In-person Training Returns with CREF’s Compost Operations Training Course, Beginning with Lincoln

Published August 31, 2021

36 students from 9 states and 2 foreign countries gathered in Lincoln, Nebraska for the first COTC since November of 2019. “We are honored and excited to partner with the Foundation for the return of in-person training,” commented Heather Creevan, Executive Director of the Nebraska Recycling Council, one of the USCC’s newest state chapters. She continues, “this was planned for summer of 2020, and we are very grateful to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln for hosting this excellent training.”

As is typical, the class was a mix of large, medium and small scale operations, both public and private, both experienced operators and newbies, which made for great questions and discussions. UNL stepped up by providing 9 different feedstocks for the recipe-building activity, a new record! The field trip included the biosolids composting at Beatrice, leaf and yard waste at the City of Lincoln, and source-separated organics at Soil Dynamics in Ashland. The latter also included dueling screening demonstrations by sponsors Komptech and Vermeer—a great educational opportunity.

“I can’t tell you how excited Matt Cotton and I were to be delivering this training in person again,” exclaimed Cary Oshins, course leader and Education Director for CREF. “Plus, we have not done that many COTCs in the Midwest,” he remarked, “and this gave us an opportunity to recruit several new outstanding lecturers from the region.” New speakers included Dave Gavlick from St. Louis Composting on Equipment, Jeff Phillips from SCS on stormwater, Rob Ferris from A&L Midwest on compost analysis, and Aaron Hird from the NRCS on compost and soil health.

The CREF has several more COTCs lined up:
· Raleigh, NC, Sept 13-17 (waitlist available)
· Ft Collins, CO Nov 8-12
· Santa Rosa, CA Mar 21-25, 2022
· Future locations will include New Jersey, Michigan and Florida.

Go to to find course details and registration links.