CCC commercial driver's license training underway


Kevin Kahn, primary instructor, and Maggie Blancarte, admissions coordinator, staff the new CDL program at CCC, made possible through a partnership with HDS Trucking, Inc. and the Phoenix Truck Driving School.



FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - Safety inspections. Figuring out 13 gears while double clutching. Backing a 53-foot trailer.


All very important, among a host of other important skills, to successfully driving a semi, which is why a commercial driver’s license is required to operate one.


In June, Coconino Community College began offering a Commercial Driver’s License Training program for people interested in driving semis for a living.


“CCC is so pleased to partner with HDS Trucking, Inc. and the Phoenix Truck Driving School to offer CDL training for pathways to employment,” said Kay Leum, CCC’s Executive Director of Extended Learning. “CCC worked over the last several years to find the right approach to offer this important career training. HDS Trucking developed a very successful program in Kingman through Mohave Community College, and that success made the decision to partner easy.”


Maggie Blancarte, admissions coordinator for the program, said that the course lasts four weeks and covers 160 hours of instruction to test for the Class A CDL. A Class A covers all larger vehicles up to 18-wheelers.


“The demand for truckers is extremely high, and it opens a lot of doors to say you have a Class A CDL,” Blancarte said.


The first week is completed online and covers all elements necessary for students to receive a permit to drive a truck. Once students receive the permit, they can begin the training in and around the vehicle, said Kevin Kahn, primary instructor for the Flagstaff program.


“This is not an easy course,” he added. “You need to study and work hard, just like anything in life.”


After getting their permits, the students will be going over the truck from the outside to the inside in order to learn all the safety, maintenance and operational features before ever starting it up and getting behind the wheel, Kahn said. Once they learn all pre-trip skills, they will begin working on yard skills of backing up and parallel parking. The third step will be to take the semi out on the road. Students will all be learning this together so that they can learn from one another.


“All this is about safety and to know what they are doing,” Kahn said.


The course is designed very much like the actual CDL test, which is administered in three parts – pre-trip, yard skills and the road test. Once students pass all three parts with the Arizona Motor Vehicle Division, they receive their Class A CDL and can start looking for careers. Kahn added that his team works hard to make sure that the students have job prospects before they complete the class and work on passing the test at the MVD. When students apply, they also fill out a “pre-hire” form, which is sent to local companies interested in drivers.


Blancarte and Kahn would like to invite anybody curious about the program to the CCC Fourth Street campus, 3000 N. Fourth St., for a visit. Hop in a truck, take a look around, get a feel for it and see if driving a truck might be a good career for you.


The CCC program also offers Class B CDL training, which covers working vehicles like cement mixers, delivery trucks and dump trucks that do not have a trailer.


For more information about the CDL program at CCC, visit the Phoenix Truck Driving School’s website at . For more information on CCC’s courses, degrees and certificates, visit .



Tuesday, 6th July 2021

All Dates

  • Tuesday, 6th July 2021