SSCC Truck Driving Academy Offers Multiple Training Locations in Ohio

trucker in front of a semi truckFor anyone who is new to the trucking industry, the main priority is to learn the trade. This involves book knowledge and behind-the-wheel skills. You can find someone to help you, and you can purchase study guides, but the best way to train fast to be a trucker is to go to trucking school. If you are in Ohio, trucking schools abound via Southern State Community College. This school has seven Truck Driving Academy locations throughout the state to make it easier for you to attend trucking school. Learn more about this training program to help you decide if this is the right method for you to advance your driving career.

Going to Trucking School in Ohio

The Southern State Community College system offers the Truck Driving Academy through the academic system. It is not through the cooperative education program like many community colleges. As a result, you can apply for student loans, including a Sallie Mae student loan, as well as WIA grants through the OhioMeansJobs office. You can also submit a FAFSA form to be eligible for federal student loans, grants, and work-study programs to help you pay for training. The school offers training at six campus locations throughout Ohio including:

  • Brown County Campus in Mt. Orab
  • Central Campus in Hillsboro
  • Fayette Campus in Washington Court House
  • North Campus in Wilmington
  • Laurel Oaks Career Campus in Wilmington
  • Ohio Strategic Training Center at South Point

These campuses allow you to gain the full experience of being a student while you get your truck driver training in a professional environment. Better yet, since the program is affiliated with a college, you can rest assured that the curriculum is highly vetted for quality control.

Time Frame for Trucker Training

At Southern State Community College, the Truck Driving Academy varies depending on the type of commercial driver’s license you are trying to get. For the Class A CDL program, the course is four to eight weeks long, and you will be required to spend at least 160 hours in training. For the Class B CDL program, your time frame is two weeks of training that encompasses 80 hours of instruction. Each of these two programs includes behind-the-wheel training, as well as hands-on training.

Once you complete the training program at the Truck Driving Academy at SSCC, you are ready to get your CDL. It will be up to you to go to the local Department of Motor Vehicles to apply for a CDL. Additionally, you will be required to get a medical exam certificate and drug/alcohol screen as required by the Department of Transportation. The trucking school and your instructor will be able to help you find the facilities, i.e., certified medical examiner and drug screen provider, in your area to meet these requirements.

Cost for Truck Driving School

To get started with truck driving school at SSCC, you will need to decide between the Class A CDL program and the Class B CDL program. Each feature a different track for studies, as well as its own price tag. For the Class A CDL program, you will need to pay $5,300, while the Class B CDL course is only $2,900.

Class A or Class B CDL

The main consideration is whether you need a Class A or Class B CDL to get trucking jobs that you want. The general consensus is that a Class A CDL is the way to go. For all over-the-road and most regional trucking jobs, you’ll have to get a Class A. Furthermore, for oversized trucking jobs and specialty hauls, such as machinery hauls or tanker loads, you’ll be required to have a Class A CDL.

If you plan on getting an endorsement for your CDL, such as the tanker, doubles/triples, or hazmat endorsements, then you’ll need to have a Class A. In reality, for most truck driver students, the Class A is the top choice. Why do drivers get a Class B? The Class B CDL is for hauling in tractor-trailers that weigh less than 26,000 pounds. This class is also permissible for truck drivers pulling straight trucks that do not have a trailer attached to an axle. If you are taking local trucking jobs or working for a parcel or moving company, then a Class B CDL is fine.

Paying for Trucking School

As this is provided via a community college, you are eligible to apply for financial assistance. If you are worried about having to get a loan to pay for trucking school, keep in mind there are plenty of trucking companies offering reimbursement programs. Several of the top-paying trucking companies like Werner Enterprises, TMC Transportation, Schneider National, and Roadmaster will reimburse you for all of your trucking school tuition expenses.

Before you apply for trucking school, take a look at these trucking companies to see what they require for trucking job applicants. For example, some companies require you to be a certain age, while other companies feature certain haul types. Tailor your trucking school training to help you meet these basic requirements by training on certain types of equipment.

