Company Sponsored CDL Training & Grants for CDL School [The Ultimate Guide]
Truck driving is a high-demand industry where you can make a good living if you work hard and put forth the effort. Before you can step up into the driver’s seat, you’ll need to complete a CDL truck driver training program. While initial CDL training costs can be high, there are ways to pay for your training without going into debt or having to save up a lot of money, including federal and state grants and company-sponsored CDL training.
Getting grants for CDL school takes some work, but may not be as difficult as you think. If you’re looking to get into a new, high-demand career, getting truck driving grants or finding a company paid CDL training program can be your ticket into a thriving industry.
CDL training costs don’t run cheap. The average truck driver training program will run anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000 on average. Just because a school is more expensive doesn’t necessarily make it better, and just because a school is less expensive doesn’t make it less qualified. What matters most when determining which school to attend is how long the training program is and whether the school is accredited. Extremely short programs won’t give you the experience or education you need to get a good job after you complete your truck driver training program.
Before choosing a school, consider the following:
Your program shouldn’t just breeze you through with the goal of getting you in and out of your CDL training as quickly as possible. Truck driver training is an investment, and you want to make sure you’re getting as much out of your education as possible.
As a prospective truck driver, you probably want to know how you can get help paying for your schooling. Finding grants for CDL school or looking for a company-sponsored CDL training program are some of the best ways to keep money in your pocket while you find training for your new job. Here are some of the most common ways to cover your CDL training costs.
Federal and state financial aid aren’t only for college tuition fees, they can also be applied to truck driving schools and other job training programs. While there are certain requirements you must meet before you are eligible, they are an excellent option when it comes to covering the cost of truck driver training.
One of the best options for new drivers who want to complete their CDL training is to find a company that will sponsor you through your training. These companies require that you contract to work for them when you finish training. You also have the added benefit of knowing you will have a job when you’re fresh out of school.
Some CDL training schools allow students to finance their way through their truck driver training. This can be a good option if you don’t have a lot of money to pay for your training up front, but it doesn’t guarantee you a job when you get out.
This should always be the last option when it comes to financing your truck driver training, because even if you don’t get a job when you come out of your CDL training program, you must still cover your CDL training costs and you will have the debt to show for it.
Some carriers may pay for your education costs and pay you while you’re in your truck driver training program. Companies like Roehl offer students $500 per week while they complete their CDL training program. They also cover the cost of your CDL training so you can start a career on the right foot. Of course, you will be contractually obligated to work for the company that pays for your training and helps you get your CDL.
Most companies require at least a year commitment after you graduate, but it’s best to check with the company in advance to see how long you will be required to drive with them if they pay you for getting your CDL. If you decided to work with another company after you complete your training, or end your training early, you will be responsible to cover all of your training costs.
Different schools have their own application process, but most will allow you to apply online via the company website. An application for paid CDL training will require you to provide the following:
Know that these schools will have a requirement for you to work for the company after you get your CDL. The time period of your contract will vary with the employer you choose.
If you’re currently on unemployment, there are some great programs to help you get back into the workforce with a great career in trucking. Some programs help you pay for your education and training while still allowing you to collect unemployment so you can live and get the training you need for a new job.
One of the requirements you must meet to be eligible to keep your unemployment benefits if you return to school or get job training is that you must participate in a training program up to 26 weeks long that is approved by the Workforce Investment Act. Because truck driving is considered a high-demand job, it falls under the WIA. Most truck driving courses are between 9 to 24 weeks, making them eligible for the WIA as well.
If you are on unemployment, you may also be eligible for Federal Pell Grants to pay for your CDL training while keeping your unemployment benefits.
There are many grant options available to pay for your truck driver training program. Grants can come in the form of federal or state grants to fund your schooling. These grants can help cover the cost of your schooling, without the worry of having to pay back your funds after you complete your CDL training.
These are grants issued by the U.S. Department of Education and provide financial aid based on your financial need. They can be used for education and other training opportunities. You may still be eligible as long as you don’t already have a degree and are pursuing a program that leads to certification.
