CDL Truck Driver Schools near Robinson IL 62454

How to Select a Truck Driver School near Robinson Illinois

Robinson IL CDL truck driving schoolCongratulations on your decision to become a trucker and enroll in a CDL school near Robinson IL. Perhaps it has always been your dream to hit the open road while operating a big ole tractor trailer. Or perhaps you have done some research and have discovered that a career as a truck driver provides good wages and flexible job opportunities. No matter what your reason is, it’s essential to receive the appropriate training by enrolling in the right CDL school in your area. When evaluating your options, there are a number of factors that you’ll want to consider before making your final selection. Location will undoubtedly be important, especially if you have to commute from your Robinson home. The expense will also be of importance, but selecting a school based entirely on price is not the optimal way to make certain you’ll obtain the appropriate education. Just remember, your goal is to learn the knowledge and skills that will enable you to pass the CDL examinations and become a professional truck driver. So keeping that target in mind, just how do you pick a truck driving school? That is what we are going to discuss in the rest of this article. But first, we are going to talk a little bit about which CDL license you will eventually need.

Which Commercial Drivers License Should You Get?

tractor trailer in Robinson ILIn order to operate commercial vehicles legally in Illinois and within the United States, an operator must obtain a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). The 3 license classes that a person can qualify for are Class A, Class B and Class C. Since the topic of this article is how to select a truck driver school near Robinson IL, we will discuss Class A and B licenses. What differentiates each class of CDL is the kind of vehicle that the driver can operate together with the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating). Below are brief summaries for the two classes.

Class A CDL. A Class A Commercial Drivers License is needed to operate any vehicle that has a GCWR of more than 26,000 lbs., including a towed vehicle of greater than 10,000 lbs. A few of the vehicles that drivers may be able to operate with Class A licenses are:

  • Interstate or Intrastate Tractor Trailers
  • Trucks with Double or Triple Trailers
  • Tanker Trucks
  • Livestock Carriers
  • Class B and Class C Vehicles

Class B CDL. A Class B CDL is required to operate single vehicles having a GVWR of greater than 26,000 lbs., or a GCWR of more than 26,000 lbs. including a towed vehicle weighing up to 10,000 lbs. Some of the vehicles that operators may be qualified to drive with Class B licenses are:

  • Tractor Trailers
  • Dump Trucks
  • Cement Mixers
  • Large Buses
  • Class C Vehicles

Both Class A and Class B Commercial Drivers Licenses may also need endorsements to drive certain kinds of vehicles, such as school or passenger buses. And a Class A license holder, with the appropriate required endorsements, may drive any vehicle that a Class B license holder is authorized to operate.

How to Evaluate a CDL School

Robinson IL tractor truckAs soon as you have decided which CDL you would like to obtain, you can begin the process of evaluating the Robinson IL truck driving schools that you are considering. As already mentioned, cost and location will no doubt be your primary considerations. But it can’t be stressed enough that they should not be your sole concerns. Other factors, including the reputations of the schools or the experience of the instructors are equally if not more important. So following are several more things that you should research while conducting your due diligence before selecting, and particularly paying for, your truck driving training.

Are the Schools Accredited or Certified ? Very few Robinson IL truck driving schools are accredited due to the demanding process and cost to the schools. However, certification is more typical and is provided by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). A school is not required to become certified, but there are several advantages. Prospective students know that the training will be of the highest quality, and that they will receive plenty of driving time. For example, PTDI requires 44 hours of real driving time, not simulations or ride-alongs. So if a school’s program is certified (the program, not the school is certified), students know that the curriculum and training will fulfill the very high standards set by PTDI.

How Long in Business? One indicator to help assess the quality of a truck driving school is how long it has been in operation. A poorly reviewed or a fly by night school usually will not stay in business very long, so longevity is a plus. Having said that, even the top Robinson IL schools had to begin from their first day of training, so use it as one of multiple qualifiers. You can also ask what the school’s history is concerning successful licensing and job placement of its graduates. If a school won’t provide those numbers, search elsewhere. The schools should additionally have associations with local and national trucking firms. Having numerous contacts not only affirms a quality reputation within the industry, but also boosts their job placement program for students. It also wouldn’t hurt to get in touch with the Illinois licensing authority to confirm that the CDL trucking schools you are considering are in good standing.

How Effective is the Training? At a minimum, the schools should be licensed in Illinois and hire teachers that are experienced and trained. We will cover more about the teachers in the following section. Also, the student to instructor ratio should not be higher than 4 to 1. If it’s any higher, then students will not be getting the individual attention they will need. This is particularly true regarding the one-on-one instruction for behind the wheel training. And be critical of any school that professes it can train you to drive trucks in a relatively short time frame. Learning to be an operator and to drive a tractor trailer skillfully takes time. The majority of Robinson IL schools offer training programs that range from 3 weeks to as long as two months, based on the class of license or type of vehicle.

How Experienced are the Instructors? As already stated, it’s imperative that the teachers are trained to teach driving methods and experienced as both instructors and drivers. Even though a number of states have minimum driving time criteria to be certified as a teacher, the more professional driving experience a teacher has the better. It’s also important that the teachers stay current with industry advancements or any new laws or changes in regulations. Assessing instructors may be a little more subjective than other criteria, and possibly the best method is to visit the Robinson IL school and talk to the teachers face to face. You can also speak with a few of the students completing the training and find out if they are happy with the level of instruction and the teacher’s qualification to train them.

