Career and Education Opportunities for Bus Drivers in Gulfport, Mississippi
For those living in the Gulfport, Mississippi area, there are many career and education opportunities for bus drivers. There are currently 710 working bus drivers in Mississippi; this should grow 17% to 840 working bus drivers in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for bus drivers, which sees this job pool growing by about 8.2% over the next eight years. Bus drivers generally drive bus or motor coach, including regular route operations, charters, and private carriage.
A person working as a bus driver can expect to earn about $9 per hour or $20,650 annually on average in Mississippi and about $16 hourly or $33,940 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Incomes for bus drivers are not quite as good as in the overall category of Public Service in Mississippi, and better than the overall Public Service category nationally.
The Gulfport area is home to six schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Gulfport where you can get a degree as a bus driver. Given that the most common education level for bus drivers is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a bus driver if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Bus Driver
In general, bus drivers drive bus or motor coach, including regular route operations, charters, and private carriage. They also may assist passengers with baggage.
Bus drivers regulate heating and ventilating systems for passenger comfort. They also park vehicles at loading areas so that passengers can board. Equally important, bus drivers have to drive vehicles over specified routes or to specified destinations in line with time schedules in order to move passengers, complying with traffic regulations. They are often called upon to examine vehicles, and check gas, oil, and water levels before departure. They are expected to advise passengers to be seated and orderly while on vehicles. Finally, bus drivers report delays or accidents.
Every day, bus drivers are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to judge how far and close objects are from one another and themselves. It is also important that they respond quickly in general.
It is important for bus drivers to assist passengers with baggage and collect tickets or cash fares. Somewhat less frequently, bus drivers are also expected to load and unload baggage in baggage compartments.
Bus drivers sometimes are asked to record cash receipts and ticket fares. They also have to be able to make minor repairs to vehicle and change tires And finally, they sometimes have to report delays or accidents.
Like many other jobs, bus drivers must have strong self control in the face of challenging situations and believe in cooperation and coordination.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Gulfport include:
- 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.
- Paramedic. Drive ambulance or assist ambulance driver in transporting sick, injured, or convalescent persons. Assist in lifting patients.
- School Bus Driver. Transport students or special clients.
- Subway Train Operator. Operate subway or elevated suburban train with no separate locomotive, or electric-powered streetcar to transport passengers. May handle fares.
- Taxi Driver. Drive automobiles, vans, or limousines to transport passengers. May occasionally carry cargo.
- Truck Driver. 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. May be required to unload truck. May require use of automated routing equipment. Requires commercial drivers' license.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Bus Driver Training
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College - Perkinston, MS
Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, 51 Main Street, Perkinston, MS 39573. Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College is a medium sized college located in Perkinston, Mississippi. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 9,215 students. Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College has a less than one year and a one to two year program in Truck and Bus Driver/Commercial Vehicle Operation which graduated six and two students respectively in 2008.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Gulfport, Mississippi
Gulfport is located in Harrison County, Mississippi. It has a population of over 70,055, which has shrunk by 1.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Gulfport, 87, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Gulfport are valued at $108,600 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, two hundred forty-two new homes were constructed in Gulfport, down from three hundred twenty-nine the previous year.
The top three industries for women in Gulfport are health care, arts, entertainment, and recreation, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, arts, entertainment, and recreation, and public administration. The average commute to work is about 20 minutes. More than 19.1% of Gulfport residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.8%, is lower than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Gulfport is 9.3%, which is less than Mississippi's average of 9.5%.
The percentage of Gulfport residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 50.8%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Saint Johns Catholic Church, Saint James Baptist Church and Broadmoor Baptist Church are all churches located in Gulfport. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the Catholic Church and the United Methodist Church.
Gulfport is home to the Harrison County Courthouse and the West Side Community Center as well as Cowan Road Field and Harbor Square Park. Shopping centers in the area include Great Southern Shopping Center, Gulf Mart Shopping Center and Hardy Court Shopping Center. Visitors to Gulfport can choose from Best Western Seaway Inn, Crystal Inn and Best Western Seaway for temporary stays in the area.