Lewis and Clark Truck Driver Training Offers Driver Simulation and Tanker Training

Trucker Passing Through Construction ZoneAs you start a career in truck driving, you’ll hear a lot about truck driver training programs. This is fast becoming the preferred method for getting a commercial driver’s license as well as getting hired by a trucking company. But did you know that some truck driving schools offer specialized training? Take Lewis and Clark Community College, for example, where you can choose from a variety of training programs and classes for truckers.

Trucking School in Illinois

For those interested in trucking school in Illinois, Lewis and Clark Community College offers several pathways. Lewis and Clark is an accredited public college in Illinois that was founded in 1970. More than 12,000 students enroll in LCCC classes each year.  Today there are a couple of locations for the college including:

  • Benjamin Godfrey Campus in Godfrey, Illinois
  • O. Nelson Campus in Edwardsville, Illinois
  • National Great Rivers Confluence Campus in East Alton, Illinois

For truck driving training, the school operates out of the Bethalto Training Center located at the NGRCC in East Alton.

Types of Truck Driver Training Programs at LCCC

At LCCC, you are provided with truck driver training that will enable you to prepare for taking the CDL exam. This program is available through the Mississippi River Transportation, Distribution and Logistics Consortium. For the coursework, you can choose between:

  • Integrated truck driver with certificate of completion
  • Extended truck driver with certificate of competition

The only difference between the two programs is that the extended truck driver training includes one class of driving simulation.

Cost of Trucking School in Illinois

The tuition rate at LCCC is $120 per credit hour for in-state students, and if you are out of state, you’ll pay $480 per credit hour. There are other fees and matriculation charges that must also be covered. Fortunately, since this is a public college, you are eligible to apply for federal student aid, work grants, and scholarships. The extended truck driver training is a 19-hour program for a total tuition cost of $2,280, while integrated training is an 18-hour course for $2,160—these are in-state tuition rates.

Advanced Training Opportunities

At LCCC, you receive hazmat training as part of your curriculum, which is an advantage over other truck driver training programs. You are thereby prepared to take the CDL endorsement exam for hazmat loads. Also, the truck driving program includes truck driver orientation, FMCSA safety regulations, and a class titled Targeting the Job Market.

The school has most recently added another advanced training opportunity. You can learn how to haul with a tanker trailer, which gives you the information you need to be able to get your CDL endorsement for tanker hauling. According to Harry Nelson, the truck driver training coordinator at LCCC, “The trailer extends the capabilities of our current program to provide unique training and experience in a trucking segment that requires specialized skills in hauling liquid materials.”

Source: LCCC – Info

Getting Started at Premier Truck Driving School for C.R. England

green cr england truck on the roadChoosing a trucking school is a major step in the right direction for your truck driving career. Some schools are sponsored by trucking companies, which saves you thousands of dollars. Plus, once you graduate from these truck driver training programs, you have your foot in the door of the sponsoring company. One of the biggest trucking companies in the US has its own trucking school. Find out everything you need to know to get started with training at the C.R. England Premier Truck Driving School.

About C.R. England

Before you decide to attend the C.R. England Premier Truck Driving School, you need to know a little bit about this trucking company. After all, you’ll be contracted and obligated to drive for the company once you graduate from the school. So, you have to make sure you’re a good fit, and the company is where you want to work. C.R. England has been around since 1920 and is headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah.

C.R. England is a family-owned trucking company with four generations of Englands at the helm. The current CEO at C.R. England is Chad England, who has been working at the company since he was 14. He literally worked his way up by getting his CDL and serving as the driver manager and several other leadership roles. This means that you’d be driving for a CEO who has been behind the wheel and understands what it means to be a trucker.

