Are you looking for a career that offers independence? Want to manage your schedule and possibly work for yourself? If this sounds good, becoming a truck driver may be the right career path for you. To become a truck driver, you must obtain a Class A CDL. However, before you take the exam, completing CDL training from a truck driving academy is helpful.
What is the CDL Class A License?
A Class A commercial driver license (CDL) allows the license holder to drive a commercial vehicle in excess of 26,001 pounds, provided that the gross vehicle weight rating of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds. Class A is a universal license allowing someone to drive multiple commercial vehicles and tractor-trailers. Whether it is an 18-wheeler, bus, or other large commercial vehicle, you must obtain a Class A CDL to drive legally and safely on our streets and highways.
Steps to Launching Your Trucking Career with OBC’s CDL Training
There are a few steps involved in launching your trucking career. These steps include:
Step #1: Complete OBC’s CDL Training
In as little as 4 weeks (8 weeks for weekends), you can complete a CDL training certificate program at OBC. Our Class A CDL Truck Driving school, offered at our Dayton and Columbus, Ohio campuses, combines applied textbook knowledge with valuable time behind the wheel to ensure you’re ready to drive Ohio’s roadways.
At our truck driving school, you will learn the essential skills to operate a semi-trailer safely and professionally. Training helps you become well-versed in performing the necessary inspections before operation. Everything you learn will be geared toward passing the Class A CDL certification exam.
Step #2: Pass CDL Exam
After completing OBC’s CDL training, we will allow you to use a vehicle to take the CDL exam. This CDL certification exam will include a knowledge test and a skills test. The knowledge test is required for each vehicle class, for each endorsement, and to remove the air brake restriction. The skills test consists of a 30-minute pre-trip inspection test, a 40-minute basic maneuverability test, and a road test.
Step #3: Start a Trucking Career
Let OBC help you find a trucking job with the help of our career services. After you graduate and pass the CDL exam, we will help you find a job as a truck driver. Our career services staff can help you prepare for interviews. We even have strong ties with the community and may hear about truck driving opportunities even before the public.
Why Become a Truck Driver?
There are many benefits to becoming a truck driver. They include:
A Quick Start
At OBC, you can become a truck driver after completing a 4-week Class A CDL certification program. This program offers the required hours behind an 18-wheeler and prepares you for the Class A CDL certification exam.
When you are behind the wheel, you are on the open road. No 9-to-5 or micro-managing supervisors telling you what to do. Driving a big rig offers independence; it is just you and the open road. Whether you work for a trucking company or start a business, you can choose your routes, the places you see, and the schedules you want to work.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of truck drivers will grow 4 percent every year through 2032. Since truck drivers are in demand, becoming a truck driver is a stable job that offers growth opportunities throughout your truck driving career.
Did you know that 72% of freight in the US is transported by truck, according to the American Trucking Association (ATA)? There is a need for an additional 80,000 truck drivers, which will reach 160,000 new truck drivers by 2030. The ATA projects that the industry will need to hire over 1 million truck drivers in the next decade to replace the retiring drivers, those who have left for a different career, and the additional drivers needed to satisfy additional demand.
Own a Trucking Company
Upon completion of training and with some work experience, many truck drivers become owner-operators and start their businesses. Owner-operators can choose the freight they carry and can set their schedule. As an owner-operator, you have some options:
Hauling Independently – involves using a semi to transport goods scheduled with specific companies. You are in complete control over your business. Good insurance on the truck is crucial in preventing unavoidable expenses while on the road.
Working for Hire – companies rely on truck drivers with valid CDL licenses to drive their products and goods between warehouses and retailers. This is a work-for-hire position, as you may work for one or more companies. Work-for-hire is more stable than hauling independently, as you sign a contract outlining payment and insurance for the company while trucking.
Building Your Own Fleet – you can create your own fleet and work independently or for one or more companies. Fleet management software can help you keep track of your drivers while on the road to ensure that they are sticking to their schedule and delivering the items properly.
Options to Obtain a Big Rig
You can choose between different options to obtain a big rig. They include:
Lease – is ideal for those wanting to avoid owning a big rig. You sign a contract for two or more years that states you are the sole owner of the vehicle until the lease is up.
Lease-to-Own – a financing option that involves leasing out a semi-truck and then eventually becoming the owner. The money put towards the lease helps pay the cost of the truck.
Loans – use the truck as security, allowing you to make monthly payments towards the value of the big rig. This is great for drivers who want to own the truck but may need more money to purchase it outright.
Most truck drivers can drive thousands of hours per week across different cities throughout the United States. Hit the open road and go through towns throughout the U.S. and see the country firsthand.
Where Do Graduates of OBC Work?
Ohio Business College’s Truck Driving Academy regularly hosts recruiters from carriers across Ohio. Our graduates have gone on to work for some of the largest carriers in the country. As a graduate of our truck driving program, you will also be able to take advantage of our connections in the industry. Some of the carriers that graduates work with include:
- Maverick Transportation
- NTB Trucking
- Sewell Motor Express
- PAM Transportation
- Total Transportation & Distribution
- BST Trucking
- TMC Transportation
- Pachall Truck Lines, Inc.
- Stevens Transport
- Home Run Inc.
- McElroy Truck Lines
- S. Express
- Averitt Transportation & Logistics
- Schneider National
- Hogan Trucking
- PGT Logistics
- May Trucking Company
- One World Logistics and Freight Ltd
- Werner Enterprises
What are the Benefits of Attending OBC’s Truck Driving Academy?
There are many benefits to attending the Truck Driving Academy at Ohio Business College. They include:
Training in 4 Weeks
If you have 4 weeks to train becoming a truck driver, OBC has the right truck driving program. During this training, you learn the fundamentals of truck driving, safety, and communication to succeed as a truck driver.
Learn the Rules of the Road
Students learn about the rules, regulations, and traffic laws they must abide by on and off the road. Commercial drivers must abide by these rules. These rules include required home time, maximum hours of drive time, electronic logging device rules, drug testing, licensing requirements, and proper protocol for securing cargo.
Behind the Wheel Experience
At OBC, you get many hours of driving practice in every environment you encounter. From city traffic to the open road, you will learn how to travel streets and highways to keep everyone on the road safe.
Use of an OBC Big Rig
Don’t own a big rig yet? OBC will loan you a big rig so you can complete your Class A CDL license driving exam.
Are you ready for a career with independence? Ready to get your Class A CDL to start driving big rigs? If you are ready to train for a trucking career, OBC can help. Take the first step toward a rewarding career, and OBC will be with you every step of the way.
Want to Learn More?
If you are ready to take to the open road, hauling inventory across the state of Ohio and potentially the rest of the United States, the CDL certificate programs at Ohio Business College’s Truck Driving Academy is the perfect place to start. With Ohio locations in Dayton and Columbus, our Truck Driving Academy offers one of the most respected Class A CDL certificate programs in the Tri-State region.
If you are interested in a truck driving position, let Ohio Business College answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to learn more about our Truck Driving programs.