FAQs on Truck Driver Training and Heavy Equipment Operator Courses

Have more questions? Call us at (800) 488-7364, or email us at inforequests@nationaltrainingschools.com.

Our FAQs are grouped by type of course and in special sections for military service members and veterans, to make it simpler for you to find the answers you want to know. Please look for the category relating to your question and click on one of the listed questions to see the answer.


FAQs for Military Service Members and Veterans


(NOTE: All Service Members must seek assistance from their local Education Center to ascertain service policy.)

Are you approved for the training of veterans?

Yes, most of National’s training programs are approved for the training of veterans, including all of the Heavy Equipment Operator Programs. If you are eligible to receive GI Bill benefits, you can use them to pay for your course. For more details, visit our website page on this by clicking here.

Are you approved for the military spouse education program (MyCAA)?

Yes, most of National’s training programs are approved for the training of military spouses under the MyCAA program, including the Heavy Equipment Operators Program. If you are eligible for MyCAA benefits, you can use them to pay for your course. For more details, visit our website page on this by clicking here.

How do I enroll in an NTI course and apply for Veterans Benefits?

Individuals who want to use their VA or GI Bill entitlement must enroll in an eligible course, provide a copy of their DD-214, and complete the VA 22-1990 (Application for Education Benefits). NTI will then submit your application for benefit payment.

I am a military veteran. Am I eligible for educational benefits?

For all G.I. Bill programs, your eligible educational benefits portion must be used within 10-15 years of your official discharge date. Eligible chapters are:

  • Chapter 33: Post  9-11 GI Bill
  • Chapter 30: Montgomery GI Bill,
  • Chapter 32: VEAP

And in cases where the Veterans Administration has counseled and approved them:

  • Chapter 31: Disabled Veterans
  • Chapter 35: Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance.

Reimbursement benefit amounts vary from 55% to 100%, depending on which chapter of the GI Bill you are eligible for.

I will be separating from active duty within a year. What benefits am I eligible for?

All of National Training, Inc. programs are approved for GI Bill Educational Benefits through the VA. This includes Active Duty personnel who want to start training before they separate from the military, with either National Truck Driving School or National Training Earth Movers School.


FAQs for National Training, Inc. Truck Driving School


 

Do you have any financial assistance plans available?

Some of the school’s best graduates were people who had limited financial means. NTI offers convenient student loans. In many instances, we can direct our graduates to trucking companies that will actually reimburse your tuition costs. For more information on our financing options, click here.

How long is your course?

Depending on your qualifications and school acceptability, NTDS can have you road-ready and interviewing for jobs in as little as 4 weeks.  We have also designed two of our courses so you don’t have to quit your current job to start them!

How much do truck drivers earn?

The truck driving industry offers drivers a high starting salary with great benefits and potential for growth. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median average salary for truck drivers in May 2020 made an average of $47,130 in base pay and bonuses, with the highest paid drivers earning more than $65,260. Knowing that their business relies heavily on their drivers, transportation companies take good care of them, offering excellent benefits such as medical, vision, and dental insurance, life insurance, paid vacation and holidays, sign-on bonuses, retirement plans, and much more.

I’ve always heard you must have one or two years of experience to be hired in the truck driving industry. Is that right?

No, this is not true. While many trucking companies do not like to hire complete novices, most of them are eager to hire graduates of an accredited, established truck-driving school like National Training, Inc.  We have immediate openings with many of the top companies in the country, such as Windy Hill, Schneider, Central Refrigerated Service Inc., JBS Transport, ComCar Industries, Covenant Transport, USA Truck, US Xpress, Werner Enterprises, Wil-Trans, and many others.

What are the qualifications needed for truck drivers?

To operate in interstate commerce, a driver must be at least 21 years of age, pass a rigid physical examination every two years, and submit to testing for drug and alcohol use, including unannounced random testing. Drivers of all trucks with gross-weight ratings of more than 26,000 pounds and drivers of vehicles carrying any quantity of hazardous materials that are required to display warning signs, must obtain a “Commercial Driver’s License (CDL)” by passing rigorous tests of their knowledge of safety regulations and their ability to drive these large trucks. Drug and alcohol convictions or combinations of various serious driving violations can draw temporary or even permanent loss of driving privileges.

What are trucking companies trying to do about the shortage of drivers?

The personnel offices of the trucking industry are busy creating new innovative approaches for attracting new drivers. Those qualified to enter the industry will most likely receive a reimbursement for all tuition and training costs. Higher pay, better scheduling and, of course, ‘scouting the schools’ are also being done. These firms are starting to change schedules from the old long-haul trucker itinerary (requiring weeks away from home) to the new “relay system” where drivers are away from home for only a few nights a week.

In addition there is competition among truck manufacturers that will continue, as they all compete to produce the most luxurious truck. Naturally, these new modern, comfortable trucks will be sold to the trucking industry to help lure new drivers.

From what we have seen and heard, trucking firms are also offering special benefits, such as;

  • Home leave policies – More companies are making sure their professional truck drivers are home on weekends.   And about 80% of long-distance truckers now use up-to-date forms of communications to stay in touch, such as email, Skype, and VOIP phone calls.
  • Upgraded trucks – An example: Drivers who have worked for Star Transportation in Nashville for 10 years can pick out their own trucks, complete with accessories.
What is the outlook for trucking jobs in the future for Professional Truck Drivers?

