Choosing A School

Topic 23934 | Page 4

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G-Town's Comment
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However, if you are trying to start truck driving on a limited budget, by all means go to a company school.

Interesting. I don’t recall being destitute or financially limited when I entered Swift’s Richmond Academy. My education was free.

Although that may well be applicable to some, sure as heck isn’t the only or even best reason to go Paid CDL Training Programs route. They are fully integrated; school, road training and orientation.

That is not the best advice Bruce. You probably haven’t read any of the links we have provided (at least it seems so) It’s totally okay if your mind is made up, but a blanket statement like you posted advising others (above) is baloney.

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.
Grumpy Old Man's Comment
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Also, at least one of the companies I looked at specifically stated tuition reimbursement IF they were the company you applied to directly after school.

Big Scott (CFI Driver/Tra's Comment
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Keep the pizza shop for 5 more years, then all three kids are grown. They need you and your time until then. Even a home daily is your 10 hour break which could include your trip to work and back. How close do you live to a local company's terminal? Will they hire you right out of school? Do they offer a dock to driver training program and can you get in? You have a ton to consider before jumping into trucking. It is not free money. Good luck.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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However, if you are trying to start truck driving on a limited budget, by all means go to a company school.

Yeah, I totally agree with G-Town. I don't think you ever understood the long list of reasons why we recommend the paid programs over private schools.

One of the many considerations, and what I think is one of the most important, is that the companies offering the paid training programs are investing their money up front in you. The only way they succeed in getting a return on their investment is if you go on to be a safe and productive driver for their company. So they have a vested interest in your success. If you make a few little mistakes or you catch on a little more slowly than others it would be foolish for them to give up on you. They stand to lose a lot of money and they need good drivers to haul their freight.

Not only that, but once the private schools are done with you, you're not their problem anymore. If you're not trained properly or you fail to get very far with your career it's no problem for them. They've already made their money.

Not only that, but if you go to a private school the company that hires you has no investment in your future. If you make a couple of mistakes or catch on too slowly they can drop you and they haven't lost their investment.

So if you fail after going through a company school, the company fails with you. If you fail after going through a private school, the private school still gets their money and the company lost very little in the process.

Personally, when entering such a risky profession where so many people fail to get very far, I'd much rather have my company financially invested in my success. And because they're training me to drive for them, I know I'm going to be trained right. The private schools make their money whether you're trained well or not.

The fact that you think paid programs are for "people on a budget" shows you really don't get the big picture. If you did, you wouldn't have made a statement like that because that's only one tiny piece of the puzzle, and far from the most important one.

Grumpy Old Man's Comment
member avatar

I paid for my school, am far from destitute, though not rich. I'm not on a budget, I have money in the bank to hold me over while I am in training, etc.

BUT I still think a company paid school is a better option.

LDRSHIP's Comment
member avatar

Not to throw a log on the fire, but there is one circumstance that going to a company sponsored program would be silly. If you are former military and have education benefits remaining that you are willing to use on getting your cdl. Uncle Sam paid for my school, I got paid a housing allowance while I went to school, received a book stipend and I get paid back the money Uncle Sam spent by way of tuition reimbursement. Just saying.

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.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Not to throw a log on the fire, but there is one circumstance that going to a company sponsored program would be silly. If you are former military and have education benefits remaining that you are willing to use on getting your cdl. Uncle Sam paid for my school, I got paid a housing allowance while I went to school, received a book stipend and I get paid back the money Uncle Sam spent by way of tuition reimbursement. Just saying.

Yeah but you could have used that money to pay for a far more expensive university education instead, and the company offering the training program would have paid the housing costs anyhow. In the end the tuition is only a few thousand bucks, so it's a drop in the bucket compared to what you'll make your rookie year alone.

Starting your career with a company that invested the money up front for your training and needs you to succeed in order to get their investment back is more valuable in my book. I think having that security is a really big deal.

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.
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Errol went through Paid CDL Training with Swift. As a vet he wasn’t required to pay-back any of the cost, and no contract. It was free to him on day 1. I don’t believe Swift is the only company offering that benefit to vets.

How was Errol’s decision silly?

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.
Brian's Comment
member avatar

I think what Patrick is trying to say is it would be silly to let those benefits dry up. You have something like 10 years to use them and I've certainly heard of people never even making an attempt use it. Uncle Sam got his now the veteran needs to get there's. For the record i also didn't use mine. I saw the paid cdl program as a way to save them. For now anyways.

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.
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