Prime Vs Swift Vs Millis

Topic 7913 | Page 2

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Dina D.'s Comment
member avatar

I wonder Chris, if you had a job offer or two, or three, or four ..lol! before graduation. Congrats on graduating! I've read that many people who were in the HCC CDL training program got prehired or were hired before graduation..impressive..would've been more impressive if HCC posted the percentage of graduates employed after graduation, or offered job placement. Again San Jacinto College , Lonestar, and i think i recall ATDS, made public such stats. But that's college - If I could finally get some funding from Workforce Solutions I would have gone to Lonestar (out of the three) even though HCC is the one that is PTDI certified. Funding has not come and probably won't come for quite some time..and I need to get going sometime soon (within the next three months not after three months)..and don't want to take money out of savings to pay for other expenses while at a community college..so a company based training program is logically my best bet...

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.

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.

Dina D.'s Comment
member avatar

I read that a CDL obtained from a community college or private school is widely respected or recognized by truck companies, whereas a cdl obtained from a carrier might not be...However, I think that a year or two of OTR truck driving experience would be a desired requirement of most reputable carriers....regardless of where a CDL is earned.

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.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Dina D.'s Comment
member avatar

I read that a CDL obtained from a community college or private school is widely respected or recognized by truck companies, whereas a cdl obtained from a carrier might not be...However, I think that a year or two of OTR truck driving experience would make a candidate more attractive to reputable carriers than just a CDL with no experience..even if the candidate is graduating from a reputable school. I am hoping that all of this is the "truckingtruth" and other readers probably are too.

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.

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Dina, the CDL is your state driver license. Do you mean the training certificate? That's the paper from the school that says you can be taught truck driving.

In my opinion, having the CDL and medical card will get you a job. True, schools come in different qualities.

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.
Chris the stick slinger's Comment
member avatar

I think Dina could be psychic. How did you know about my job offerwtf-2.gif

Really though, the college route is tough on your finances because it takes so long.

Work hard for something and it means that much more when you get it.

Kenny P.'s Comment
member avatar

I think there are advantages and disadvantages to the company training vs. school training. It really all comes down to the individual student and how quickly they can learn and adapt.

I went the Prime route and it didn’t work for me. I think it had a lot to do with timing and my attitude and ability to work with the trainer. I showed up at Prime a week before Thanksgiving. After the orientation, I had to wait awhile to get a trainer as a lot of drivers had routed home for the holiday. Once I got on the road with my trainer, it seemed like there was a hurry up deadline as the trainer wanted to make sure he got home for Christmas. I am an older student, semi-retired (the victim of a major corporation going out of business), who had to make a career change. The trainer, who was only a few years younger than me, took me on even though he admitted he had problems with older students. One student he had quit in the middle of a session and got dropped off at the closest airport, not before telling him to go do something to himself.

Although I could drive the truck and drove over the biggest inclines and downgrades in the western U.S., I had some troubles in a couple of areas that I couldn’t seem to grasp. The trainer, although a really good guy when not in the cab, beat me up mentally. It was brutal. After about a week on the road with this guy, I was wishing I had gone the community college route.

After two weeks on the road I came back and met with Stan, who was mentioned here in an earlier post. Stan recommended I go the community college or truck school route.

My roommate I met on the first day of the Prime training barely passed the CDL permit test. I showed up with my instruction permit, passing the test in my home state before heading to Missouri. He made it through his training fine, and he went there with no money in his pocket. I went out there with some backup money. So maybe he was more motivated than I was, who knows.

Another student who was in my group passed her CDL with Prime but left the company and is paying back the fee. Her issue was Prime not being able to find her a female trainer and she also didn’t like the overall training.

So I guess it’s all about the individual. There’s not clear cut answer or formula as what works for each person. Everyone is different. I came home, got my old pizza job back and I am enrolling in my local community college training program. I got financing through Sallie Mae, the government backed student loan program. My local course cost about $2600, takes eight weeks and offers plenty of training behind the wheel. I think I will come out a lot better trained this way than I would if I had hung out at Prime through the holidays. But that’s just me talking.

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.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Dina D.'s Comment
member avatar

Yes, Errol V., I meant the permit/training certificate...I believe it's the one that a person should get before obtaining a CDL- A.

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.
Dina D.'s Comment
member avatar

I hear you Chris! I would rather not withdraw any money out of my savings for the program..But, I if it comes to being absolutely necessary...then I will have to do what I must do.

Dina D.'s Comment
member avatar

Thank you Kenny P. for sharing your experience and observations! I think that life can teach us more than a book, or a list of facts on a website can! What you said speaks volumes!!! I would just select any school and "go for it" if I had more to fall back on. I just have a gut feeling that I need to be more careful with how I invest my money this time around. Also, I know that everyone's perspective on things can be different. There were a ton of posts on prime or millis vs this or that on trucking truth...but very few people have actually matriculated at one of the schools' and had something to say about it...that is...except for you and maybe a handful of others. I am glad that you are determined to get your CDL and realize that timing was an issue and that maybe it was not the best time to enroll then, but that there may be a more opportune time to earn you CDL either now or in the future. There is a season for everything and each day brings forth new opportunities..I don't know why, but for some reason my gut tells me to go to the institution that offers the most thorough/best quality training (carrier or college) , rather than go to the one that offers the most pay, but not necessarily the best training.

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.
Dina D.'s Comment
member avatar

But still a stronger gut feeling is telling me to spend as little as possible to get the CDL...just in case! ; D

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.
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