Profile For RookieJim

RookieJim's Info

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    Preparing For School

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    1 month, 4 weeks ago

RookieJim's Bio

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Posted:  1 month, 3 weeks ago

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A Veteran's Perspective on Troops Into Transportation

Before I begin, I would like to make it perfectly clear that this is NOT meant to disparage any organization, nor its effectiveness at its intended purpose... but rather it leans more toward "value for the money".

Some of this info may be obvious to some people, but maybe not especially those who haven't done any research while they are still in active duty.

Have I used Troops to Transport? Well... I tried to. I am a veteran who came to them looking for help thinking they are an outfit akin to other organizations that help connect veterans to obscure grants that we may not know about. I was wrong.

What is Troops to Transport? Well you can read their "Who We Are" mission statement here:

Ok, sounds good. But let's cut through the the smoke...

This is NOT an organization with the goal of seeking out and finding veterans in need of help and finding them funding to help them get their lives back on track. Not at all. Instead, this is an organization who, as a niche, makes it their primary source of revenue to seek out veterans with federal money to spend... and convince them to spend that money on their school (instead of some other private school). The primary target being the GI Bill.

If you are a veteran for whom the GI Bill has expired, or you've used it up, or otherwise have no access to it... their help ends there. They may suggest a link for you to check out but that's about it.

Additionally, if they find out you have no GI Bill... they will try to sell you on the notion of spending out of pocket with the rationalization that many trucking companies provide tuition reimbursement. This deal is sweetened by the "pre-hire" promise. There are many posts around about "pre-hires". In essence it is NOT a binding agreement.

What's so bad about that, you ask? Well... the out-of-pocket cost of the school is nearly $10,000. You read that right... nearly $10k.

So you have to ask... why does an organization that wants to help veterans charge nearly 3 times as much as other CDL schools with the same benefits like "pre-hires" and state-of-the-art equipment? Glad you asked...

The primary benefit, from what I can see, is the name behind it. They DO seem to have actual presence on military bases... so one might think that along with that comes the notion that "if the military trusts them... then their candidates must also be trustworthy"... which makes getting hired more likely.

That's true... if you are a soon-to-be veteran. Meaning you are still in active duty and you're soon to transition into the civilian world. Or you JUST got out. If that's the case the "credibility" under your belt isn't that you graduated from this school, but rather because you JUST got out of the military. Which means graduating from a respected school which charges less money and also accepts the GI Bill may be more beneficial. The TRUE benefit of this program is its convenience because they have locations inside actual military bases.

If you are a veteran that has been out for a while... I don't see having the name of this school behind you as having any more benefit than another respected private institution. So do your research on good schools.

If you have no other plans for your GI Bill and you don't care about the cost. More power to you. But if you plan to use your GI Bill for other vocational courses down the road... know that this program will suck out a good chunk of it.

And I really want to drive this home: This is NOT an organization designed to seek out and help veterans in need... it is an organization that seeks out veterans with federal money to spend, and convince them to spend it on their school. If you talk to them on the phone, keep your senses about you and listen for the "sell". There is DEFINITELY an element of "selling" there as opposed to "Yeah, we're here to help... let us show you what paths are available to veterans."

If you are still in active duty... you may not get that "sell" because they think you believe they are the official (and only) choice. But make no mistake... you DO have other choices of schools to spend your GI Bill on.

Posted:  1 month, 4 weeks ago

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Need advice

What did you do for 10 years to keep body and soul together?

Generally, if you were volunteering to minister overseas, or full time caring for a relative, you have a reason. The letters Steve & BK are taking about are written by people who knew you and can vouch for your good character.

You don't describe your 10 year gap at all, so I'm just putting this out there: if you were in the slammer for most of the time, be open about it and there are some companies that do give you a chance.

Cared for a relative for a few years... but the problem compounded the longer it went. I have no criminal record whatsoever. Never had any run ins with the law. Never even LOOKED AT drugs. I don't even drink. I'm literally one of those people that if you tell me to get a drug test for anything I wouldn't even care to ask what for. Just do it.

No tickets for nearly 20 years.

Criminal records... go ahead and run a full FBI check... nothing. Really squeaky clean.

From a financial standpoint I didn't have to work in the early days after leaving my previous employment... so I postponed it a bit. This was the start of this mistake that now haunts me. After that is when a relative got sick. And then COVID hit. And by the time the country opened up again... I've been out of work for so long the problem just sort of started eating its own tail.

Military record... spotless. No blemishes. Honorable discharge.

Work in the private sector... no disciplinary actions. Never been fired. Good relationship with every single job I've ever had. Every single boss I've had loved working with me. My previous manager is now a lifelong friend.

I'm by the book perhaps to a fault. If you tell me "I think it's gonna' be ok." I'll say, "No...that's not what the rules say."

I'm sure you have all heard this story before... but I really am one of those guys that if you hire me you won't have buyer's remorse.

I've never seen the inside of a jail cell.

Just can't get in the door.

Looking at other options... like TransForce (the staffing agency). They say they have a "Drive for 500"... but why haven't they filled this 500 quota yet? Seems to me it would have been "sold out" almost immediately. Sounds shady. I hope not.

Keeping my chin up... looking at all possibilities. Wanna' get my life back on track.

Posted:  1 month, 4 weeks ago

View Topic:

Need advice

Hello, new member here... trying to get some advice/perspective.

I'm trying to get into trucking, got my permit, DOT card... just need the actual CDL-A. So I targeted Schneider and Swift due to their paid training programs. Schneider got back to me and didn't have any openings, while Swift flat out declined my application due to a LONG employment gap... nearly 10 years to be exact. Swift stated they need 3 years of recent employment.

Long and short of the employment gap... had to stay home due to family medical reasons.

That said... I haven't had any tickets in the last 15 years, no drugs, no alcohol... 2 minor fender benders neither of which I was at fault (rear ended both times). Clean record. Past employment history is spotless, never been terminated, no disciplinary actions of ANY KIND. Veteran with honorable discharge.

The only blemish is that employment history gap.

Trying to see if anybody knows of any trucking companies that do not have strict policies on employment history. And what is the likelihood that I can even get into any company at this point?

Thanks in advance.

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