Swift trainee program

Discussion in 'Swift' started by Lc88, Aug 12, 2014.

  1. Broccelli

    Broccelli Medium Load Member

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    It changed last year to $9.50/hr while driving and states minimum wage while on duty not driving.
     
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  3. MsJamie

    MsJamie Road Train Member

    When I went to Academy last June, the tuition was $3900 and housing was $500, for a total of $4400.

    Tuition repayment was $75/week for 52 weeks. Housing was (I believe) $25/week for 20 weeks, so the first 20 weeks I was paying out $100/week.

    I'm being reimbursed $37.50/week for 104 weeks, provided I remain a Swift company driver.
     
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  4. chorizo992

    chorizo992 Light Load Member

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    How long is The contract you sign for The training program? & after The 6 weeks out with The trainer, youre back at The terminal & take a test, if you dont pass it. They wont hire you ,& youll still owe them The training fee(3,900$)? Or how is it? If Thats The case, i rather Pay school myself and then apply with them after.
     
  5. freightwipper

    freightwipper Road Train Member

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    $37.50! That's just about a whole week paycheck at Swift!

    :biggrin_2559:
     
  6. Lepton1

    Lepton1 Road Train Member

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    That's pretty accurate for many for their first paycheck. I remember a driver with a different company at a truckstop whining and moaning about how he'd just worked two weeks and got his first paycheck and it was only $50. He was looking at a slice of pizza and a coke and wondering how he'd live to the next week's paycheck. He didn't think about delays with accounting cutoff dates.

    After the first paycheck (mine was $70) the average take-home increases to about $350-450 during training.
     
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  7. k7tkr

    k7tkr Medium Load Member

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    You need to be self motivated, self starter for most everything involved in trucking if you're going to have a shot at survival on the road. It should start with training and never end. Ont to three years and most of you starting school today will have gone somewhere else- left the industry- no matter where you signed up. So take it seriously now and don't stop.
     
  8. MsJamie

    MsJamie Road Train Member

    Think of Academy as a trade school. You go and get your diploma (CDL), you owe them the money for the training.

    If you then sign on with Swift, you will go out with a mentor (trainer) for a specified number of driving hours. For most people, this takes 6-8 weeks. You return to the terminal, and someone from the terminal goes out for a ride with you. In my case, it was about 20 minutes, several miles of two lane road, some turns, and back the truck into the parking space. Pretty much the same drive test you had to take to get your CDL, but the "tester" is a LOT more lenient. Basically, they are making sure that you can control the truck well enough to go out by yourself.

    If you fail the check ride (it's not really a test), then you go back out with your mentor for a bit longer, then try again. It's not a "fail once and out" by any means.

    FYI, if you're out with a mentor, you've already been hired and are a Swift employee. They've already spent a bunch of money on you, so they're inclined to keep you. You pretty much have to prove that you're a bad risk...
     
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  9. chorizo992

    chorizo992 Light Load Member

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    Thank you for making everything clear to me. I will be heading to orientation this coming Monday , I was just scared to fail the test they give you after doing your 240 hours but I see that it's not that big of a deal to fail it(if you do). I am more confident about this situation now
     
  10. MsJamie

    MsJamie Road Train Member

    To be honest, most people coming out of Academy could pass the check ride without setting foot in a mentor's truck. Everyone getting their own truck has to do it; even the guy who's been driving OTR for the last twenty years.

    Don't worry about it.
     
  11. Lepton1

    Lepton1 Road Train Member

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    The training program is a little different than when I went through it last year. The total hours of behind the wheel drive time has been reduced from 240 to 200 hours. Also, when I went through the program last year we took a written test after 150 hours and the drive test after 240 hours. Now they give a written and a drive test after the 200 hours are completed.

    If you fail either the drive test or the written test after your 200 hours behind the wheel, then you will be assigned for additional hours of BTW training. Typically this will be an additional 50 hours BTW, then you will retake whichever test you failed. My first student aced his drive test, but failed the written test. He got back on the truck for another 50 hours and then took the written exam, passed and was upgraded to solo.

    Last year it was typical for a trainee to spend 6-8 weeks to get their 240 hours. It took me 6 weeks, and I felt that my trainer (mentor) wasn't focusing on getting my BTW hours done. Much of the time he elected to drive a considerable portion of the available miles on a load, and that slowed down the process of getting my hours done. Eventually I had a little "chat" with my trainer and with driver development about the issue and then I started getting some significant time BTW.

    Now that I'm a mentor I focus on getting as many BTW hours for the student as quickly as possible during the first 50 BTW (during which I'm sitting in the passenger seat). It gives the student a better idea of how they need to manage their time when running solo if they are running ALL the miles during that time. After that we take a 34 hour reset, then start running team and try to manage fairly equal hours, but I'll give more hours to the student as needed if a run is short or if we are within "striking distance" of being ready for them to test out and having balanced hours as a team is no longer an issue.

    Getting 200 hours BTW should take about 4-5 weeks. I've heard that even with the shorter hours some mentors are dragging out the process or perhaps they took some home time or aren't getting loads.
     
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