MOUNT STERLING (WGEM) – Dot Transportation recently launched a truck driver training school at the Mount Sterling headquarters, where learner drivers can obtain their Class A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) at no cost while getting paid .
Dot Transportation officials say many people interested in becoming a truck driver cannot take time off work to attend truck driving school. So, this way, trainees can get paid while learning and not have to worry about finances.
A traditional school would typically have drivers ready to roll within 16-18 weeks. However, at Dot, it accelerated in 12 weeks.
“Existing truck driver programs are very busy with the new law that has been implemented where everyone has to go through a CDL class. So the timing worked out and it made sense for us to go ahead and open our own school. said Duskee Kassing, director of operations for Dot at Mount Sterling.
Kassing said drivers enrolled in Dot Truck Driving School will commit to working for Dot for two years.
One of the first students to go through the truck driving school, Pierre Graham, said he was just weeks away from independently driving a truck across the country.
“There are a lot of things you need to know,” Graham said. “And the training is there so why not take advantage of it, so it’s an 8 week process before they release you if they feel comfortable releasing you.”
Graham has been with Dot since 2010 and works in the frozen food warehouse. He will now be on the other side making food deliveries.
“When I took the step to be a driver, you know, I thought I was helping the economy to provide food for drivers at a decent time,” Graham said.
Kassing said Monday morning was the start of the fourth truck driving course with four students enrolled. Class size is limited to six.
“There are a lot of people who are interested in driving a truck,” Kassing said. “But are just unable to walk away from their current job and go without a paycheck while taking this course.”
Kassing said with a new class starting each month, they hope to recruit dozens of new pilots in the coming months.
“Trucking companies need to continue to work through this shortage of supply and demand,” Kassing said. “And we think it’s a great way to continue to grow our fleet.”
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