NewsLocal News


ESL students learn new skills in trucking at JCCC

Student truck at Johnson County Community College
Posted at 8:03 AM, Mar 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-04 18:56:39-05

EDGERTON, Kan. — A unique opportunity is giving people a chance at a new career as a truck driver.

People who speak English as a second language are able to learn skills driving commercial trucks through a program at Johnson County Community College.

The college's Continuing Education Transportation program teamed up with the Johnson County Adult Education Literacy Program.

According to the school, five students from Algeria, Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala and Somalia are taking classes in the program, which is taught in English.

"I didn't have this plan before, but now I have it for my life," said Regina Stewart, a student from Brazil.

According to the school, students learn theory and hands-on driving skills during a nine-week course.

"It is so hard to me, but I'm learning," Stewart said.

Johnson County Community College spokesman Josh Smith said interest in the CDL program has increased during the pandemic.

"Two to three calls a day, most likely from people looking to get their CDL, looking for CDL training, looking for funding assistance to get their goal," Smith said.

The interest in trucking careers comes during a time when the industry is seeing driver shortages, according to the American Trucking Associations.

According to Smith, salaries in trucking can start at $50,000 with health benefits.

People interested in learning more about the college's CDL training program can go to the website.

The school said they're also looking for ESL instructors for their ESL program.

People interested in the requirements for a CDL in their state can find it for Kansas and Missouri on state websites.

Editor's Note: The name of Johnson County Community College's spokesman has been updated.