The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Local Business

April 5, 2014

Learn to drive a truck — for free

Partnership between Carter Express and Ivy Tech helps fill demand of trucking industry

ANDERSON — Samantha Hurley said driving a semi-truck for a living is not for everyone.

“It’s very demanding,” Hurley said. “And it is one of the most physically demanding jobs out there.”

But if you are looking to start a career in the trucking industry, she can help you get the training — for free.

“I will find the funding,” Hurley said.

Hurley is the director of driver resources for Carter Express Inc., 4020 W. 73rd St., Anderson, and said her goal is to put qualified applicants behind the wheel for her company.

That determination and willingness to provide employment opportunities is one of the reasons why Carter Express was recently named a 2013 recipient of the Ivy Tech Corporate College annual Corporate College Partner award.

Carter Express and Ivy Tech’s East Central Region have partnered to provide training through Sage Truck Driving School and employment for 287 drivers in the last four years, officials say. The partnership has secured funding for displaced and underemployed workers to pursue new careers in the transportation industry.

John Paugh, CEO and president of Carter Express, said it was nice to be recognized by the college and flattering to be honored by the school, but his company’s participation in the partnership is driven by demand.

“Our primary reasons were really selfish because we need the employees,” he said. “Nationwide, the American Trucking Associations estimates that we are short about 300,000 truck drivers. Of the 800 drivers we have, we have provided the training for a third of those.

“We are desperate to hire drivers. Not only can they be trained quickly, it is a very lucrative career with the starting salary about $40,000.”

According to the American Trucking Associations (ATA) reports, trucking continues to be a dominant mode of freight transportation and billions of tons of freight is transported across the nation each year.

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