C.R. England is a refrigerated carrier that focuses on frozen and cold hauls. If you drive for C.R. England, you will operate a reefer trailer that requires specialized skills. This type of trailer is a dry van or box trailer with a refrigeration unit attached to it. You are responsible for maintaining and checking the reefer unit, which must be maintained at a set temp throughout the route from pick-up to delivery. Types of refrigerated hauls include fresh produce, frozen meat, and products that must be kept from getting too hot when in transit. This could include medical products, polymers, or heat sensitive technology.

Premier Truck Driving School Locations

Now that you know what to expect when driving for C.R. England, the next step is to find a trucking school location. Premier Truck Driving Schools are located in:

  • Burns Harbor, Indiana
  • Richmond, Indiana
  • Cedar Hill, Texas
  • Fontana, California
  • Theodore, Alabama
  • Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Atlanta, Georgia

Take heed that there is also another trucking school by the name of Premier CDL Training Services, LLC. This school is located in Granite City, Freeport, Peoria, and Bradley, Illinois. Premier CDL Training is not affiliated in any way with C.R. England.

How to Sign Up

Once you choose a location where you would like to attend C.R. England Premier Truck Driving Schools, you will need to sign up. Here are the steps to take:

  • Fill out a driver application The application has four parts—contact information, personal information, motor vehicle report, and work history.
  • The school will report back to you regarding your eligibility and the nearest trucking school with openings for students.
  • If you need to travel for trucking school, you will be provided with travel and lodging paid for by C.R. England. Travel is provided by Greyhound bus and lodging is in hotels near the school or in a dorm at the Salt Lake City school.

Driver Requirements for Trucking School

To be eligible for trucking school with C.R. England, you’ll need to meet the following requirements:

  • Must be at least 21
  • Have a clean driving record
  • Have a good work history including three years of employment
  • Must pass a drug test via the DOT for your CDL, as well as pre-hiring drug testing for C.R. England
  • Must be healthy and in good condition to pass the DOT physical exam for getting a CDL
  • Must pass the road test by C.R. England
  • Must have your original Social Security card, which cannot be laminated
  • Must have an official birth certificate with raised seal or a US Passport
  • Must have your driver’s license and can include a one-year temporary license as long as it has your photo on it
  • Must not have a criminal record or must provide court documents pertaining to your case upon request

If you meet all of these requirements, then you should be able to enroll in trucking school at C.R. England. There are instances when the truck driver training classrooms are booked to the max. In this case, you’ll be placed on a waiting list or required to attend another trucking school location.

What to Expect at Trucking School

Once you arrive at trucking school and you’ve unpacked your luggage, it’s time to get to business. You are going to be in the classroom for 17 days, and this will include truck driver orientation for the company. You will learn everything you need to be able to take and successfully pass the CDL exam. However, this is not the end of your training period.

Phase I and II of Truck Driver Training

Then you enter Phase I of training, which is a one-month program during which you earn $10 per hour for an average pay of $500 per week. During this phase, you will get some behind-the-wheel time, as well as not-driving time in which you learn more about loading, maintenance, etc.

After you have completed this phase, you transfer to Phase II. This phase lasts for about a month and a half depending on your progress and how many trucking jobs are available to you in that area. You will continue driving in Phase II, until you are provided with a full-time truck driving job with C.R. England. This phase pays 28 cents per mile, which is split with a trainer you will be driving with during this time. Your average pay will be $578.

Advanced Lead and Truck Driver Trainer Positions

If you are still in Phase II after four months due to lack of opportunities, then you are placed in the Phase II Advanced Lead post. Here you will earn an extra 4 cents per mile for a total of 32 CPM, giving you an average of $753 a week.

After working in Phase II for six months, you automatically become a driver trainer, which is one of the highest paying trucking jobs in the company. Of course, in most instances, you’ll be put into the solo driving position much sooner due to the high demand for truck drivers at C.R. England.

Maverick Transportation Announces Large Pay Increase

maverick trucks on the roadMaverick Transportation LLC, named one of The National Transportation Institute’s Top Pay Carriers last year, has announced a $.05 per mile pay increase for its Flatbed and Glass OTR divisions. This pay increase is applicable to all drivers in both divisions, including student drivers.

