Enrolled in Continental, Dallas, Texas
by, 08.02.2011 at 02.15 AM (350 Views)
Today, August 1, 2011 I enrolled in Continental Truck Driver Training & Education in south Dallas, Texas. (www.cdlcareers.net)
Roadmaster in San Antonio told me the industry minimum is 160 hours of training. Continental provides 200 hours over 4 weeks. They are NOT accredited. But they say that they have a near 94% job placement rating and lifetime job placement assistance. They are running a special this month so my total tuition and housing only ran $2,700.
They showed me where the apartment is but didn't have the key to let me in. (The guy that cleans the apartment had it.) It's in DeSoto, only about 10 minutes away.
The building is much smaller than I anticipated. I had envisioned a large facility. It was actually very compact.
Everyone I met was very friendly and helpful. I met Rafiki the recruiter, Brooke the job placement advisor, Tish the admissions agent (all female) and Ray (?) the class teacher.
I guess I expected something more grand overall; like colleges have mountains of paperwork, etc. Not here. I filled out an application and gave them my money (sort of.) They do not accept personal checks. So I gave them my debit card. I forgot there's a daily limit; so I'll have to contact the bank to lift the limit so they can process it. Or they told me to mail them a money order.
The only materials they said to bring was a notebook and pen and a DMV issued CDL handbook, which I already have.
Earlier on I thought I could do this on my own. So I got the book and have already passed my written tests. I have received my driving permit. That's one less thing I'll have to worry myself with at school. No need to take the tests again. They told me; however, that there's so much more to learn than what's in that book. There's DOT regs, log books, etc that is always growing with the government. Yay on that.
Also, I have a few faux pas' in my legal background stemming from my time as an idiot teen. They told me they would like some detailed info on that. When job recruiters look into my background, that's bound to come up. Brooke will know the story and how best to play it down. Fortunately for me that information is so old; we're talking near 20 years ago and I've played well with others ever since.
My wife is very nervouse about all this. She fears I'll miss out on a lot of the kid's lives. God willing I won't. She's coming around. She's made friends with a lady from church who's married to a trucker and is being coached along the way. That's been a bit of relief.
A lot lately I've been in contact with an old co-worker who has been driving for several years. He started out with Steven's Transport by going through their sponsored training. He called BS on that and dropped them pretty quick and moved on.
He now does "drive-aways," where he delivers brand new, off the assembly line trucks to the customer. He hauls a few at a time piggy-backed. He says he may be able to get me on with him as an independent contractor. He says he makes a pretty fair living and can work when he wants and be home when he wants. He misses some things of his kids; but is there for the most part, and the important occassions.
And truth is, with any job you can't always make everything.
Man, I'm so excited I can't sleep. It's after 2 a.m. I laid in bed for a bit, but couldn't get my brain into neutral.
Signing out for now! Adieu!