Community colleges in Arkansas are working to train more long-haul truck drivers.

The University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana along with three other community colleges in Arkansas have partnered together to create the Arkansas Trucking Academy (ArkTA) Consortium.

The ArkTA program received a $720,000 grant to start operations and begin training students to obtain a commercial driving license.

The memorandum of understanding will cover two years through June 30, 2023.

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson said, “This is another pace-setting workforce solution that has grown out of conversations between leaders in industry and education. Arkansas’s businesses had a problem, our educators stepped in to fill it, and we are able to support it with an Arkansas Regional Workforce grant. It’s a model for partnerships between the private sector and the government. Because of that, we soon will be putting more trucks on the road with first-rate drivers at the wheel.”

“General freight trucking has always been a high-demand field in our area, and this partnership program will help provide quality training for individuals to fill these good jobs,” said Akili Moses Israel, UAHT Director of Business & Industry Training. “The driving academy aims to implement, maintain, and evaluate a high-quality truck driving training program leading to a CDL.”

The program cost is $1,300, and classes will begin in the fall 2021 semester.

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