“At Maverick Transportation, we pride ourselves on setting the industry standard when it comes to driver compensation,” says John Culp, president of Maverick Transportation. “We are constantly looking for ways we can put more money in our drivers’ pockets.”

The pay increase, which goes into effect December 18, 2017, will bring base pay for OTR flatbed drivers to $.51 – $.56 per mile, and regional OTR flatbed drivers to $.49 – $.54 per mile. Glass division drivers will now make $.55 – $.60 per mile base pay, while students will start between $.43 – $.50 per mile base pay, depending on division. Many of Maverick’s dedicated divisions will also receive pay increases. This is the second pay increase for Maverick Transportation drivers in recent months. The Arkansas-based carrier rolled out a $.04 per mile pay increase for its Temperature Control division at the end of last year.

Maverick drivers enjoy competitive pay with the ability to earn increases up to five years, a pay for performance bonus, and a driver referral bonus program. Other driver benefits include: excellent home time, weekend guarantee pay, paid orientation & training, paid weigh station bypass & tolls, 401k plan + match, company-paid life insurance, health and dental insurance options, and paid vacation. Additionally, Maverick is currently offering a $5,000 sign-on bonus for drivers with one year of verifiable experience.

To learn more about driving opportunities at Maverick visit our website or call 800-201-7695.

About Maverick Transportation LLC

Founded in 1980, based in Little Rock, Arkansas, and operating over 1,600 units, Maverick provides OTR and Dedicated service to the flatbed, glass, and temperature control transportation markets throughout North America. To learn more about Maverick Transportation visit

How to Get the Trucking Job You Really Want

Flatbed Truck Driver in DesertIn the trucking industry, there’s a lot more than just finding a trucking job. You have to choose a haul type, trucking company, region, route, and type of product you transport. It’s a lot to think about. You want to make the best decision possible, so you aren’t stuck in a cycle of constantly searching for the next best trucking job. So how do you do this? How do you find the trucking job that you really want on your first try? We’ve come up with some industry proven tips to get you on the right route to success with truck driving jobs.

Understand the Trucking Industry

Start with a solid understanding of what the trucking industry is all about. You have certain types of trucking jobs:

  • Long-haul, over-the-road trucking jobs
  • Regional trucking jobs
  • Local trucking jobs

If you select long-haul, OTR trucking jobs, these will require you to be away from home more. However, these types of jobs pay the most in the industry. Regional trucking jobs will give you more home time, as you will generally be away for two to three days at a time. Of course, the pay decreases compared to long-haul trucking. If you want to be home every night, go with local trucking jobs. Again, pay will be the least of the three, but for truck drivers with family or community commitments, the home time is more important.

Haul Types

Now consider what kind of haul type you want and will be willing to do on a daily basis. Here is a breakdown of the most common haul types and associated duties:

  • Dry van trucking loads involve closed-up box trailers and generally include no-touch, drop-and-hook freight, which means you back up to the loading dock and hook to your trailer and roll on down the road. There is less work involved in loading, and you typically do not monitor the freight while on a route.
  • Flatbed trucking loads are more tedious as these involve open-air trailers. You are required to strap down the load and to stop and check the security of your straps on a set time frame while hauling the freight. You may also have to tarp the load depending on the weather and security concerns of the shipper. If you have to tarp a load, this involves a lot of manual labor, and you’ll have to keep a check on your tarping just like you do with the strapping.
  • Reefer trucking loads use a dry van box trailer equipped with a refrigeration unit. Your main focus will be on the temperature of the trailer. You will be required to stop and check the temp at certain times throughout the haul to ensure the refrigeration system is running as needed. You will also have to keep the reefer unit filled with fuel and provide any on-the-spot maintenance and repairs as needed. Otherwise, your load could be jeopardized if the temperature fluctuates improperly. You are also required to be on the strictest of delivery schedules since your freight is perishable.

