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RCCC offers CDL classes

AHOSKIE – Do you enjoy traveling?

Do you enjoy the thrill of the open road?

Would you like to earn a starting annual salary of $35,000?

If you answered yes to any of the aforementioned questions, then a new course at Roanoke-Chowan Community College is designed just for you.

Thanks to a $222,125 grant, RCCC will offer classes that will lead successful graduates to obtain a Class A Commercial Driver License (CDL). The grant came to RCCC through the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

RCCC will partner with Carolina Trucking Academy of Raleigh to offer the training at the college, a four-week (160 hour) program that upon completion will lead to immediate jobs.

According to A.J. Tyson Jr., Senior Dean of Workforce and Student Development at RCCC, over 200 individuals have expressed interest in enrolling in the program. However, the grant is designed to place at least 65 individuals in full-time trucking jobs.

Tyson said the training would consist of a one-week “commit” class where students will perform written work that will lead them to obtain a “road work” permit. The next week will consist of “yard work” (backing and maneuvering skills) while the final two weeks are dedicated to “over the road” work (observing and driving).

Carolina Trucking Academy will provide the initial training. Tyson said CTA officials are seeking a local instructor.

What makes the program even more attractive is the “pre-hire” aspect.

“We are working closely with trucking firms who have openings for drivers to pre-hire these students who then go through our four-week program and are road-ready when they complete the program,” Tyson said.

At Tuesday night’s RCCC Board of Trustees meeting, Tyson shared additional information concerning the CDL program. He said a limited amount of scholarship money is available through the grant. For those who qualify, the scholarships will cover all but $50 of the tuition costs. Tyson said the statewide average for tuition in this program is $3,700. The cost of the program through RCCC, without a scholarship, is $2,400. Those participating in the program are responsible for paying for drug testing, driving history, DOT physicals and the cost of obtaining a CDL license from DMV.

Anyone interested in the program is urged to attend a CDL Information Session/Job Fair beginning at 1 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 7 at RCCC’s Jernigan Auditorium.

For pre-registration information, contact Shirley Gay at 398-1307.