Two Schools & My Dog Wants To Ride Along

Topic 2702 | Page 1

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Deb R.'s Comment
member avatar

I've been researching trucking for a few months now, been following this site, and have visited the two schools that are options for me. Does anyone have anything to say about the driving programs at either Minnesota State College-Southeast Technical (Winona, MN), or Fox Valley Technical College (Appleton, WI)?

The next step is to call companies, send out applications, and get pre-hires. I'm looking to do OTR , not really concerned about home time, would rather make as much money as possible. Any suggestions of companies that allow a driver to bring their dog along?

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.

Pre-hire:

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.

Pre-hires:

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Starcar's Comment
member avatar

Welcome to TT, Deb.

This website has a list of trucking companies that allow pets so check that out.

List of Trucking Companies That Allow Pets

Here's a link to fill out so you can apply at multiple trucking companies all at once Apply For Truck Driving Jobs

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Welcome aboard Deb!

I'm not familiar with either of those schools but tech schools are usually an awesome place to get your CDL. Their prices are usually very reasonable and the programs and put together well. So you should be able to find a nice program based on having the choice of two tech schools. We do have a series of articles on How To Choose A Truck Driving School and a chapter in our Truck Driver's Career Guide about Choosing A Truck Driving School in case you haven't gone through those already.

But the two biggies you're looking for are:

1) Get a list of major companies that hire from those schools and call a few of them from home to verify this yourself. If major companies will hire from there you know they're a legitimate contender.

2) Speak privately, away from the staff, with some of the current students and see how they feel about the schooling. Someone who just paid good money for CDL training will be more than happy to give you their opinion on it. If the current students like the training then you're in good shape there.

If major companies will hire their students and the current students are happy with their program then you've got a great school for consideration. At that point the final decision will come down to other details like equipment, class sizes, prices, etc.

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.

Deb R.'s Comment
member avatar

Thank you to both Brett and Starcar for your suggestions; this site has already helped me tremendously with all the information available. I feel that the forum posts are giving me an idea of the type of community that exists in the industry . . . but of course your members are, no doubt, the cream of the crop (chuckle)!

Chris's Comment
member avatar

I don't know anything about those schools but I highly recommend Heavy Metal Truck Driving school in Inver Grove Heights MN. It's about two hours from the Winona school you were looking at so it may be out of your range. The guys at Heavy Metal are awesome though. They are patient and great at teaching you how to drive the big rigs. Never thought I would be driving one so fast and every day we all got better and better. It's a small class and they have a lot of stations set up on the driving range for various practice. I went in not knowing a single thing about trucks and three weeks later I passed my road test the first try and got the Class A license. :)

Can't say enough about them and they also have a lot of company contacts and they will get you as many prehires as possible before you even pay them a dime. In fact they won't even accept money until you have a possible job lined up. That's how they keep up the 100% job placement for the students. Most students had at least a dozen prehires before they even started.

The cost was $3,995 when I went last year.

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.

Prehires:

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Highway Grunt0311's Comment
member avatar

Lol, I've actually turned down a lot of companys cause i couldn't bring my dog haha. depending on what you wanna do i know Melton takes new drivers and are awesome about pets. $750 deposit but you get it back after you leave if the dog doesn't chew stuff. Going to a new company to advance my Flatbed career. I got a offer from Lone Star but turned it down, no pet policy. and this new career is a rival of them. flatbed/specialized and heavy haul and allow me to bring my dog :D lol

Deb R.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm glad to hear that there are companies that will allow a dog to co-pilot! Some things I've read were leading me to think that it might not be an option.

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