Career and Education Opportunities for Truck Drivers in Minneapolis, Minnesota
Many educational and employment opportunities exist for truck drivers in the Minneapolis, Minnesota area. There are currently 35,700 jobs for truck drivers in Minnesota and this is projected to grow by 8% to about 38,440 jobs by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for truck drivers are expected to grow by about 12.9%. Truck drivers generally drive a tractor-trailer combination or a truck with a capacity of at least 26,000 GVW, to transport and deliver goods, livestock, or materials in liquid, loose, or packaged form.
Truck drivers earn approximately $18 hourly or $38,090 annually on average in Minnesota. Nationally they average about $17 hourly or $37,270 per year. Earnings for truck drivers are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Freight in Minnesota and better than general Freight category earnings nationally.
There are eighty schools of higher education in the Minneapolis area, including one within twenty-five miles of Minneapolis where you can get a degree to start your career as a truck driver. Given that the most common education level for truck drivers is a high school diploma or GED, it will take only a short time to learn to be a truck driver if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Truck Driver
In general, truck drivers drive a tractor-trailer combination or a truck with a capacity of at least 26,000 GVW, to transport and deliver goods, livestock, or materials in liquid, loose, or packaged form. They also may be required to unload truck.
Truck drivers check vehicles to insure that mechanical and emergency equipment is in good working order. They also report vehicle defects or damage to the vehicles. Equally important, truck drivers have to check all load-related documentation to insure that it is complete and accurate. They are often called upon to make use of equipment, such as truck cab computers and telephones, to provide needed data with bases or other drivers. They are expected to maintain logs of working hours and of vehicle service and repair status, following applicable state and federal regulations. Finally, truck drivers check conditions of trailers after contents have been unloaded to insure that there has been no damage.
Every day, truck drivers are expected to be able to maintain precise control of objects and devices through a range of movements. They need to respond quickly in general. It is also important that they coordinate both hands in a single activity.
It is important for truck drivers to secure cargo for transport, using ropes, blocks, chain, binders, or covers. They are often called upon to crank trailer landing gear up and down to safely secure vehicles. They also load and unload vehicles, or help others with loading and unloading, operating any special loading-related equipment on vehicles and using other equipment as needed. They are sometimes expected to remove refuse from loaded trailers. Somewhat less frequently, truck drivers are also expected to climb ladders to inspect loads, ensuring that cargo is secure.
Truck drivers sometimes are asked to place empty carts and pallets in trailers so they will be available to enable placement and movement of goods. They also have to be able to read and interpret maps to establish vehicle routes And finally, they sometimes have to make use of vehicles equipped with snowplows and sander attachments to maintain roads in winter weather.
Like many other jobs, truck drivers must be reliable and be able to deal with stress and deal with situations calmly.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Minneapolis include:
- Bus Driver. Drive bus or motor coach, including regular route operations, charters, and private carriage. May assist passengers with baggage. May collect fares or tickets.
- Delivery Driver. Drive a truck or van with a capacity of under 26,000 GVW, primarily to deliver or pick up merchandise or to deliver packages within a specified area. May require use of automatic routing or location software. May load and unload truck.
- Route Delivery Driver. Drive truck or other vehicle over established routes or within an established territory and sell goods, such as food products, including restaurant take-out items, or pick up and deliver items, such as laundry. May also take orders and collect payments. Includes newspaper delivery drivers.
- School Bus Driver. Transport students or special clients.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Truck Driver Training
Dakota County Technical College - Rosemount, MN
Dakota County Technical College, 1300 145th Street East, Rosemount, MN 55068-2999. Dakota County Technical College is a small college located in Rosemount, Minnesota. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,919 students. Dakota County Technical College has a less than one year program in Truck and Bus Driver/Commercial Vehicle Operation which graduated twenty-one students in 2008.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Minneapolis is situated in Hennepin County, Minnesota. It has a population of over 382,605. The cost of living index in Minneapolis, 101, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Minneapolis are priced at $451,300 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, forty-five new homes were constructed in Minneapolis, down from one hundred fifteen the previous year.
The top three industries for women in Minneapolis are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is educational services, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 22 minutes. More than 37.4% of Minneapolis residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 13.1%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Minneapolis is 7.0%, which is the same as Minnesota's average of 7.0%.
The percentage of Minneapolis residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.7%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the United Methodist Church.
Minneapolis is home to the Saint Josephs Orphanage and the Hiawatha Municipal Golf Course as well as Beards Plaisance and Mississippi Park. Visitors to Minneapolis can choose from COE Mansion Carriage House, Radisson Hotel Metrodome and Best Western Kelly Inn for temporary stays in the area.