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How much will My CDL Training Cost?


CDL Training Programs to Keep You on Budget

picture of Diesel Driving Academy training truck parked on the road with a sunny blue sky in the background

Diesel Driving Academy offers students the options of three driver training programs to choose from. Each of these programs are “career oriented” and prepare students for a driving career in a short period of time.

Tuitions costs vary by program, and your out-of-pocket costs will depend on what types of financial assistance you qualify for. Our goal is to offer quality truck driver courses at an affordable cost to students.

Training Program Costs

Advanced Tractor Trailer – This program is taught four days per week (20 weeks), or five evenings per week (30 weeks), and is offered at three campus locations: Shreveport, Baton Rouge, and Little Rock. Tuition for this program is $10,700

Basic Tractor Trailer – This driver training program is offered at all four campus locations: Shreveport, Baton Rouge, Little Rock, and West Monroe. This course lasts 4 weeks for day classes and 8 weeks for night classes. Tuition is $5,900.

CDL Prep Tractor Trailer – This training program is 3 weeks, or 136 clock hours. Tuition is $4,900.

What’s covered in Tuition?

Tuition costs include the registration fee of $100. Tuition also includes:

All Training Materials. Students are not required to purchase any additional supplies, books, or tools other than their DOT Physical Examination and Commercial Drivers License (CDL).

Intensive Classroom Instruction: in-class hours cover standards, qualifications, regulations, logging, ICC Safety Regulations and preventive maintenance.

Maneuvering and Driver Training: docking, blindside parking, offset alleys, parallel parking, cornering and many other maneuvering techniques, basic hookup and preventative maintenance and pre-trip inspection.

Road Driving: hands-on training in the driver’s seat.

Financial Assistance is Available!

Financial aid helps pay for some or most of your tuition costs, and is available to students who qualify. Different financial aid comes in the form of government loans, grants, and personal loans. Additionally, there are financing options available to you through DDA. Many students use a combination of methods to cover the training costs including their own personal resources.

Whether you are just starting, changing, or advancing your career, getting your CDL license at DDA will help you earn positions with top companies offering great pay and competitive benefits.

Now that you are ready to take the next step as a truck driver, contact us to get started on your path to driving freedom. After all, there is no better time than right now to start work towards your new career!


On the Road Again: Life as an OTR Truck Driver


If you are looking for a new career, and you don’t want to spend your life stuck behind a desk all day, you might be one of those people with a more adventurous personality. That’s a great thing, and you should use it. In fact, you have options you might not have considered. Everyone is probably telling you to get a corporate job, but there are fun, well-paying choices that are never going to involve a suit and tie, or 8am meetings every Monday morning.

One of those choices is getting your CDL and starting a great new job as an over-the-road (OTR) truck driver. You can see all the great beauty this country has to offer, and get paid for it.

Can You Really Get Paid to Travel the Country?

You can definitely get paid to drive a semi around the country, and there are jobs that need filled right now. According to CNN Money, there were more than 200,000 open truck driving positions available in 2012, and more were coming open all the time.

Four years later, in 2016, the shortage numbers were still very similar. Why? Because it’s not a job for everyone. A lot of people want to be home on the weekends, or they have family obligations. They may just not be the adventurous type, or they get bored driving. If you enjoy driving and don’t mind having adventures away from home, though, trucking can be a great choice.

That same CNN article goes on to say that the median salary for a truck driver is just over $37,000 per year, with the top 10% of truck drivers making $58,000 or above. Some become owner operators, and they have the potential for six-figure incomes.

Truck drivers who are committed to what they do take it seriously, and they enjoy it, as well. Yes, the hours can be long and the schedule can be erratic, but those are just a couple of the reasons that people who aren’t looking for a desk job do so well as OTR truck drivers. There’s always something new to see or do.

Do You Really Want to Sit Behind a Desk All Day?

picture of the view of a highway from the drivers perspective of a semi truck

This could be your office.

You could sit behind the wheel, instead, and enjoy ever-changing scenery instead of staring at four walls, a tiny cubicle, or a computer screen. Whether you get hired on with a big, nationally known company or you choose a smaller local option that will keep you a little bit closer to home, companies are looking for good drivers.

Getting your CDL will take some time and effort, along with a little bit of money, but once you have it you can go anywhere. It’s like a ticket to freedom. Don’t spend your life behind a desk, feeling bored and not getting to have fun. Get behind the wheel instead, so you can see the country, meet new people, travel around, and really appreciate all the great things that working as an OTR truck driver can offer.

If you’re ready to get on the road, let us know! The right training makes a world of difference. Plus, getting your CDL training from Diesel Driving Academy means you’ll benefit from our full time Job Placement assistance – for life! Classes are starting soon, make sure you register today! Give us a call at 1-800-551-8900.


