Augusta Business Daily

Tue, November 28, 2023

Training to keep America’s supply chain rolling

One of the long-lasting impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic was the disruption in shipments of goods and materials. Aiken Technical College is partnering with Ancora Training to offer a new CDL Class A tractor-trailer course.

In addition to CDL driver training, Ancora offers training in healthcare, Internet technology, and business. It operates six private, post-secondary school brands with 22 campus locations.

“Trucks are the backbone of America’s economy,” said Athena Freeman, director of the Office of Continuing Education at Aiken Tech. “Every year, trucks move nearly $800 billion in total freight revenue, which represents more than 80.4 percent of the nation’s freight. The most recent estimates from the American Trucking Association show a shortage of more than 78,000 drivers. The CDL-A ATC training will prepare the workforce to meet those demands.”

The continued supply chain issues have been exacerbated by the trucking industry struggling to hire and train new drivers, while retaining current drivers.

In 2022, the U.S. Department of Transportation said it was making progress on the Biden-Harris Trucking Action Plan, which started in 2021. It focuses on retaining drivers by making the career more attractive, along with recruiting new drivers into the profession.

A statement from the USDOT reads in part: “Key achievements include more than 90 employers launching Registered Apprenticeship programs in 90 days, a 112 percent increase in commercial driver’s licenses issued in January and February 2022 compared to 2021, a new Women of Trucking Advisory Board, and a new Veterans Trucking Task Force to help bring more veterans into the trucking industry.”

Classes will be offered during the day and evening. Each will run for four weeks.

Day sessions will meet Monday through Thursday, from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Those start on Sept. 18, Oct. 16, and Nov. 13.

The evening session will also begin on Sept. 18. It will run for nine weeks. Students will meet Monday through Thursday, from 5:30-9:30 p.m.

“It is an honor to be working with Aiken Tech,” said Natalie Williams, vice president of Client Operations at Ancora Training. “A professional CDL course is an essential part of any college’s workforce development offerings, as it’s a viable career path for those who might not want to pursue a traditional degree. We are looking forward to training Aiken Tech’s adult learners.”

South Carolina residents can take the course, free of charge, thanks to grants. The tuition for out-of-state students will be $4,800.

The course will also be offered during the spring. Those dates will be announced later.

For more information, contact the Office of Continuing Education at Aiken Tech by emailing

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