These are the three basic haul types, but as with any job, there are exceptions. For starters, you could be required to haul an oversized load within any of these three haul types. Most often, an oversized load will be on a flatbed trailer simply because of the freedom of the width and height of the load. Oversized loads are one-off; you are least likely to find a trucking company that specializes in nothing but oversized loads. While this type of trucking load pays the most, there are few of these types of loads to go around.

CDL Endorsements for Loads

After you have considered the haul types you would be best suited for, it’s time to take a gander at CDL endorsements. By getting a CDL endorsement, you increase your trucking job opportunities as well as the amount of money you can make in trucking.

For starters, the most common CDL endorsements are tank and hazardous materials endorsements. In fact, typically truckers will get both of these endorsements so they can haul the most freight. For this reason, the Department of Transportation has issued the X endorsement for a combination of tank and hazmat endorsements.

If you have an X endorsement, you can haul anything that involves a tanker trailer and hazardous materials. This includes propane/gas, chemicals, liquid foods/beverages, water for oil mining, sand for fracking, and medical waste. These types of trucking jobs pay more, but they are also more stressful. After all, when you are hauling a tanker load of fuel, you are putting yourself at risk more so than if you were hauling a dry van load of paper.

The bottom line is that as a truck driver, you can earn more money and have more job opportunities by increasing your specialization. At the same time, these types of trucking jobs can be more stressful, so it’s a balancing act in terms of what you want and what you are willing to sacrifice for a trucking career.

Hottest Trucking Jobs that are Left Sitting: Oversized Loads

blue tarp oversized loadDid you know that oversized loads are some of the best-paying trucking jobs on the market? It’s true, but these are also some of the hardest trucking hauls. As a result, oversized loads are one of the hottest trucking jobs left sitting. Here’s a trucker’s dilemma—do you take a trucking job that is easy and quick but pays less than one that requires more time and effort? This is the case with oversized trucking jobs. If you are interested in hauling oversized loads, check out these pros and cons so you can make the smartest financial trucking move for you.

Issues with Oversized Loads

An oversized truckload will almost always be put on a flatbed trailer. That is the first concern because a flatbed load will require more hands-on work throughout the trucking job. You may need to tarp and strap your load, and if so, you’ll have to stop and check your holds like clockwork. In many instances, you’ll have to physically climb up on the trailer to do so, which can be a hassle when it’s pouring down rain or burning up outside—not to mention the time it takes out of driving.

Restrictions for Oversized Truck Loads

Then you have the very nature of what constitutes an oversized truckload. This load will be either larger in width or height than a normal truckload, or it will cause your rig to weigh more than the allotted 80,000 pounds. This is why it is called an oversized load. Sometimes the load will be just an inch or two longer or a couple hundred pounds overweight. However, when you have a load that is excessively larger, it requires additional oversight.

You must follow restrictions for oversized truckloads as noted in the cities and states where you are hauling from and through. Generally, this involves getting an oversized load permit that allows you to haul the freight. It also means you can only drive during the daylight hours. When the sun sets, you are required to sit until the sun rises, which greatly cuts into your driving time. This also forces you to drive during peak traffic hours, another issue for truckers who want to get the load delivered without spending too many hours on the job. You might end up having to take four days to deliver an oversized load when a regular load would have taken you only two days.

Benefits of Taking Oversized Loads

So why take an oversized load at all? What are the benefits for truck drivers? For starters, the shipper will typically compensate you well for your time. Oversized loads automatically draw a larger fee, which is passed along to the driver. This means you might be able to make as much per day as you usually do, while only having to deal with loading docks and paperwork one time—instead of two or three times when covering multiple deliveries. For truckers who despise paperwork or who want to have shorter driving days, oversized loads are where it’s at.

