Best Company CDL Schools?

Discussion in 'Trucking Schools and CDL Training Forum' started by gclayton86, May 21, 2012.

  1. gclayton86

    gclayton86 Bobtail Member

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    May 21, 2012
    Richfield, UT
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    I've been looking at trucking companies for the last few weeks as a career change. My dad and both grandfather's drove, and I think it would be a good career for me. I don't mind solitude and I love driving.

    In my research, I've narrowed my choices down to Swift, Prime, and Central in that order. I've heard good things about Central, but $1,200 for tuition (1yr contract) seems a bit high to me. Swift costs more ($1,800) but then reimburses all that over the second year making it a net-$0 school. Prime is also a net-$0 school and to sweeten the deal (as I've been unemployed a while) they'll front the ~$400 for licenses and permits and whatnot.

    Has anyone on here actually gone through any of these schools? Can you suggest why I should/shouldn't attend? Any other schools I may not be aware of? My only criteria is that they need to hire out of Utah and the lower the upfront costs are, the better.

    Thanks in advance.
     
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  3. Paluche

    Paluche Light Load Member

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    May 15, 2009
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    My suggestion, go with Swift.

    I personally don't know anything about Prime and Central is one of those companies that pushes lease programs which I disagree with.
     
  4. Plinker

    Plinker Light Load Member

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    May 4, 2012
    Eastern NC
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    Don't know if this an option for you. Look around where you live and see if there's any community colleges that have truck driver training programs. In NC the ones at community colleges cost less than $1000 and are more respected than any other schools. As a full time student I completed the course in a month. I went Mon-Fri 8-6 and on Saturday I went for 4 hours. At least this way you have to sign no contracts granted someone could front you the money(seeing how your unemployed).
     
  5. gclayton86

    gclayton86 Bobtail Member

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    May 21, 2012
    Richfield, UT
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    Paluche: Thanks for the suggestion. I called them this morning and just filled out the app. Hopefully I'll start next Monday. The sooner the better.

    Plinker: Thanks for the suggestion. Unfortunately, I'm ineligible for grants/loans because I'm in default on a student loan and I don't know anyone that can front me the money. Going to a company school looks like my only option. Thankfully, with no rent/no car payment/basically just my food and cell phone, I can bank enough that if I can't stay with the company I'll be able to pay off the loan.
     
  6. boxxxtrucker

    boxxxtrucker Light Load Member

    I went through CRSTs contract school. Had to put 50 bucks up front as well as all permit and testing fees. Signed in to an 8 month contract but didn't fulfill the whole thing. Now I owe 4k. Not worth it.

    My second choice was Swift. Looking back I probably should have gone there. Although Im sure it wouldnt have been that much better. I don't know much about Central other than that they're like CRE with the lease ####.

    My credit situation is very similiar to yours, probably worse actually. I was unemployed for years prior to trucking. What state do you live in again? Out here they have unemployment programs (no worker left behind) that will actually pay for your private or public (Community College) trucking education up to 3500 dollars. And even if you find a school thats slightly more (say 4 grand), the program will negotiate with the school to bring you to the magic 3500 number. Most private schools will have you done in 2-4 weeks and turn you around with employment the following week. CC's take longer but you learn more and are better prepared when you start your company training. And no matter what you choose you'll have you choice of company when you do graduate (unlike being locked in with company training). I unfortuately didn't learn of this program until after I got my CDL with crst. I would never ever recommend a company school if these programs exist where you are.
     
  7. Paluche

    Paluche Light Load Member

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    May 15, 2009
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    The no worker left behind funds, which are derived from the Work Force Investment Act (WIA) funds are pretty much gone and if I am not mistaken they are now fighting to keep WIA around as it is one of the programs the government is looking to cut from the budget. I wouldn't count too much on the government and if you have a defaulted student loan, most "grant" programs are now looking at that as a criteria for approval.

    @boxxxtrucker...excuse me if I sound a bit forward, but what's your plan to pay them back?
     
  8. Cordovaxxi

    Cordovaxxi Bobtail Member

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    May 23, 2012
    Los Angeles, CA
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    I heard Prime is pretty good!!
     
  9. OpenRoadDreamer

    OpenRoadDreamer Road Train Member

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    Apr 26, 2011
    Alabama
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    For the billionth time... PRIME DOESNT PUSH LEASE!!!! Im a COMPANY driver and heard about the lease during orientation and upgrade. At no time did they try to push me into it. I went through the entire program. The training is second to none. Hands on, just you, your instructor, and the road.
     
  10. Cordovaxxi

    Cordovaxxi Bobtail Member

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    May 23, 2012
    Los Angeles, CA
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    Where is the main yard for schooling for Prime? I was at the one for Central but I could not get down the whole down shifting . It was an accelerated program with 2 weeks and only about 3-4 days of actual driving. I am located in los angeles, Ca..thanks in advance!
     
  11. OpenRoadDreamer

    OpenRoadDreamer Road Train Member

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    Apr 26, 2011
    Alabama
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    Springfield Mo, where Prime is based. Primes PSD program takes 3-4 weeks of actual out on the road doing the job training. I have a thread on the Prime board from before I started to just a few days ago. After you get your CDL youll go back out for at least 30,000 miles of team driving before you can get your own truck
     
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