Tulsa Tech helping national truck driver shortage

Posted at 6:48 PM, Nov 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-20 22:33:29-05

A nationwide shortage of truck drivers means we all pay more when we get to the store.

That's where a program at Tulsa Tech's Broken Arrow campus steps in. The program trains students over a 10 week period to become safe and reliable drivers, with a 100 percent job placement rate among graduates.

"I’ve become a better driver since learning to drive this semi, that’s for sure," said Pam Coffman, who earned her CDL license Nov. 19.

Coffman could be driving professionally within a week of earning her license.

"The program came into existence out of sheer demand," program coordinator Donnie Tulk said.

Tulk says the program sees as many as 60 drivers every year, but industry partners want him to double that number due to sheer demand. The demand is due to a driver shortage, which drives up prices on things we buy every day.

"It’s costing you and me more money at the grocery store," Tulk said, "because shipping costs are at a premium because there aren't enough drivers."

He says the lifestyle isn’t for everyone, but companies are beginning to fit their employees’ needs.

Companies will offer routes to let drivers be home as often as needed, allowing them to shape their career.


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