When you take oversized trucking loads, you are also getting invaluable trucking experience that you won’t get with normal loads. You understand how to handle specialized truckloads and gain behind-the-wheel experience you can add to your resume. Sometimes those oversized loads are just plain cool. It’s definitely a good day when you can show your kids or grandchildren pictures of what you’re hauling, and they get excited. It gives you something to be proud of when you haul interesting freight.

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Hottest Trucking Jobs that are Left Sitting: Flatbed Trucking Jobs

flatbed semi truckDid you know that one of the hottest trucking jobs involves a flatbed trailer? That’s because this type of trucking job offers the most flexibility for shipping. With a flatbed trailer, you don’t have the size restrictions of a dry van trailer or tanker trailer. You lack the requirement of a reefer unit to keep things cool. In fact, with flatbed loads, these are typically left to the open air, with the exception of tarps. So, what is the issue with hiring truckers for flatbed loads, and why are these often overlooked in favor of dry van or tanker loads?

Job Situation for Flatbed Drivers

As a flatbed driver, you have to work harder than if you were pulling a drop-and-hook load. For starters, you have to handle tarping and strapping your load. This involves climbing on top of massive loads from heavy equipment to giant slabs of construction material. You’ve got to make like a monkey and get those straps over the load to be able to secure it to your trailer. Is there rain in the forecast? Since the flatbed load is open to the elements, you are most likely going to have to tarp it. This involves, you guessed it, a giant tarp that you have to manually wrap over the load.

Of course, with flatbed loads, the load itself is never in a perfect cube shape. You’ve got wires and planks and moving parts that can make this all very dangerous. As a result, you need to know what you are doing. A new driver or student driver just starting out in trucking will want to steer clear of flatbed trucking jobs until you gain some valuable hauling experience.

Back to those tarps and straps. Once you have everything secure, you should be all set, right? Nope, you now have to stop and check your load every so many miles or hours in order to maintain the security of the load and your compliance with the Department of Transportation. Every time you stop, it slows you down so that it takes longer to reach your destination.

Oversized Flatbed Loads

All of this effort is increased tenfold when you take oversized flatbed loads. With these loads, you are required to get an oversized load permit, and in some instances, a pilot car to escort you to your destination. Plus, you aren’t allowed to drive when it is dark outside, so your days are cut short. For most truckers, though, this is a blessing as it gives you a chance to get more rest when out on the road.

Additionally, you only have to deal with paperwork and dispatch once per load. So, while an oversized load takes you even longer to deliver, you save a lot of time trying to coordinate your route and working on bills of lading for loads. It reduces stress and pressure on truckers. Best of all, these oversized loads pay a heck of a lot more per mile due to the increased effort, so you can make more money on this type of trucking job compared to reefer hauls and tanker loads.

Pay for Flatbed Trucking Jobs

For all of your hard work, you better expect something more on the salary side, and you are in luck. Flatbed truck drivers make more money than dry van drivers. Plus, if you can pick up a few oversized flatbed loads every month, you can double your weekly pay for those hauls.

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Hottest Trucking Jobs that are Left Sitting: Oil Field Trucking Jobs

oil rig in fieldAs long as the US produces oil in the Lower 48, there will always be oil field trucking jobs. Long before North Dakota burst with oil, there was Texas and Oklahoma, which are consistently hiring truck drivers for oil field hauling. If you want to make a lot of money fast, have minimal driving experience, and are willing to get your hands dirty, then check out the pros and cons of these hot trucking jobs that are often left sitting.

Facts About Oil Field Trucking

As an oil field truck driver, you are not going to be hauling crude every day. In fact, most new truckers on oil fields start out hauling water and frac sand. These materials are mandatory for the production at an oil field, and truckers are needed to haul 24/7 as oil fields don’t have a closing time. As for where you’ll work and live, you will need to live close to the oil field as this is considered a local trucking job. So plan on accounting for your moving expenses if you are opting to relocate for this type of work.

