What About Night/weekend Schooling?

Topic 23502 | Page 3

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Shawn's Comment
member avatar

I went to a private school, did the 8 weekends. It took me a little extra time to get my liscense (I tested 4 times), but I got it. Then went with Werner and they gave me tuition reimbursement. I've been with them for 2 1/2 years now, 2 of those years on dollar general.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Vincent S.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks everyone! I'm still reading through and digesting all of the information you all posted, but I really am starting to come to the realization that I should probably just jump in with both feet and quit this current job to go to company sponsored school. The info that Susan and Rainy D posted really makes sense. Especially the part about how companies will pre-qualify you, before you totally commit and then later find out you don't qualify for some reason. I'm still considering Werner for the company sponsored route. The guy I was talking to says he is a team driver and is gone for about 3 days at a time. He said it wasn't long haul, so I am guessing it's regional? I don't think it's the Dollar Store account like some have warned against. I'd probably be inclined to take your advice and avoid that account to start with, although I am not afraid of a challenge, and have definitely unloaded a truck or two in the past/am in good physical condition. It's the difficult backing situations that I'd want to avoid starting out, for sure.

I went to a private school, did the 8 weekends. It took me a little extra time to get my liscense (I tested 4 times), but I got it. Then went with Werner and they gave me tuition reimbursement. I've been with them for 2 1/2 years now, 2 of those years on dollar general.

What were you doing for the first 1/2 year?

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

I went to a private school, did the 8 weekends. It took me a little extra time to get my liscense (I tested 4 times), but I got it. Then went with Werner and they gave me tuition reimbursement. I've been with them for 2 1/2 years now, 2 of those years on dollar general.

double-quotes-end.png

What were you doing for the first 1/2 year?

I was otr. I never wanted to do the dollar account but once I started doing it and got the hang of it, it wasnt that bad.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Vincent S.'s Comment
member avatar

I did exactly that. Private CDL training and took the weekend course. Which was also during the holiday/winter time. We actually missed a few days during that stretch for holidays and snow storms. So it got extended out. However I still had no problems getting my license. In fact I passed the first time out and still had two weekends to go before I finished the class, which I obviously didn't have to finish. I got what I needed. I had to take weekend courses to maintain my regular Monday thru Friday job. It may not be for everyone but I think it more depends on your level of retention. If you think you can retain the info and manuevers you learned the previous week then go for it. If not just go for the regular course.

So, I am wondering about your work options once you finished private school. Did you get more than one offer while in school? How long did they want you to be with a trainer and what was the pay like?

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.
Keith A.'s Comment
member avatar

Vincent, I went through a private school (largely because I hadn't found this site yet and believed the "free agent" myth)

As I see things, if you're gonna go into trucking, you go in with both feet and don't look back. It's not worth slowing your training and hampering your efficiency when learning to hold on to a job for a few more weeks.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Heavy C's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

I did exactly that. Private CDL training and took the weekend course. Which was also during the holiday/winter time. We actually missed a few days during that stretch for holidays and snow storms. So it got extended out. However I still had no problems getting my license. In fact I passed the first time out and still had two weekends to go before I finished the class, which I obviously didn't have to finish. I got what I needed. I had to take weekend courses to maintain my regular Monday thru Friday job. It may not be for everyone but I think it more depends on your level of retention. If you think you can retain the info and manuevers you learned the previous week then go for it. If not just go for the regular course.

double-quotes-end.png

So, I am wondering about your work options once you finished private school. Did you get more than one offer while in school? How long did they want you to be with a trainer and what was the pay like?

I got three local interviews as soon as got my license and prehire letters from a few OTR companies because of the school I went through and their affiliations with these companies. Look I get what the others are saying. And they're not wrong on most of it. But their suggested path wasn't going to be my path. I knew either I was going to make it doing it this way or I just wasn't gonna make it. Believe me I almost didn't. But here I am and I never once had to sacrifice time with my family. I won't tell you my path is the best. But it was the best for me

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.

Prehire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Vincent S.'s Comment
member avatar

I got three local interviews as soon as got my license and prehire letters from a few OTR companies because of the school I went through and their affiliations with these companies. Look I get what the others are saying. And they're not wrong on most of it. But their suggested path wasn't going to be my path. I knew either I was going to make it doing it this way or I just wasn't gonna make it. Believe me I almost didn't. But here I am and I never once had to sacrifice time with my family. I won't tell you my path is the best. But it was the best for me

I'm definitely still thinking about going this route. 4 weeks of missed work at my current job = 4000 dollars for me. That's not a negligible amount of money and it would also essentially pay for my CDL classes. Some concerns are what others have mentioned about possibly going through school and somehow not qualifying after school is done. Do you know if there a way to pre-qualify at a few companies before you enroll in school? The school I am thinking of going to is also affiliated with two of the company's who I was already leaning toward taking paid training with. Is it possible to contact/apply at those two companies and let them know I plan on going to self-paid school and I want to know if I would qualify for a job with them when schooling is complete?

I'm also wondering if it makes sense to go ahead and get my DOT physical and CLP so that is out of the way? I can't begin classes until after I leave the country in November, so I was thinking about at least getting that part out of the way now. Is there any downside to getting it now?

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.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Prehire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

If you go through a school you ha e to get the DOT physical and permit anyway. However the school.will probably give you a physical.and the company will.give you another.

some.companies like prime will.also give you an agility test and possibly a sleep study. so no....you cant qualify before going to a company. they do "prehire" qualifications, but it is minimal. and extensive background checks that dig up even expunged records are costly. they wont do it until you get there.

good luck.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Prehire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Heavy C's Comment
member avatar

Best thing you can do is reach out to any and all companies you may be interested in and talk about this with them. Each company may be different in terms of who they can hire and what training is acceptable. Either way I don't think you'll be left out in the dark without a job if you attend private school. And as far as your permit and physical your school should have that included in the tuition and your first company will likely have you renew it when you get hired.

Vincent S.'s Comment
member avatar

Alright I've taken a lot of your comments regarding the weekend training being too spread out to heart and I think I found a solution that works for me. A local community college offers a course that runs from 5:30-10:30 PM Mon-Fri for 12 weeks. I could start on their Dec 3 class and be done by late January. They claim to have a 96% job placement.

Seem like a good option? I'm assuming the night school would be much better than weekends, since it's five days a week, even though it's slightly less hours per day.

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