Wondering about Truck School and Trucking Job

by Emily
(Nashville, TN)

Due to the horrors of the economy, my husband has found himself with no choice but to go to a trucking school to become a truck driver. Although, I am not sure how I feel about it, I do support his decision 100% given that he is terribly excited about his career change and hope for providing for his family.

He has decided to go to TDI in Murfreesboro TN. They seem to have decent trucks and big space to teach driving, and have a record of good training. As most good truck driving places they state that it it will be 3 to 4 days in class, then two weeks with hands on training, 2 - 3 drivers per truck to practice. Although they do not guarantee jobs (of course no one does) they do guarantee offers. Twice we went and twice we saw recruiters there offering positions to soon to be graduates. Just in case, and because this is such a big investment I called one of their main hiring companies, Wedner (I may have spelled it wrong) number gotten from internet (not from school) and they verified that they do hire graduates a lot from that school, so it leads me to hope that they are not deceiving my husband in order to just get money out of him.

They claim that pay will be based on miles, and he will make 35 to 40k per year. Also that truck companies provide a company card to pay for expenses related to truck only such as gas, truck wash, and necesary repairs.
Does this sound normal? I was just wondering given that some people state that money comes from out of pocket from the driver then reimburse later on, and right now we are giving all we have to invest in my husband's training, so we will be very short on cash.

I was just wondering has anyone trained with this company. As I stated there most of the students we talked too claimed to have already a job offer and were starting after they attended the orientation.
I am just afraid that maybe this is too good to be true persay. But if anyone has trained with them and states that this info is accurate, then that would really bring me some piece of mind. My husband is so excited I just do not want to cause him his dream unnecesarily.

Also, what companies are good. As I stated, there students usually get hired the most by Werner, Swift, Stevens, etc. I cannot remember the other names.

And how much of a difference in pay is a over road with and without partner?
I want him to do reginal one week work 2 days off, which Werner usually does, but he is considering the 3 weeks work with 6 days off.

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Aug 01, 2009
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Thank you all for your post
by: emily

To all who have posted to my original post. Thank you. As it turned out my husband decided not to attend the trucking school at this moment. He called the school and informed them that he was having some doubts due to some discovery of miss information on their part and needed at least a week to do further research to ensure that not only is trucking the right career for him at this moment, but also that the school was as well. They acted a bit upset and tried to guilt him into attending since as they stated they pushed a lot of buttons to get him in.

We are grateful for their help, but we just felt that all bases must be covered before making such a huge commitment of $6,000 especially when we discovered that no real income would even begin to come in until after the 4 to 6 weeks of additional truck company training.

For the moment my husband has return to working in customer service while in the mean time still doing research on the best trucking school and learning more about the realities of a truckers life and career.

Thank you again all for your comments and help. This website was very informative and helped us learn that trucking life is not something you jump into, but really must love to do for the right reasons.

Hopefully in the future my husband will be a trucker he wishes to be, but it is better for it to be with full understanding and financial stability, rather than rushing and possibly financial debt.

Thank you again.

Emily

Aug 01, 2009
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Jennifer S
by: Werner

Emily,

I just recently faced the exact same situation as you. Please if you get a chance, go to the advice for you, and click on my story, it probably mirror's yours quite a bit.

I can tell you now, 40,000.00 a year is not going to happen. He will likely make closer to 25-30. It does get better with experience. Dont give up. Keiths average pay for the first 2 years was about 650.00 a week. Its not bad considering our economy.

There are a few things that I caution you with though. Regional with Werner- yea right. Even if he goes to a school on his own, he first must put in like 470 hours in the drivers seat. this is at least 30 plus days gone. Then only IF a regional position opens up he will be able to get it. Keith and I chose Werner, and that is what we went for. We found it not real profitable. And honestly, it did NOT happen as planned.

Keep your chin up, and definately keep in touch here, your welcome to email me at jenspast1991@yahoo.com

Trucking is a great career, but at this point, a lot of places are either going under, putting halts on hiring, or nickle and diming the guys to death!

Please feel free to contact me anytime you like. I am on the road right now with my husband, who now works for PGT regionally- home on the week-ends and is making double what he made at any other point in his life in trucking. So it does get better, you just have to grin and bare it!

Jen

Jul 25, 2009
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Emily's hubby gonna do it.
by: Jimmy

Emily, keep a very open mind as you venture into the trucking biz. In today's economy, $40,000 is a bit of a stretch. At least the school you mentioned is being honest about no job guarantees.

All he can do is go for it, but, be ready for surprises. In order to make more money, you and him would have to run as a team. How you/hubby manage money is a big consideration, because the checks aren't necessarily coming in at the same rate.

And it will be 3 weeks before you see a check. Don't plan on his home time as a given. Trucking is a fickle business. Good luck. Jimmy

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