Twelve students walked across the Southeastern Community College auditorium stage to accept truck driver training certificates of completion at the Oct. 4 graduation ceremony. The partnership between SCC, Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute and the Town of Fair Bluff brought about the new program that started Aug. 1. 

“We are excited to be working with Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute,” said Angie Ransom, dean of business careers and technical programs. The partnership is supported by a grant that also provides scholarship assistance to students. Out of the 12 students who took the class, all 12 have graduated.” 

Scott Hartley, director of truck driver training at CCCTI, explained that his program started in 1990 with one truck and has grown to more than 90 trucks and more than 2,000 graduates since then. Hartley said the goal of the partnership is for SCC to have its own truck driver training program. 

“This has been a long time coming, and there was no doubt that this team could pull it off,” said Dr. Chris English, SCC President. “I knew that we couldn’t do this alone. Truck driver training is very expensive from the equipment, fuel, insurance and dedicated instructional staff on hand to be able to deliver the program.” 

Dr. Sylvia Cox, executive vice president and chief academic officer, said she was “completely blown away” by the quality of CCCPI’s truck driver training program when she visited their campus. She said that SCC was honored to partner with them because of the instructional staff’s teaching methods with competency-based learning.  

“You don’t get to fail,” Cox said. “You go back and get it right because now, you get to not only change your life but radically change your family’s life as well.” 

Cox advised graduates to have a financial mentor and make a budget plan for spending and savings. She reminded graduates that they are part of the Rams family and that resources are available to them.  

Ransom explained that, with the help of the Town of Fair Bluff, the college has extended the width of the driving pad to accommodate a larger enrollment class of 18 students that started Oct. 10. The next truck driver training orientation is scheduled for Nov. 29 at 10 a.m. 

Six graduates received financial aid through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Contact the NCWorks Career Center in A building for more information or Valerie Register at 910-788-6350. 

Click here to see more photos from the graduation ceremony