Prairie State College Partners with KLLM Driving Academy, Inc. [08/24/2015]
Prairie State College (PSC) recently welcomed guests to an information session about the partnership between PSC and KLLM Driving Academy, Inc. Welcoming guests to the college were (from fourth from left) PSC President Dr. Terri L. Winfree; Kelly Lapetino, dean, corporate and continuing education at PSC; and Craig Schmidt, vice president, community and economic development at PSC. Among the guests and presenters for the session were (from left) JoAnne Alexander, senior director for the Village of Glenwood; Kavin James, director of the KLLM Driving Academy in partnership with PSC; Kelly Gaines, driver recruiter with KLLM Transport Services, LLC; and Kirk Blankenship, vice president of driver resources with KLLM Transport Services, LLC.
There is a critical skills shortage for drivers with a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) in the United States. Consumers will see higher costs on everyday products if the projected 330,000 new trucker jobs needed by 2020 aren't filled. If the capacity in the trucking industry is not increased overall, it could eventually slow down the economy.
To help provide a solution for this shortage, Prairie State College (PSC) recently entered in to a partnership with KLLM Driving Academy, Inc. (KLLM), to implement a collaborative effort to deliver Class A CDL training. The partnership was announced during a special meeting of the PSC Board of Trustees last month.
The agreement combines the resources of PSC and KLLM to address the needs of individual students, as well as the service and industry sectors in today’s economy. It also ensures that Illinois has an adequate supply of highly skilled truck drivers who have a CDL. The vision is to preserve the competitiveness and economic opportunity of both Illinois and our nation, in response to rapid technological change and increasing global competition.
Through support from KLLM, students in the program will receive scholarship opportunities to incur no out-of-pocket tuition costs, stipends during the training, and a six-week paid internship if they agree to one year of employment with KLLM at the conclusion of the training.
The program is designed for the 21 and older student with no commercial driving experience, and includes four weeks of school, a two-day company orientation and the six-week paid internship. Students will earn their CDL license within 4 weeks of training totaling 160 hours. Refresher training also is available for individuals who wish to renew their CDL license and obtain employment with KLLM.
“KLLM is very excited about the partnership we have created with Prairie State College. This partnership will be very beneficial in the training of individuals seeking to begin a career of being a professional truck driver,” said KLLM President and CEO Jim Richards.
“Our curriculum will provide individuals with the skill set to be successful, and in addition, upon completion at the Academy, we will also offer them employment with one of the largest, most successful Temperature Control Carriers in North America.”
“This is a fantastic opportunity for the people in the PSC community and beyond who are interested in obtaining their CDL,” said PSC President Dr. Terri L. Winfree. “Through this program, students will be supplied with a marketable skill, a valuable college and industry credential and job placement. We are pleased to be part of such a unique partnership with KLLM,” she said.
For more information, call (800) 925-KLLM or visit kllmdrivingacademy.com.