Getting a Trucking Job on an Oil Field

Now, as for those drivers who haul for these operations, you’ll need to have certain endorsements. You will be required to have a CDL endorsement for hazardous materials and tanker loads. This is called a combination endorsement, signified by an X mark on the back of your CDL. You should also have the doubles/triples endorsement, so you can pull more than one trailer at a time. If you have the right endorsements, you can often find a trucking job on an oil field without behind-the-wheel experience.

Salary and Benefits of Being an Oil Fields Trucker

Truck drivers who take jobs on oil fields strike gold. This type of trucking job earns between $70,000 and $150,000 a year. It’s little wonder why so many truck drivers fled to the North Dakota oil fields in the previous decade to take on work. When you can earn that kind of money, there’s little reason to turn it down.

If you own your own equipment and get hired as an owner-operator, you have the potential to earn $200,000 to $250,000 annually. Just make sure you have a pneumatic blower to help keep your engine in running order in these dirty conditions.

Plus, oil fields are constantly in production. You can’t put a plug in an oil geyser, and these mining operations require 24/7 services. That’s why truck drivers for oil fields do not have to abide by the same hours of service regulations as other commercial truckers.

There are exemptions to HOS that give oil field truck drivers fewer restrictions regarding when they have to take breaks and how long they can drive per shift. This is one of the ways that these truckers can make more money than most trucking jobs; they are literally driving day and night. Of course, there are health issues, as we’ve already covered, with this type of work. Therefore, this niche of truck driving jobs tends to see the most burnout due to overwork and stress.

This goes right back full circle, though, as a huge turnover gives new truckers an easy entry into a highly profitable segment of trucking. Since companies have to have truckers to haul mining materials and oil in and out of these fields, they are more willing to pay the big bucks to keep drivers behind the wheel.

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Hottest Trucking Jobs that are Left Sitting: Team Driving Trucking Jobs

Two sleeper beds in truckIf you struggle with being lonely as a trucker, take a long look at the possibility of team driving jobs. As a team truck driver, you are partnered with someone whom you practically live with. This setup can help you overcome isolation and solitude, and it works well for extroverted truckers who hate being alone. Trucking companies love hiring team drivers because it means they can move a lot more freight, which makes everyone more money. So why aren’t more truckers becoming team drivers?

Job Expectations of Team Drivers

As a team driver, your job expectation is to keep the rig rolling constantly. When one person is driving, the other person is sleeping. You only stop for fuel, meals when not eating in the truck, and personal hygiene and bathroom purposes.

Even the Department of Transportation has nixed the 34-hour restart, which had cut into the driving time of all truckers and team drivers in particular. Now that the 34-hour break rule has been dropped, just as quick as it was started, team drivers can save time and keep trucking.

Issues with Team Driving Jobs

What team driving does to truckers, though, is that it gives them very little time to actually break free of the big rig. You end up sleeping while moving, which can be difficult for some drivers. Then there is the situation where team drivers don’t get along. This could be a possibility if you are placed with another driver via your employer.

The way to overcome the issues that go along with team driving jobs is to get to know the other person before you commit to becoming a driving team. As noted, you are living with this person and in close quarters. The last thing you want is to be miserable at both work and “home.” For this reason, most team drivers choose to work with a spouse as a partner in a team driving situation.

Annual Salary for Team Truck Drivers

That being said, as a team truck driver, you have the capacity to earn some of the best money in the trucking industry. As a team driver, you can earn an estimated $71,000. However, if you are working as a team with a spouse, then you can make a combined total of $142,000 annually. That’s an upper-middle-class income for a family of four, and it will definitely allow you to pay the bills.

Plus, there is the potential to earn a lot more. For starters, trucking companies are currently looking for team truck drivers. For an incentive, you will find sign-on bonuses exceeding $12,000 for teams. That is no chump change, and as with any sign-on bonus, this is in addition to your annual salary.

Then there is the option of becoming an owner-operator or independent contractor within a trucking company. In doing so, you can triple your income to $250,000 annually. While you will have to pay out for your tractor and trailer, you gain control over your equipment.

