Central Texas College (CTC) was recently awarded funds through the Texas Reskilling and Upskilling through Education (TRUE) Grant program which enables the school’s Continuing Education program to offer scholarships. Qualified students can obtain a Class A or Class B CDL license at the completion of the 210-hour, four-week course.

The truck driving program includes 40 hours of classroom instruction and 170 hours of practical and behind-the-wheel training. Students can enroll in either the Class A, Class (Automatic) or the Class B commercial driver’s license program. A Class A license authorizes an individual to drive a single vehicle with 26,001 pounds or more, semi-trucks or any Class B or C vehicle. The Class A (automatic) program can be completed in two weeks (120 hours). Students only learn how to drive an automatic truck. This licensure authorizes drivers to operate a single vehicle with 26,001 pounds or more, a single vehicle such as a tow truck or dump truck, a bus with a seating capacity of 24 passengers or more including the driver and any Class C vehicle.

The Class B CDL is the second heaviest weight class, with commercial motor vehicles weighing more than 26,001 pounds and trailers weighing less than 10,000 pounds. A Class B CDL gives drivers more opportunities for local and flexible truck driving jobs in areas like construction, shipping and public transit. It is also a two-week program.

“There are currently 3.5 million commercial drivers averaging a yearly salary of $45,000,” said Rahsaan Dawson, CTC dean of service area, adult and workforce education. “In the next 10 years, the American Trucking Association projects a need for 80,000 new drivers per year due largely in part to industry growth and retirement of current truck drivers. Our program, has an approximate 95 percent job placement and potentially a higher than average starting salary of $65,000 with benefits.”

In addition to the new scholarship opportunities provided by the TRUE Grant, students can apply for Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Scholarships which are designed to provide education and training opportunities in high demand occupations and to increase employment, earnings and job retention for program participants.

Interested persons must live in Texas, fill out the registration form with CTC and then complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application. For more information on scholarship qualifications, the truck driving program and class start dates, contact CTC at 254-526-1586.