CDL Program Maintains 100 Percent Employment Rate for Graduates, Prepares for Expansion
By Mike McKissack
The Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) program at College of DuPage is uncommonly successful, exhibiting a 99 percent completion rate and a 100 percent employment rate for students who have completed the program.
“This success rate speaks to the commitment and dedication of the program’s faculty and staff,” said Joan Ivory, Associate Dean of Continuing Education and Director of Business Solutions. “It is not uncommon for instructors to spend additional time with students well after class has ended, making sure they understand both the theoretical and practical elements of commercial driving. More importantly, on a daily basis, the students witness the dedication and commitment of the faculty and staff and because they care so much, it motivates students to do better.”
Now celebrating its four-year anniversary, the program has seen more than 10 percent growth in enrollment since its inception in 2011. According to Ivory, following recent upgrades to equipment and expansion of the program, even more growth in enrollment is expected in 2016.
“Within the past year, we have added one instructor and two additional vehicles,” she said. “The addition of instructional staff and vehicles has allowed us to increase class sizes, thereby enabling more students to complete the program and become gainfully employed. The CDL skills course has been revised to align with Federal and State requirements.”
She added that the curriculum undergoes an annual review to ensure it is continually in compliance with all local, state and federal laws, and rules and regulations that govern commercial driver training programs. In addition, students in the program will soon be using laptops and learning to perform electronic logging (EOBR) to record and manage hours of service.
Ivory said graduates of the program can expect to earn $45,000 or more in their first year of employment and that the CDL program at COD program serves the students and the community in a variety of ways.
“This program provides students with a wonderful opportunity to either upgrade their current employment or to move into a totally different career path,” she said. “The transportation industry has numerous options and starting a career as a truck driver can be an entryway to numerous career paths, including opportunities in dispatching, distribution and warehouse management and even accounting and human resources, just to name a few. Lastly, helping students to become gainfully employed is a tremendous service to the community because a population of tax-paying residents helps to improve local services.”
The CDL program at College of DuPage enables students to be trained, licensed and ready for employment in as little as six weeks. Featuring classroom time, hands-on over-the-road driving time and experienced instructors, the program exceeds all requirements of the Illinois Secretary of State to test for a CDL. In addition, the CDL program is on COD’s approved list for Workforce Investment Act funding, and job placement assistance is provided both during the program and after licensure.
College of DuPage
425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn IL, 60137
(630) 942-2800 (Main)
(630) 942-3000 (Student Services)
2017 College of DuPage