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Why it's a great time to become a truck driver

Posted at 4:30 AM, Jun 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-04 09:03:26-04

CINCINNATI -- "Everything in this country gets where it's going by truck," former trucker driver John Bohning said.

Although demand for goods shipped by truck has increased in the last several years as more American consumers trade the shopping mall for the convenience of the one-click purchase, the number of drivers qualified to drive those trucks hasn't risen to match. It might not be up to snuff for the traditional market.

According to the American Trucking Association, the United States workforce is short about 50,000 truck drivers. 

That shortage, along with rising diesel prices and some new federal trucking safety regulations, means the price of transporting goods is higher for both suppliers and consumers. 

There's a flip-side, however, for those interested in joining the field: The high demand for labor means driver pay, long stagnant, is on the rise. Bohning wants his students at Butler Tech to reap the benefits.

"Almost every company that comes through to talk to our students has increased pay," he said. "Percentages, some have gone up as much as 3 or 5 percent."

Bohning teaches five-week classes at Butler Tech for people interested in earning the commercial driver's license that would allow them to begin trucking. According to him, about 93 percent of students who complete the course and earn their CDL have a job in the field within six months.

Intriguing, right? Paola, who we all know possesses the gruff, proud, beardy bearing of a Rockwellian truck driver, considered a career change when she heard. 

Watch the video above to see how that went. Spoiler: She still works at WCPO.