Truck Driving Schools in South Dakota
Starting your truck driving career in South Dakota is easy with the two excellent truck driving schools located in the state. The programs are located on opposite sides of the state, which means that they are able to reach a greater number of students. Once you start your program, you can complete the classwork portion. This involves learning about trucks, how to drive them safely, and South Dakota driving laws. Once you have finished the classroom portion of your driving program, you finally get to get behind the wheel of a large truck and learn how to drive. This part of the program is done one-on-one with an instructor, in order to give you the freedom to ask questions and get plenty of practice.
Earning Your CDL in South Dakota
The cost of the truck driving program in South Dakota varies depending on which school you attend and how much financial aid you get. Most truck driving programs are eligible for federal financial aid, which means that you can use grants and loans to offset the cost of your education. The length of your program depends on which school you go to, but you can expect to spend between four and eight weeks in your truck driving school.
In order to work as a truck driver in South Dakota, you need to be licensed by the Division of Motor Vehicles. There are two parts to getting your CDL. The first step is completing a written exam. After you pass that, you can take your road test. Once you have passed both exams, you can get your CDL from the Division of Motor Vehicles.
Life with a CDL South Dakota
Job outlook for truck drivers is strong across the country, according to O*Net. Job growth across the country is expected to increase by 21% between 2010 and 2020 (O*Net, 2010). In South Dakota, job growth is expected to increase by about 9% in the same timeframe (O*Net, 2010).
The salary you earn as a truck driver in South Dakota depends on many factors, including your experience, where you work, and seniority. The median salary for truck drivers in the state is $34,100 per year (O*Net, 2012). The given range of salaries goes from $25,700 per year to $50,900 per year (O*Net, 2012).
After working so hard to earn your CDL, it is time to start your truck driving job search. There are two types of driving jobs that you may come across in your job search: in-state and interstate. Because of South Dakota's mostly rural layout, you may be able to find in-state driving jobs that allow you to return home every evening. Interstate driving jobs may keep you in the area around your state, or they may require you to drive across the country. Some of the largest truck driving employers in South Dakota include Gannett Co, Saia LTL Freight, Viessman Trucking, and West Side Transport.
Truck drivers that want to enjoy the peace and quiet of a mostly rural state can look to South Dakota. There are some large cities in South Dakota, including Sioux Falls and Rapid City, but most of South Dakota is covered by small towns and villages. Some of the most popular areas to live in South Dakota are the suburbs immediately outside of Sioux Falls and Rapid City. One of the main benefits of living in South Dakota is the very low cost of living. According to Sperling's Best Places, the cost of living in South Dakota is 8% lower than the national average. There are many attractions in South Dakota, including Mount Rushmore, the Badlands, and Custer State National Park.