Letter From my Student
by American Trucker
Hey, you want the trucking truth? I'll give it to you straight up why I choose to attend Great Lakes Truck Driving School.
After researching and interviewing different truck driving schools I found that each one had a little something more to offer than the last one did.
Due to the fact of my current situation of going through a divorce, between living arrangements and jobless, I came to resting my decision on attending Great Lakes Truck Driving School for many factors.
I needed a fresh start to a new life within making this never easy choice to a change from what my norm once was. I was put through intense and vigorous studying to achieve a passing level to obtain my W.I.A grant from Ashland Co. to attend a truck driving school.
Once achieved and the green light was a go. One thing I did right off the bat was call & set up an interview with Michael Nease your admissions representative. During this interview I found that Great Lakes Truck Driving School had more to offer than any others I had called upon or researched.
Great Lakes offered housing during the given course off time that their students would be enrolled and attend school there in Columbia Station, Ohio. Due to the fact of my current situation of going through a divorce, between living arrangements and jobless, I needed a break.
During this interview I found that the environment was peaceful, welcoming and friendly. Of course this is Mikes job to have all that enters into his door feel this comfort but I wasn't an easy sell, it was going to take a bit more than just a smooth presentation of the company, a nice smile and an offer of a hot cup of coffee.
Smile... I had a task and that was to find a school that I could get the most out of in the least amount of time so my new life and adventures to the open road could begin. For the price of obtaining my CDL education at any other Truck Driving School I got two courses for the price of one at Great Lakes compared to any others around. The School worked out and makes arrangement for students to live near by that don't have the means to transport themselves from a distance daily. For those that can offers extending help in fuel cost to those that travel daily. This was just a few of the surprises I heard about during the interview with Mike.
Mike asked me if I was interested in Operating Heavy Equipment and of course the Tom Boy in me said OH YA! smile He said the funds are there from W.I.A if you are interested and it didn't take me but a minute to decide. For obligations in getting the W.I.A grant I had to interview two instructors, two drivers and two students.
Steve Golas was one of the CDL instructors I had interviewed that day. I knew right off the git go he was a hoot and told it like it was, good, bad or ugly. A true trait I hold myself! smile. There was no sugar coating it when he described his days on the road. He said "It's not always easy living in tight cramped confined space and being away from your family for weeks at a time."
I already knew going into this it was going to be a major life change for me but from my previous year I had already hurdled this for me is inviting. I understand and accept that being out on the road especially as a single woman it's going to be a gigantic culture shock.
Long roads never seeming to come to an end, endless nights without proper rest. Lack of good nutritional food & not to mention the occasional circus act or scum bag I may run across. It's not a life for everyone and I'm sure someday I will say I have had enough and want to stay local.
However, now... this is a dream come true for me.
From day one Great Lakes has far surpassed anything I ever imagined in gaining from attending school there. The CONFIDENCE I started gaining in my first class with CDL Instructor Jerry Gay. I learned a lot and on a personal note I think more instructors should apply their life's lessons in class. Sure you need the book work & pass the test as the state requires but when it's all said and done I will remember more about the living facts of the stories Jerry told about his years out on the road. His class was the beginning of me coming out of my shell.
Besides CONFIDENCE the other reality I was revealing to others I didn't see at first about myself that I had gain from attending your school is COURAGE! One morning I walked into your office Carl & you were talking to Cooper our Heavy Equipment Instructor. The very two men I needed to see & talk to that morning. I was struggling in Heavy Equipment class. The reading and testing just the first week alone was horrendous and I worried daily about maintaining and keeping fresh on my mind what I had learned in CDL, for I was to return to the yard at a later date with a new group of guys and didn't want to be the one left out in the cold cause I forgotten what I had already learned.
So my thought was to drop out of H.E. and return to CDL but Cooper wouldn't let me. He gave me repeated pep talks in trying to get me to stop over analyzing every little thing. I didn't want to fail but dropping out of his class would have been just that!
Coop pushed me to continues & even though I got stressed out, ticked off & blew my top once or twice he showed me patients in working with me. In time I gained the COURAGE in myself to where I'm not afraid now to push my abilities to their limit & work hard & in trying something new.
Last but not least my in the yard time. WOW..... Wish I could do it all over again! All the great instructors I had, rain or shine they stood out there couching us and listening to each one of us 'cry & moan' who about something. MEN were the worst! lol Seeing I was the only woman I had more fun busting these babies balls every chance I could. I put my two cents in there from time to time and gave them encouraging words also.
It was important to show STRENGTH in the yard cause there were many times, I know I was being watched. And it wasn't just due to my hair blowing in the wind putting it nicely but the performance on the Heavy Equipment or abilities in the tractor was being viewed and I was under intense scrutiny in my abilities being tested.
This was not just kicks and giggles for me, this was and is truly keys that all your instructors have given me in opening those doors to my new life. This past year before I ever thought of attending school to obtain my CDL & Heavy Equipment Certifications was a life truly sad and I just wanted to stop living but now..........I look forward to getting up and knowing soon I will be out on the highway to heaven & what I make out of it is up to me!
Looking forward and excited as hell about my new career choices. I will never forget my time at Great Lakes Truck Driving School and I will forever hold those that went beyond and above their call of duty in showing me their love & support and in helping me reach my goals and dreams.
I've learned you are never too old to set goals and have dreams. I DID IT at 45yrs old!
Many thanks to the ENTIRE staff at Great Lakes Truck Driving School...."
Much Love, Peace & Good Health be with you all
P.S. Where's my bright yella shirt so I can be a free walking bill board for ya all! smile
P.S.S HUGE THANKS TO DORIS FOR PROVIDING A WONDERFUL LEARNING FACILITY WITH A GREAT STAFF!