Great salary and the freedom of the open road
There are many great things about driving a truck for a living, such as the freedom of the open road and the chance to see the country.
“I have the best job,” Karen Grandorf said. “When Ron drives, I get to appreciate all the beautiful views throughout the U.S.”
Karen and her husband, Ron Grandorf, who work as team drivers for Secured Land Transport, are recent graduates of Pima Community College’s Truck Driver Training program.
“The fact that my wife and I are together is the best,” Ron said. “We love being able to spend time together and travel the country.”
After working in the banking industry for 20-plus years, the Grandorfs were tired of the stress and wanted a change of scenery.
“Our decision to turn to trucking as a second career was a life-changing event,” Karen said. “We get to travel to new places and get paid for it.”
At first, Karen, who stands just under 5-foot tall and weighs little more than 100 pounds, was a bit hesitant about getting behind the wheel of a big rig.
“I was insecure because of my small stature,” Karen said. “I didn’t think I could do it, but with the support and encouragement I received from my instructors, I got over my fears.
“Pima’s program offers the perfect amount of classroom and over-the-road training instruction. It’s exactly what you need to drive a truck safely,” she said.”
“Carriers want trained drivers who understand the importance of safety,” said Missy Blair, Pima’s Truck Driver Training program manager. “There is always a place for safe, effective drivers in the industry.”
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, job opportunities are favorable for long-haul truck drivers with the proper training and a clean driving record. In addition, numerous job openings will occur as experienced drivers retire from this occupation or leave the labor force all together.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 5 percent job growth in truck driving through 2024. As the economy grows, the demand for goods will increase and more truck drivers will be needed to keep supply chains moving.
“We love the freedom of hitting the open road,” Karen said. “The biggest stress we have is deciding which satellite radio station we are going to listen to.”
For more information, to attend an information session, take a tour or enroll in the program, contact 520-206-2744.
- Jamila Caamaño
Pima’s Truck Driver Training Program Offers
- 4- or 10-week schedules
- Day and weekend training schedules
- Instructors with experience in the industry
- Hands-on, over-the-road training
- Small classes, individualized attention
- Career placement assistance
- On-site CDL testing
- Two options: Class A Commercial Driver License and Class B Commercial Driver License with Passenger Endorsement
Other occupations that require CDL training
After you’ve gained some over-the-road truck driving experience, your career options grow and you can branch out into other jobs beyond OTR driving. A few options are:
- Self-Employed Truck Driver
- Bus Driver
- Truck Driver Training Instructor
- Cement and Concrete Production Driver
- Local/Regional Driver
- Terminal Manager
- Specialty Cargo Hauler
- Delivery Driver