Truck Driving Schools in Michigan
Whether you live in the upper or lower peninsula of Michigan, there are many truck driving training programs for you to choose from. In fact, there are 42 truck driving programs in Michigan. No matter where you live, it is likely that you are close to one or more programs. The average cost of tuition in Michigan is $6569, but many students end up paying less thanks to grants and scholarships. The average scholarship award in the state is $2193, which can considerably lower the cost of your education.
Discover CDL Training in Michigan
Depending on which type of driver's license you want, the length of your program may vary between four and 12 weeks. However, expect to spend about 40 hours per week in school. When you count in study time, you may want to consider not working for the duration of the program. Before you even get behind the wheel of a heavy truck, you have to complete the book work first. This includes learning about driving laws in Michigan, memorizing all the parts of a truck, and discussing the technical aspects of driving a heavy truck. The second part of your program is where you get your driving experience. You get to work one-on-one with your instructor to practice driving until you feel comfortable enough to take a driving exam.
How to Get a CDL in Michigan
Before you can begin applying for truck driving jobs in Michigan, you have to get your commercial driver's license (CDL) from the Michigan Department of State. There are two parts to this process. The first involves taking the Group A, Group B, or Group C written exam. After passing the written exam, the next step is to complete your road test. In Michigan, all road testing is done through third parties. Upon successful completion of your written exam and skills exam, you can get your CDL and begin working.
Life with a Michigan CDL
The entire country is in need of skilled truck drivers that can deliver goods for a variety of industries. This is well-documented by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. They predict a 21% increase in jobs for truck drivers between 2010 and 2020, resulting in over 330,000 new jobs throughout the decade (BLS, 2010).
One of the benefits of becoming a truck driver is how quickly you can complete a program and increase your earning potential. In Michigan, the average salary for a truck driver is $37,500 per year, according to O*Net. Most truck drivers in Michigan earn between $24,900 per year and $54,200 per year (O*Net, 2012).
There are many job openings just waiting for you in this state, whether you live in Michigan's upper peninsula or lower peninsula. The distance you drive and amount of time you spend away from home depends largely on your employer. Companies that require you to drive only within Michigan or in the Midwest may allow you to return home every week. Employers that ask you to drive cross-country, however, may only allow you to return home every month or so. Some of the biggest truck driving employers in Michigan include Premier Transportation, C.R. England, West Side Transport, and Logix Transportation.
Living in Michigan gives you a choice that you don't have to make in most other states. You have to decide whether you want to live and work in the upper peninsula or lower peninsula. For most truck drivers, this is an easy decision because most jobs are in the lower peninsula. The upper peninsula offers rugged landscapes and privacy, while the lower peninsula has most of Michigan's big cities. Main cities in Michigan include Lansing, Grand Rapids, Warren, and Detroit. The cost of living in Michigan is about 12% lower than the national average, according to Sperling's Best Places.