From food, electronics, automobiles, office and medical equipment to clothing and everything in-between, truck drivers are critical in the transportation of goods nationwide. The trucking industry has more than 3.6 million commercial truck drivers and the need for quality trained individuals is steadily increasing more and more each year.


FAQs for Heavy Equipment Operator School


 

Do I have to have a driver’s license?

No.

Is there a minimum age for attending the training?

Yes, you must be at least 18 years old.

How long is the Heavy Now course?

4 weeks.

National Training Inc.’s Heavy Now course is held at our private 350-acre training facility in Green Cove Springs, Florida. The Heavy Now course is 208 hours spread out over 4 weeks of class and hands-on training.

How much does the Heavy Now Course cost?

Our current tuition and fees are listed here.

Where do I go for financial assistance?

National Training Inc. offers a variety of financial resources for financial aid in addition to our low tuition costs, regardless of your credit status. We strive to do all we can to make our financial aid programs as accessible as possible. Our Admissions Representatives will walk you through the qualifications and the types of tuition funding available to you, answering your questions along the way. Call us at (800) 488-7364 or contact us today to explore your options!

Please note that although National Training Inc. participates in many financial aid programs, we do not participate in any Federally sponsored student loan or finanical aid programs, also known as Title IV loans).

What type of equipment will I be training on?

Your training will include modern, late model:

  • Bulldozers
  • Excavators
  • Tractor/Loader-backhoes
  • Articulating loaders

National Training Inc. utilizes many and various brands and sizes of heavy equipment machines. All of this equipment is owned, leased, or rented to insure that an adequate number of properly working machines are available for students. Of course, we cannot guarantee that any one specific machine will be available due to maintenance intervals and natural equipment attrition.

Do you offer job placement assistance when I graduate?

Yes, we offer nationwide job placement assistance.

At National Training Inc. we’re committed to helping each graduate launch his future with the first job placement. Although your success is ultimately up to you, our Career Services Department has been highly successful with job placement for our graduates, which is a reflection on the quality of our students and training. We have had many graduates who received heavy equipment operator job offers even before they completed their training.

How much do Equipment Operators Earn?

Earnings for construction equipment operators vary. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median average salary for a construction heavy equipment operator in 2020 was $49,100.

What is the outlook for jobs in the future for Heavy Equipment Operators?

Terrific!

Construction is expected to continue to steadily grow. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says this is due in part because of the increased spending on the infrastructure to improve roads, bridges, water and sewer systems, and the electrical power grid. In addition to the need for heavy equipment operators to repair and upgrade our infrastructure, these workers will be needed to keep up with the need for more houses, apartments, and other building projects, due to population growth.

Construction equipment operators held 468,300 jobs in 2019 with more operators needed by 2029 to keep up with the expected growth. In addition to the NEW job opportunities, heavy equipment operators will be needed to replace those leaving the industry.

“The potential for employment in the construction industry is outstanding, to say the least. The best opportunities will be available to heavy equipment operators who have the training and ability to operate MULTIPLE types of equipment.”

Student employment prospects are greatly enhanced when the student is open to travel.

I have always heard that you must have at least a year or two of experience to be hired in the heavy equipment industry. Is this true?

No.

With the completion of a training certificate from National Training, Inc. you will be afforded opportunities from contractors to “show your stuff.” The industry needs operators to replace the ones leaving and to fill the jobs required by the overwhelming increase in construction projects across the nation. With the right mix of formal training, motivation, and integrity, no experience is required for entry-level jobs.


General FAQs


 

Is there a National Training, Inc. Heavy Equipment Operator School near me?

Conducting this type of training is not a simple process. The permits needed, licenses, environmental impact, and the enormous amount of land required to conduct this type of training, make it difficult to teach this type of training everywhere. That is probably why heavy construction operator schools are not found in most communities. In fact the National Training Heavy Equipment Operator School has invested years of time and vast legal resources into obtaining the necessary environmental permits and approvals that are mandated by the Federal Government and the State of Florida. The resident training portion is conducted in sunny North Florida at our exclusive, 350-acre training grounds.

Why is the School located in Florida?

There are many advantages to conducting our resident training in Florida. First, the weather is great most days of the year. No snow days here! Rainfall does not last long and it’s warm enough to wear shorts almost year round. This all adds up to no student training down time!

Also, we want our students to totally enjoy their training experience. This objective cannot be accomplished through work alone. A fair amount of recreation mixed with your hard work meets the enjoyment objective. Most of Florida’s greatest vacation attractions are located close by while others are a short drive from the school’s training grounds. Weekend visits to St. Augustine, the nation’s oldest city, driving on the White Sands of Daytona Beach, and visiting Cape Canaveral, Disney World Theme Parks, Universal Studios, Sea World, Silver Springs, and World Golf Village are just a small sampling of the unique to Florida experiences awaiting you. If you just enjoy simpler recreation, great fishing is just a step or two away from our front door.

Is there lodging near the school?

Yes.

National Training students receive preferred rates from several motels close to the school. Costs vary, depending on your choice of single room or doubling up with another student. We can say this, the rates you will find to be surprisingly affordable as they are structured for only our students. In addition to these motels, there are many more within a 15-mile radius of our training grounds.

Is A Career in Trucking or Heavy Equipment Right for You?

Take the National Training Inc.’s CDL/Heavy Equipment Career Training Readiness Quiz

This fun online quiz takes 3 minutes to complete and you’ll get a personalized report. Identify your strengths and social style plus the training and positions you’re best suited for.

Qualify for Employment by filling out the Q-Form Request Information Make a Payment Toll Free 1 800 488 7364