dates and times for that as well as other classes are available below. Dates and times for the Fall 2019 class will be posted below after they are finalized.

Spring 2019 Class

  • Thursday, Mar. 7, 2019; 5 to 8:30 p.m. (Balboa Park/San Diego)
  • Wednesday, Mar. 13; 5 to 8:30 p.m. (Kearny Mesa/San Diego)
  • Saturday, Mar. 23; 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Escondido)

Summer 2019 Class (for public agency employees)

  • Wednesday, July 10, 2019; 1 to 4:30 p.m. (Kearny Mesa/San Diego)
  • Wednesday, July 17, 2019; 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Escondido)

Fall 2019 Class (East County - October)

  • Wednesday, October 9, 2019; 1 to 4:30 p.m. (El Cajon)
  • Wednesday, October 16, 2019; 1 to 4:30 p.m. (El Cajon)
  • Friday, October 25, 2019; 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Escondido)

Participants MUST commit to attend each session and tour.

There is no tuition, fee, or charge to apply or attend the academy; however, there may be a reportable value, as food, beverages and other items will be provided.


The nomination period for the Spring 2019 class is open. Please click here to nominate a community leader for the spring class. Nominations will be accepted through Monday, Feb. 4, 2019.


The application period for the Spring 2019 class is open. Please click here to apply to participate in the Spring 2019 class. Applications will be accepted through Monday, Feb. 11, 2019.
If you want to add your name to the interest list to be notified when dates for the Fall 2019 class are announced, click here.
If you have any questions about the program or application or nomination process, email us at

Participant Testimonials and Photo Gallery

Fall 2018 Class Photo

Fall 2018 Citizens Water Academy participants on top of Olivenhain Dam


“The presentations and discussions were great. We talked about real time situations and problems that are being dealt with today."

"It's impressive to meet and hear the material from the people who actually run the show."

"I plan to ensure folks understand how critical water conservation and education are."



The Water Authority received a Silver Bernays Mark of Excellence Award for the Citizens Water Academy from the San Diego/Imperial Counties Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America at its annual gala on October 20, 2015. The award was given for Community Relations - Non-profit/Government/Association.


The program also received a Communications Initiative Award from the San Diego Section of the American Planning Association at its annual awards event on May 5, 2016.





News Coverage

Next City - Sept. 4, 2015
San Diego Union-Tribune - Aug. 13, 2015
Ramona Sentinel - Feb. 12, 2015
San Diego Union-Tribune - Nov. 7, 2014 

Frequently Asked Questions

Click here for answers to frequently asked questions.