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Become a Master Composter

SB 1383 was enacted to reduce landfill disposal of organic waste, which in turn, reduces greenhouse gas emissions. Become a Master Composter volunteer and help your community make the change happen! 

Who are Master Composter Volunteers?

  • Master Composters come from all walks of life.

  • They share composting best practices that promote healthy gardens, healthy soil, and healthy lives.

  • They complete a core 15 week course taught by University Faculty, Extension Educators and Industry Leaders.

  • Upon completing the course, they contribute their time teaching research-based composting practices in their communities. 

  • Important dates and deadlines

    • We offer training every 2 years. The Master Composter Class of 2022 just graduated in June. Please return here next year for more information about the 2024 Master Composter training program. 

Steps to becoming a UCCE Master Composter 

1. Complete the Application

  • Complete and submit the online application. 
  • Wait for a UCCE Staff member to contact you regarding your application.
  • You will need to complete a background check if you are accepted. 
  • Once you receive notice that your background check has cleared, you will receive information about the training course. 

2. Complete the Extension Master Composter training course. 

  • Complete the 48+ hour training course (1 to 2 times a week for 15 weeks) to become a certified Master Composter  
  • The course lectures will be held online (contingent on Santa Clara County COVID-19 guidelines) every Thursday evening.
  • We will also have a few in-person informational demonstration training days and field trips
  • Taught by University of California Extension educators, faculty and Industry Specialists.
  • All students must complete an online final exam for certification. An active email and reliable Internet access is required 

3. Share your knowledge. 

  • During your first year as a volunteer, you will be required to give 50 hours of service on projects and events that deliver basic compost education and information to the local community. 
  • Attend Continuing Education courses and monthly meetings alongside experienced Master Composter Volunteers.
  • Report your volunteer hours online for Reappointment.

4. Celebrate! 

When your training is completed, you will receive a certificate and celebrate your completion. After your first year and 50 hours of service are completed, you will receive a UC name badge and the Master Composter title.

5. Stay involved. 

To maintain your active Master Composter volunteer status, you will need to complete at least 25 hours of volunteer time and 12 hours of continuing education per year thereafter. 

Want to volunteer with us, but can not commit to the Master Composter Training Course? Volunteer at our Community Composting Demonstration Site! 

The Compost Education Program offers volunteer opportunities to the community every 3rd Saturday of the month. If you are interested in visiting or volunteering at our Community Composting Demonstration Site at Martial Cottle Park, please let us know HERE

Someone from the Composting Education Program will contact you as soon as we are able to. A reminder will be sent out the week before with details of what is happening at the next workday.