WDT graduates 8 truck drivers as supply chain issues and labor shortages continue to hit US

Jordin Williams, a recent Western Dakota Tech truck driving graduate.
Jordin Williams, a recent Western Dakota Tech truck driving graduate.(Jeffrey Lindblom)
Published: Apr. 1, 2022 at 5:00 PM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - In a post pandemic world, we’ve been hearing about national level slow downs in businesses receiving materials, goods, groceries and more.

All stemming from supply chain issues.

At the root of it all, a shortage of truck drivers.

The need for truck drivers is so high that some companies paying for some of their staff to get their commercial drivers licenses.

“So, they sent me to school,” explains Jordin Williams, recent truck driving graduate from Western Dakota Tech (WDT). “They paid for everything. They paid me to even go to school. It’s one of those things that I can go anywhere now with this. It’s something that’s a career out of it. So, with that being said. It’s a never ending road.”

A six week program, where the industry need is so high, because Williams says, “you hit the ground running as soon as you come out. You know, traveling thousands of miles right out the gate.”

Williams says he’s proud to be a part of America’s backbone. Using trailers to get things from point A to B all across the United States.

“It’s going to be a need forever. It’s more than just your job. Sometimes,” Williams says, “you end up staying on the road, and it turns into a lifestyle.”

A lifestyle leaned on by industry who needs to get products shipped around the country. Which, Williams calls “a never ending loop. It just keeps going and going and going. Without them, we wouldn’t have a job. Without us, they wouldn’t have truck driving at night to deliveries, to over the road. Just all of the above. There’s just never ending options.”

He says those deliveries are made easier with the evolution of technology, but “people are always afraid that they’re going to lose their jobs to robots one day.”

Although there are rumors about that happening in the industry one day, hit the breaks, because he says it’s not to that point. Rather, that technology just helps them do their jobs, because “you always have to be able to make sure that you’re a ginormous vehicle on the road.”

That’s where tech steps up with things like lane and parking assistance. He says that keeps people safe on the road. He’s more concerned with his own safety from veterans, being a rookie in the business, because “you always hear these veterans talking about how many miles they’ve put on. Millions of miles.”

Veteran or not, everyone started at square one. At some point, getting their commercial drivers license.

“You almost start turning into one of those guys. The little things get you going,” Williams says with a smile, “it’s worth it in the end, cause the options are never ending.”

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