Enough Driving Time? Most importantly, an excellent truck driver school will furnish sufficient driving time to its students. After all, isn’t that what it’s all about? Driving time is the actual time spent behind the wheel operating a truck. While the use of ride-a-longs with other students and simulators are important training tools, they are no replacement for real driving. The more instruction that a student receives behind the wheel, the better driver he or she will be. Although driving time varies between schools, a good standard is a minimum of 32 hours. If the school is PTDI certified, it will provide no less than 44 hours of driving time. Check with the Robinson IL schools you are considering and find out how much driving time they furnish.

Are they Independent or Captive ? You can receive free or discounted training from some Robinson IL trucking schools if you enter into an agreement to be a driver for a specified carrier for a defined period of time. This is called contract training, and the schools that offer it are called captives. So rather than maintaining affiliations with many different trucking lines that they can refer their students to, captives only refer to one company. The benefit is receiving less expensive or even free training by giving up the flexibility to initially work wherever you choose. Clearly contract training has the potential to limit your income opportunities when starting out. But for some it may be the only way to get affordable training. Just remember to ask if the schools you are considering are independent or captive so that you can make an informed decision.

Provide Onsite CDL Testing? There are some states that will permit third party CDL testing onsite of truck driving schools for its graduates. If onsite testing is allowed in Illinois, ask if the Robinson IL schools you are reviewing are DMV certified to provide it. One advantage is that it is more convenient than contending with graduates of competing schools for test times at Illinois testing centers. It is also an indicator that the DMV views the authorized schools to be of a higher quality.

Are the Classes Accessible? As earlier noted, truck driver training is just 1 to 2 months in length. With such a short term, it’s important that the Robinson IL school you choose offers flexibility for both the curriculum and the scheduling of classes. For example, if you’re having a hard time learning a certain driving maneuver, then the instructor should be prepared to commit more time with you until you are proficient. And if you’re still holding a job while going to training, then the class scheduling must be flexible enough to fit in working hours or other commitments.

Is Job Assistance Offered? As soon as you have acquired your CDL license after graduating from truck driver school, you will be keen to start your new career in Robinson IL. Verify that the schools you are considering have job placement programs. Find out what their job placement ratio is and what average salary their graduates start at. Also, ask which local and national trucking firms their graduates are referred to for employment. If a school has a lower job placement rate or few employers hiring their grads, it may be a clue to look elsewhere.

Is Financial Assistance Provided? Trucking schools are comparable to colleges and other vocational or trade schools when it comes to loans and other forms of financial assistance being offered. Find out if the schools you are evaluating have a financial aid department, or at least someone who can help you understand the options and forms that need to be submitted in Robinson IL.

Why Did You Decide to Be a Trucker?

When prepping to interview for a Trucking job, it's important to consider questions you may be asked. Among the things that interviewers often ask truck driving applicants is "What drove you to choose trucking as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not only the personal reasons you might have for becoming a trucking operator, but additionally what attributes and abilities you possess that make you exceptional at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining primarily to trucking, along with a certain number of general interview questions, so you must ready a number of strategies about how you want to address them. Considering there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an excellent truck driver and the leading choice for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but take down a few ideas and anecdotes that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.

Select the Ideal CDL School Robinson IL

tanker truck driving in {Robinson ILChoosing the appropriate truck driver school is a critical first step to launching your new profession as a long distance or local truck driver. The skills taught at school will be those that forge a new career behind the wheel. There are many options available and understanding them is critical to a new driver’s success. Most importantly, you must get the proper training in order to drive a large commercial vehicle in a safe and professional manner. If you are lacking cash or financing, you may need to think about a captive school. You will pay a reduced or even no tuition in exchange for driving for their contracted carrier. Or you can choose an independent school and have the option of driving for the trucking company of your choosing, or one of several associated with the school. It’s your decision. But regardless of how you receive your training, you will soon be part of an industry that helps our country move as a professional trucker in Robinson IL.

A Bit About Robinson Illinois

Robinson, Illinois

Robinson is located in the center of Crawford County at 39°0′22″N 87°44′20″W / 39.00611°N 87.73889°W / 39.00611; -87.73889 (39.006185, −87.738778).[5]Illinois Route 33 passes through the center of the city as Main Street, leading east 7 miles (11 km) to Palestine near the Indiana border and west 24 miles (39 km) to Newton.

According to the 2010 census, Robinson has a total area of 4.803 square miles (12.44 km2), of which 4.74 square miles (12.28 km2) (or 98.69%) is land and 0.063 square miles (0.16 km2) (or 1.31%) is water.[6]

At the 2000 census,[8] there were 6,822 people, 2,927 households and 1,835 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,881.9 per square mile (725.6/km²). There were 3,376 housing units at an average density of 931.3 per square mile (359.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.98% White, 1.16% African American, 0.41% Native American, 0.63% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.66% from other races, and 1.14% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.73% of the population.

There were 2,927 households of which 29.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.1% were married couples living together, 11.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.3% were non-families. 32.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.27 and the average family size was 2.87.

 

 

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