Is Community College Training A Bad Idea?

Topic 20813 | Page 4

Page 4 of 4 Previous Page Go To Page:
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
For just over $4000 (paid in full by GAP)

Yeah, I guess if someone else is going to pay your way it's an appealing opportunity. But would have you paid for it out of your own pocket?

GAP Tuition Assistance Program

This program was established to provide funding to community colleges for need-based tuition assistance to applicants to enable completion of continuing education certificate training programs for in-demand occupations.

Eligibility for tuition assistance under this program shall be based on financial need. Criteria to be assessed in determining financial need shall include but is not limited to:

  • The applicant's family income for the six months prior to the date of application.
  • The applicant's family size.
  • The applicant's county of residence.

An applicant must also have a demonstrated capacity to achieve the following outcomes:

  • The ability to complete an eligible certificate program.
  • The ability to enter a postsecondary certificate, diploma, or degree program for credit.
  • The ability to gain full-time employment.
  • The ability to maintain full-time employment over time.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Thomas C.'s Comment
member avatar

I am not an experienced driver in any way, however I have done 20 years in the Navy and one of the reasons Trucking is going to be my next career is because in many ways it is just like learning in the Military. When you Enlist in any branch you go to boot camp and then to your School for what ever job you are going to do and you learn the basics. Then you go to your first command and that is where you are going to learn how to do your job and it can take months and years before you are proficient and a reliable worker. I have been in for 20 years and at the top as far as my Job goes with knowledge and responsibilities but still learn something new everyday.

I believe that is how you have to approach Trucking. It really doesn’t matter if you go the School vs Company route. You are new and need the experience of those that have done this job for years and it doesn’t matter if you are 21 or 60 you need to be a sponge learning everything you can until you are the best at what you do and establish yourself and like anything the more dedicated you are the more dedicated your Company (Military) will be for you. God Bless and stay safe out there.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Thomas says:

When you Enlist in any branch you go to boot camp and then to your School for what ever job you are going to do and you learn the basics. Then you go to your first command and that is where you are going to learn how to do your job and it can take months and years before you are proficient and a reliable worker.

This is true. (My experience is 4 years, long ago, USAF) But there's a difference. Military, with OJT, provides a network of support throughout your career to minimize the chance of your failure.

Trucking, though, puts you alone in your truck for 98% of your career. (School ➡ orientation ➡ road training ➡ on your own) If you don't "get it" before you get your truck, life can be hard.

Also, starting in most schools, it's on you to pay attention and learn. Out on the backing range there's always a group of students shooting the breeze instead of watching the others practice. These are the ones who will probably drop out in less than a year. Don't be one of the people.

C T.'s Comment
member avatar

Just got the chance to read this sub. I went the "free agent" route that has been mentioned. Like chaos, I got a similar deal with my schooling. I was blessed to get a grant that paid for everything. This allowed me to work nights while going to classes full time. There are pros and cons on both sides no doubt. I was able to go with a company (Maverick) that doesn't run their own school. Although I had no obligation to stay here, I've still been here going on 2 years now. With under a year experience, not a whole lot of companies worth jumping to anyway. Are a few more cents per mile worth starting all over again? Not in my opinion, and any company that pays way above average probably wants experience anyway. So in all, I'd say you can't go wrong either way.

Parrothead66's Comment
member avatar

I did the local training school that also happens to coordinate with the loca Jr College. $3500 out of pocket. It’s a smaller training school but I feel they have some quality driver trainers, both with many years experience. With that said they teach you to pass the CDL exam and then hopefully you choose a good company that will do more direct otj training. My company (as well as quite a few others) offer tuition reimbursement but unfortunately I chose to go with a small drilling company at first. To get the reimbursement you have to come directly out of school so I missed that boat. I agree that free agent term is misrepresented here. That company is giving you 3-$6,000 in some cases depending on where you live. That contract is in lieu of you being on the hook for that $$. Not a bad trade off in the overall scheme of things. Especially if you don’t have the up front $$$ as is the case for a lot of folks getting started.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

I too did the scholarship/community college thing because the $4k cost wasn't coming out of my own pocket, allowed me to continue working part time plus while I attended CDL school, and kept me home a little longer, since I actually still had 2 teenagers at home.

My son was 18 and my youngest was about to turn 16. Not having to pay for school out of my to own savings , I was able to get bills paid up 2 months in advance and was able to leave my 18 year old a $1k emergency fund. I expected to be gone 5 weeks. One week for company orientation in Iowa and four weeks of OTR training.

To check on my kids, I had an adult neighbor, a close friend, and a local pastor and his wife who would drop in randomly and unannounced (they all had keys lol) to make sure they weren't having the ultimate house party. Of course they were behaving responsibly, but kids will be kids so I was very careful about all the arrangements before I ever headed to Iowa.

I was able to start with a company that hires new drivers, but wasn't large enough to have their own school. My company doesn't offer tuition reimbursement, but I didn't pay it myself anyway so that didn't matter to me.

Had I have not had the cash provided to me (scholarship) to attend that community college program, I would have jumped at the chance to go to Prime, Swift, or wherever. I don't recommend using your own savings when so many fine companies have their own schools who guarantee you'll have a job after you finish. With a private school, you're pretty much on your own to find a job after you get your CDL-A. Yes they say they'll help with placement, but that "help" is often non existent or useless. I found and researched West Side Transport from a job link from this very forum. Nobody from my school knew where they were going or how to find a job. I did my research and 3 of us went there. I'm the only one still there. One didn't like OTR and another one was fired and now drives for Celadon/Osborne. I think they should have done their own research, but out of fear, they followed me and ended up somewhere they didn't fit well.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Carter M.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey I’m also currently in a community college program because it was 350$ Dollars which is much less than any other I’ve seen. I didn’t know about company sponsored training before I enrolled but it’s a 16 week program and I’m 10 weeks into it so I might as well stick It out. By the time I’m done I’ll have closer to 220 hours of training. Including 10 driving trips that are two hours each. I’m glad I chose this route even though it’s taking much longer that every other program I’ve seen because I’m not sure I could learn everything in four weeks. The problem I’ve ran into is no companies will talk to me yet because I’m still more than a month out from my graduation date. The other problem is picking which company and what type of driving I want to do. I’ve looked at a lot of the resources up here and they’ve been very helpful.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Page 4 of 4 Previous Page Go To Page:

New Reply:

New! Check out our help videos for a better understanding of our forum features

Bold
Italic
Underline
Quote
Photo
Link
Smiley
Links On TruckingTruth


example: TruckingTruth Homepage



example: http://www.truckingtruth.com
Submit
Cancel

Need help? We have instructions for sharing photos from photo sharing sites



example: http://www.truckingtruth.com/images/header.jpg
Submit
Cancel

Click on any of the buttons below to insert a link to that section of TruckingTruth:

Getting Started In Trucking High Road Training Program Company-Sponsored Training Programs Apply For Company-Sponsored Training Truck Driver's Career Guide Choosing A School Choosing A Company Truck Driving Schools Truck Driving Jobs Apply For Truck Driving Jobs DOT Physical Drug Testing Items To Pack Pre-Hire Letters CDL Practice Tests Trucking Company Reviews Brett's Book Leasing A Truck Pre-Trip Inspection Learn The Logbook Rules Sleep Apnea
Done
Done

0 characters so far - 5,500 maximum allowed.
Submit Preview

Preview:

Submit
Cancel

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More