Winter Weather Driving Tips … For Southern Drivers


You have undoubtedly heard the jokes about Southern drivers told by your brethren above the Mason Dixon Line. They believe folks in the South cannot drive in the snow and ice. They have mental images of Southerners swerving about and running off the road. Well, to a degree, this perception is true.

In wintry weather all havoc breaks loose. Do you recall the Atlanta Snow Jam of 2014? Kids were stuck on school buses. Cars got abandoned after running out of gas while sitting in traffic for hours. The Governor had to proclaim a state of emergency.

The reality is things get dicey in bad weather. However, things can be much different. Southerners can better survive wintry roads by following some simple rules.

Watch Out for Black Ice

It is important to pay attention to and be aware of black ice. This thin layer of ice covers winter roads, making them extremely slippery.

The moniker “black ice” comes from the transparency of the covering. When driving fast, a motorist can easily miss the hard to distinguish glare. For this reason, it is highly important for you to drive a bit more slowly in wintry weather. Take it easy and keep an eye out for icing.

Be especially vigilant when the temperature is below 32 degrees and there is precipitation falling. Look for patches of gloss along the road.

Brake Earlier and Gradually

Southerners are used to driving fast and, then, stopping on a dime when necessary. Doing so is more problematic for you in the snow.

Vehicles often continue moving with inertia when snow is on the ground. The normal friction between road and tires is affected by the layer of snow. So, it is necessary to brake earlier and more gradually. Otherwise, the odds of you running into something or somebody increase significantly.

Maintain a Safe Distance

Tailgating like a NASCAR driver is not recommended on most days but certainly not in the snow or ice.

Maintain an exaggerated following distance during winter weather. Normally, motorists should stay about three seconds behind others. Triple this time to nine seconds, in general, during inclement winter weather.

De-Ice Surfaces

Be sure to have some rock salt available to de-ice surfaces that are covered with large amounts of ice. Unfortunately, most cities are ill-prepared to deal with snow and icing. Few own the large fleets of winter plows found up North. This task falls upon all responsible motorists.

Think you could safely drive a 18-wheeler in winter conditions? Thousands of drivers do so every year, but more drivers are needed. If you’re ready to get behind the wheel of a big truck, learn from master certified instructors at Diesel Driving Academy who will teach you how to safely maneuver a truck in all weather conditions. Classes are always forming, but call today so we can save you a spot in our next one! 1-800-551-8900.


Trucking Industry Outlook 2017


The trucking industry has a lot to look forward to in 2017. One of the key indicators is corporate profit which swelled to $50.1 Billion in the third quarter of 2016 up from $5.6 Billion in the second quarter of 2016. In other words, that kind of growth is sustainable even as we wait for the data from the fourth quarter of 2016.

What that means for trucking is more demand for goods as stores as retailers replenish their stock and manufacturers begin ordering raw materials.

Truck Driving and New Jobs

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows that heavy and tractor-trailer truck driver employment should grow by five percent through the 2024 cycle. For one thing, they expect to see nearly 100,000 new jobs open up for truck drivers by 2024. What is not talked about is the aging factor of current truck drivers. According to the American Trucking Association, the median age of truck drivers who do over-the-road trucking is 49. What that shows us is that age plays a role in the truck driver shortage.

The Trucking Industry Needs Young Drivers

The industry is not recruiting new drivers at a fast enough rate to replace the drivers who are retiring. What that means for the youth of today, is that this is an industry that needs young drivers. Another odd statistic that emerged from the American Trucking Association is that female drivers are sorely under-represented in trucking. Currently, female truck drivers make up about six percent of the total population of those who drive trucks.

While 2017 gets underway, the data from 2016 paints a fairly clear picture. Even with the current political climate, the outlook for trucking is good. If the Gross Domestic Product continues to grow then expect businesses to need more goods and that means that the population of existing truck drivers we continue to be in short supply. For younger drivers, include women, the drive to replace existing drivers is strong. What that means is that the job outlook for the truckers is warming for 2017 and beyond.

Get your start in the trucking industry and get quality Job Placement assistance with CDL training from Diesel Driving Academy. Request free information today, or give us a call at 1-800-551-8900.

Arkansas to Shorten Wait Time for CDL Exam


By: David Elfin
Staff Reporter, Transport Topics
November 30, 2016

Arkansas truck driving students have had a problem.

There were too many of them ready take the state’s skills test to earn their commercial driving licenses for the number of examiners or exam slots available. Arkansas Aims to Lessen Wait for CDL Exams

So potential drivers were waiting an average of three weeks to be tested, a lengthy period for those who had left a job or were unemployed.