You can certainly apply for federal grants for your CDLtruck driving school education, but there may be other grants available through your state that you can apply for as well.
Aside from federal grants, there may also be state-specific grants for truck driving school to help pay for your CDL training. Different states have different resources, so it’s important to ask what options may be available in your area. Here are a few states that may have grants available to help cover the cost of truck driver training:
The good news about grants and scholarships is that you aren’t limited to applying for and receiving just one. Depending on the grant you are awarded, you may be eligible to use several grants or scholarships combined to cover the cost of your CDL training. Don’t let a lower award amount deter you from applying. It all adds up when it’s time to pay for your CDL.
If you’re a veteran, you may be eligible to use your VA education benefits toward your CDL training program costs. Check to make sure the CDL training program you choose is approved by the Department of Veteran’s Affairs.
The WIA is a federal law that helps individuals who are changing careers or have lost their jobs improve their skills in the workforce to secure better employment. Not only can the WIA grant provide you with enough money to pursue a CDL training program, but you will also be connected with a counselor who will help you create a future employment plan so you can get back on the right track.
Both state and federal grants for CDL school can help you get the skills you need while covering your educational costs. Putting in the work to find grants or scholarships that you can use will save you a lot of money down the road and help you stay out of debt while you get CDL training.
The short answer is yes. Getting financial aid to help you cover your CDL training costs is a great option for those in need of financial assistance. Federal Pell Grants, state grants, veterans benefits, the Workforce Investment Act, and financial assistance from a company-sponsored CDL training program are all wonderful ways to get financial aid for truck driving school.
Before you apply for a grant for truck driving school, you need to find a truck driving program to attend. There are many CDL training programs to choose from, so you shouldn’t have trouble finding a CDL truck driving school near your home. Once you’ve found a school you’d like to attend, you can start applying for grants.
If you’re eligible for a grant for CDL school, it can save you thousands of dollars on your educational expenses while you prepare for a career in the trucking industry.
Companies that offer paid CDL training are a great way for you to get your CDL and have a guaranteed job when you graduate. Many companies offer their own CDL programs, or they offer to pay for your CDL as long as you contract to work for them when you complete your program. Considering the average CDL training cost can be anywhere from $1,500 to $8,000, finding a company-sponsored CDL training program can save you thousands of dollars upfront.
Some companies offer better company-sponsored CDL training than others and are better to work for once you’ve graduated. Here are a few of the best CDL training companies you might consider.
This highly-successful trucking company is known for their experience hauling reefers, flatbeds, and tankers. They provide real-world, on-the-job training as well as free training if you fulfill your contract with the company.
SWIFT’s 23-month course provides you with one-on-one training with an experienced driver. You’re guaranteed a job with them once you complete your truck driver training. They do require you to pay for your own training up-front, but the company pays you back over a 26-month period as long as you are working for them. They have lower pay for new drivers but offer lots of opportunities for advancement and pay raises with experience.
This company has been around since 1988 and offers real world, one-on-one CDL training. While you get your CDL, you will learn from an experienced driver who will show you what it’s like to be on the road driving. Drivers can be paid and receive benefits during their training program.
Started in 1980, this trucking company specializes in automotive and freight transportation. They operate east of the Mississippi and have an educational CDL network. Once drivers are finished with their training, they are hired on full-time. Pam also recognizes the importance of family time and offers more time off than many other companies.
With 50 years of experience in the industry, this company is one of the best and offers an outstanding CDL training program. They don’t deduct your CDL training from your pay—it’s completely free with the company. Once you’re behind the wheel, you’ll also appreciate that this company provides compensation for loading and unloading time at the dock.
There are lots of other great company-sponsored programs such as C.R. England Trucking, Roehl Transport, Stevens Trucking, CRST, USA Truck, and more. Do a little research and find a trucking company that will give you the experience you need.
Getting grants for CDL school, finding company-sponsored CDL training, and covering your CDL training costs doesn’t have to leave you in debt. Find the right paid CDL training or apply for grants and scholarships to cover your training program, and you can start your trucking career off on the right foot.