If you are an independent contractor, you can pick and choose trucking carriers to haul for, allowing you greater control of your income opportunities. For example, you can choose whether to haul in certain regions or for particular haul types that you know will pay you more money as a trucker.

Overall, as a team driver, you can overcome the challenge of working in this solitary environment while making big bucks thanks to constant miles.

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Hottest Trucking Jobs that are Left Sitting: Oversized Loads

Truck Driver Training at Iowa and Virginia Community Colleges

students at trucking schoolThere is one key ingredient you need to stir up a career in trucking—a commercial driver’s license. However, the Department of Transportation doesn’t just give these out to everyone. You have to pass a CDL exam that includes two portions, a written exam and a behind-the-wheel, over-the-road skills test. In order to pass these exams and get your CDL, you may want to consider going to truck driver school.

Benefits of Truck Driver Training

A truck driver training course will provide you with everything you need to pass this exam. Furthermore, with these two courses offered at community colleges, you may even be able to get financial aid to pay for your course. Check out what Southeastern Community College and Paul D. Camp Community College are offering for truck driving students.

Southeastern Community College

The Southeastern Community College is in West Burlington, Iowa, and the school also offers courses at the:

  • Keokuk Campus
  • Center for Business
  • Mount Pleasant Center
  • Fort Madison Center

For the truck driving course, this is located at the Center for Business or CBIZ in Burlington, Iowa. The commercial driving program is for individuals interested in getting a Class A CDL for truck driving. It is a 4-week program covering 160 hours of training. This includes classroom instruction along with behind-the-wheel training.

A new class kicks off each month throughout the academic year, and you will attend class from 8 am to 4:30 pm Monday to Friday for the 4-week session. Keep in mind, SCC can also offer instruction during the evenings and on weekends. Additionally, the school offers truck driver refresher training courses either part-time or full-time depending on your training needs.

SCC offers full tuition assistance in a variety of ways, such as through GAP Tuition Assistance. Contact their office at 319-208-5375 to find out more about when you can start the course. Once you graduate from the program, SCC presents you with a truck driving certificate. This certificate, along with your CDL (once you pass the CDL exam and get your license), will look great on your trucking resume as you search for truck driving jobs.

Paul D. Camp Community College

PDCCC is a community college with three physical locations:

  • Franklin, Virginia
  • Suffolk, Virginia
  • Smithfield, Virginia

The school also offers online classes for certain subjects, but not commercial truck driving. The truck driver training course is a 160-hour program that includes classroom instruction along with on-the-road training. The coursework provides you with what you’ll need to take and successfully pass the commercial driver’s license exam.

The program lasts for 4 weeks, and the cost is $4,500. However, since this is a community college, you are eligible to apply for federal student aid, scholarships, and grants. If you are former military, you can use your GI Bill benefits to cover your tuition. Call 757-569-6700 to get started with financial aid options.

Sessions for the truck driver training program at PDCCC coincide with the academic calendar. For the 2017-2018 school year, here is the schedule when courses are offered:

  • September 18 to October 13
  • October 16 to November 10
  • November 13 to December 14
  • January 2 to January 2018

If you complete truck driver training at PDCCC, you are eligible for two major benefits:

  • Lifetime truck driver refresher training, in case you take a hiatus from your trucking career and want to jump back in the driver’s seat at a later date
  • Lifetime complimentary job placement assistance to help you find a truck driving job

Applying for Truck Driver Training at PDCCC

To get into the truck driver training program, you’ll need to meet some basic requirements. You must be 18 with a valid driver’s license in Virginia and willing to provide a copy of your MVR record. You will have to complete an application for admission. Once accepted into the program, you’ll have to pass a DOT physical exam.

Going to Trucking School at a College

By attending trucking school from a local college, you will receive quality instruction under the leadership of the school board. At these accredited colleges, you will also receive official certification showing you have college-level training for trucking. Not a lot of truckers have that to bolster their trucking job application with, which puts you ahead of the competition.