There’s also concern about the deterioration of the skills they had learned in driving school.

“We had some of our students scheduled for orientation at Arkansas carriers and we couldn’t get ’em tested so the carriers [complained],” said Bruce Busada, president of the Diesel Driving Academy in Little Rock.

“Everybody’s cutting budgets, but these states don’t realize they’re hurting themselves more when they cut something like this because they’re keeping people in their own state from getting high-paying jobs.”


Continue reading this article at:

© Transport Topics, American Trucking Associations Inc.
Reproduction, redistribution, display or rebroadcast by any means without written permission is prohibited.

DDA graduate Kenneth Strother finalist for 2016 Top Rookie of the Year!


We would like to congratulate Diesel Driving Academy’s very own Kenneth Strother for being one of the Top 10 finalists for Trucking’s “Top Rookie of the Year” for 2016! Kenneth graduated from DDA, and started driving for Stevens Transport.

“After an expert panel of judges sifted through countless submissions for the Trucking’s “Top Rookie of the Year” award, 10 finalists have been named. Named in honor of the late CVTA Executive Director Mike O’Connell, this award recognizes the best truck driver who has been on the job for less than a year.”

The winner will be announced at the Great American Trucking Show in Dallas on Friday, August 26, 2016.

The 10 finalists are:

  • Mario Cardenas of TMC Transportation (Roadmaster Drivers School)
  • Brian College of Carbon Express, Inc. (Commercial Drivers School)
  • Chris Crowell of Werner Enterprises, Inc. (CDS Tractor Trailer Training)
  • Brandon Douglas of Melton Truck Lines, Inc. (American Truck Training)
  • Shawna Froehlich of Dartco, Inc. (Heavy Metal Truck Training)
  • Dave Honbarger of Maverick Transportation, Inc. (TransTech)
  • Willis Robinson of Cargo Transporters, Inc. (Future Truckers of America)
  • Kenneth Strother of Stevens Transport (Diesel Driving Academy)
  • Marc Walther of Wil-Trans (Northeast Technical Institute)
  • Kenneth Youmans of Dutch Maid Logistics (Professional Drivers Academy)

DDA in the news: LDCC cranks up truck driving program


Commercial vehicle operation training is returning to Louisiana Delta Community College thanks to a partnership with the Diesel Driving Academy of Louisiana.

Source: LDCC cranks up truck driving program

Posted 11:20 a.m. CST November 19, 2015
by Scott Rogers,

Diesel Driving Academy and Delta officials made the announcement Thursday outside its western Ouachita Parish campus.

The Diesel Driving Academy is a family-owned, Louisiana-based school established in 1972. It serves campuses across the state, Arkansas and Atlanta, Georgia.

‘We’ve kind of mothballed our driving program for a little while because we wanted to re-evaluate our curriculum and make sure we meet all of the standards in that industry,” said LDCC Chancellor Barbara Hanson.

Fortune Magazine reports there is a current shortage nationwide of 35,000 to 40,000 trained truck drivers.

LDCC’s Google Analytic report reflected truck driving as one of the top two most-searched LDCC career options in Region 8.

Trucks move about 70 percent of all U.S. inland freight, according to the American Trucking Association, and the driver shortage could affect consumer prices as labor costs rise, according to the association. The ATA is estimating the need for as many as 100,000 drivers a year to keep up with the demand from continued economic expansion.

Partnering with Diesel Driving Academy was a natural consideration for LDCC as avenues were explored to bring this curriculum to the region, Hanson said.

Entry-level driving positions can start out at $45,000, but because of the shortage, Hanson said drivers can negotiate for a higher salary.

With the partnership, students will have assistance in securing employment upon completion of the four-week training program.

Bruce Busada, president of Diesel Driving Academy, said it’s not uncommon in a driver’s second and third year to earn in excess of $80,000.

Michael Krieg, regional director of training and placement for the Diesel Driving Academy, said the program offers a “golden ticket” for students as most will find a job upon graduation.

“You can punch that ticket wherever you want to go,” Krieg said. It’s a great opportunity to train folks and get them in a new career. We’re excited to get it up and running in Monroe here at Delta Community College.”

Dean Baugh, Delta’s economic and workforce development director, said Delta constantly gets calls from people asking about the commercial vehicle operations program.

“Being responsive to our community and the workforce needs of our area, we had to make this work,” Baugh said.

Classes will begin Jan. 21, 2016 at LDCC’s West Monroe Campus, 609 Vocational Parkway. There is funding opportunities for eligible candidates. Interested parties should call: 318-362-5415.

Students must be at least 21 years old and be able to pass a drug screen.

For additional information on the CDL career training programs, financial aid, or job placement assistance offered at Diesel Driving Academy, please contact the school anytime by calling 1-800-551-8900, or simply complete the “request free information” form you see on any webpage. You can find a list of our current campus locations at

LDCC partners with Diesel Driving Academy


LDCC is reigniting its Commercial Vehicle Operations, better know as the truck driving program, by partnering with Diesel Driving Academy.

Source: LDCC partners with Diesel Driving Academy

Posted: Wed 4:40 PM, Nov 18, 2015

WEST MONROE, La (Press Release) – LDCC is reigniting its Commercial Vehicle Operations (CVO) Program. Some may know it better as the truck driving program. Fortune reported in an article entitled, “There’s a slow-rolling crisis in trucking labor-and it’s costing everyone” that the current shortage of truck drivers nationwide is 35,000-40,000. LDCC’s Google Analytics report reflected truck driving as one of the top two most searched for LDCC career options in region eight. Partnering with Diesel Driving Academy was a natural consideration for LDCC as avenues were explored to bring this curriculum to our communities.

Students would be enrolled in a four-week long program and upon completion, be eligible for jobs with starting salaries around $40,000. Bruce Busada, President of Diesel Driving Academy, states that it’s not uncommon in driver’s second and third year to earn in excess of $80,000. Students must be at least 21 years old and be able to pass a drug screen. Classes will begin January 21, 2016 at LDCC’s West Monroe Campus located 609 Vocational Parkway. There is funding opportunities for eligible candidates. Interested parties should call: 318-362-5415.

The current truck driver shortage has some pretty serious repercussions as it is being blamed, by some, as the cause for declining volumes and profits. Trucks move about 70% of all U.S. inland freight, according to the American Trucking Association, thus the shortage would naturally impact consumer prices as labor costs rise. The ATA is estimating the need for as many as 100,000 drivers a year to keep up with the demand from continued economic expansion.

LDCC is continuing to fulfill its mission by responding to the needs of our students, community and business & industry.

For additional information on the CDL career training programs, financial aid, or job placement assistance offered at Diesel Driving Academy, please contact the school anytime by calling 1-800-551-8900, or simply complete the “request free information” form you see on any webpage. You can find a list of our current campus locations at

Veterans Day 2015: Honoring Our Staff and Instructors


In preparation for Veterans Day tomorrow, November 11th, we’d like to take today to acknowledge and honor the staff and instructors who are veteran members of the US Military. From everyone at DDA, we want to thank you for your service, and thank you for being a valuable part of our family!

Atlanta Campus:

Norman Turner, Instructor – US Navy
Jim Southern, Instructor – US Navy
Peter Holden, School Director – US Navy

Baton Rouge Campus:

Paul Anderson, Instructor – US Navy.
Michael Morris, Instructor – US Navy.
Douglas Hester, Instructor – US Army.
Desmond Mayes, Instructor – US Navy.

Shreveport Campus:

Donald Bonnett, Instructor – US Army
Clifford Cannon, Instructor – US Army
David Shipley, Instructor – US Marines
Anthony Spencer, Instructor – US Army
Roger Rose, Admissions Officer – US Army

Little Rock Campus:

Cliff Welch, Instructor – US Air Force
Stephen Grandon, Instructor – US Navy
Ana Picado, Instructor – US Army
George Beer, Instructor – US Army
Joel Easley, Instructor – US Air Force
Bryan Okvath, Instructor – US Army
Rob Sellers, Admissions Officer – National Guard

Greenlight a Vet: Showing Support for Our Veterans


Greenlight a VetShow your support for our Military Veterans. The Greenlight a Vet campaign helps establish visible national support for our veterans. Show your support simply by changing one porch light to green in a visible location – on your porch, or in your window – and keep it glowing every day as a symbol of appreciation and support for our veterans.

When they’re out of uniform, and in civilian clothes, it’s hard to show our veterans the appreciation they deserve, because they are more camouflaged than ever. This simple campaign is intended to spark a national conversation regarding the recognition of veterans, and “greenlight” them forward as valued members of our communities.

Learn more about the Greenlight a Vet campaign at and watch the video below:

At Diesel Driving Academy, many of our staff members and instructors are veterans, so we know and understand the specific challenges veterans face in making the transition from military to civilian life. we are proud to support our men and women in uniform, and are honored to participate in financial assistance & CDL training programs specifically designed to prepare veterans for careers in the civilian workforce, in the trucking and transportation industries.

We provide veteran CDL career training programs at campuses located in Louisiana, Arkansas, and Georgia. Call 1-800-551-8900 to see how easy it is to get started training in your new civilian career!

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