Northland College»Academic Programs»Career & Technical Programs»Commercial Vehicle Operation Program

Commercial Vehicle Operation

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  • No Laptop RequiredLaptop NOT Required

The Commercial Vehicle Operators certificate program is a comprehensive truck driving program that will prepare you for the successful acquisition of a Commercial Driver's License (CDL). This program offers you the ability to get behind the wheel and learn by driving tractor-trailer combinations under the direction of experienced instructors. Students will log a significant amount of miles behind the wheel prior to their graduation so you will be ready to confidently enter the workforce that needs you NOW. Students will use a college-owned tractor-trailer to test during this program. Upon successful completion of the program, graduates will be qualified to sit for the CDL examination in their State of Licensure.

The program will provide direct connection to regional transportation companies in the form of job fairs, guest speakers, company recruiters. Resume building, application preparation and interview techniques are included in this program.

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Feel like you need a little more direction? Our GPS LifePlan website helps students set goals and design plans that will lead them to the success they desire. Consult our GPS LifePlan website for information for your career, work, and educational planning!

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Program Accreditation

Program Accreditation

College Accreditation

Northland Community & Technical College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

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Program Specific Requirements

Students must complete and successfully pass:

1. DOT Physical Examination during 1st week of class.

2. DOT Pre-hiring Drug Screening/Test during 1st week of class.

3. DOT Random Drug Screening Pool within 16-week course.

4. Driving background check prior to start of semester or during 1st week of class. Students must possess a valid driverís license and be declared "eligible" to drive State of Minnesota owned vehicle. Free of serious driving infractions for the last five years.

5. CPR and First Aid Certification. Arrangements wil be made for students to acquire American Heart Association (AHA) CPR certification; AHA First Aid Certification. Cost for class is $50.

6. All students are scheduled by NCTC/CVOP staff for their respective state administered CDL Exam and are expected to show up on time for exam. If for any reason a student believes they are not adequately prepared, they must notify NCTC/CVOP staff at least one (1) week prior to their scheduled test date, as each respective state requires this notice to assure another person can get scheduled. When a student does not notify NCTC/CVOP staff within the prescribed time line, nor show up when scheduled, this will be counted against their two (2) allowed testing opportunities. Each studentís balance must be paid in full before they are allowed to take the CDL exam using the State of Minnesota vehicle.

7. All students will be allotted six (6) months to complete their two respective state administered CDL Exams. The effective start date will commence on the date when the student began training at NCTC/CVOP, or the date when the student was issued their state driving permit, whichever is applicable per NCTC/CVOP staff.

8. Students applying for financial aid may need to supply the following: social security numbers, dates of birth, postsecondary institution transcripts, and other documents necessary to determine eligibility.

9. Northland faculty or staff shall require a student to submit to an alcohol and/or controlled substance test when faculty or staff has reasonable suspicion to believe that the student has violated the prohibitions concerning alcohol or controlled substances. The determination that reasonable suspicion exists to require the student drive to undergo an alcohol and/or controlled substance test must be based on specific, contemporaneous, articulable observations concerning the appearance, behavior, speech or body odors of the driver.

* Please note that registration in the program's courses does not guarantee driving eligibility. Factors such as your driving background check and DOT Physical/Drug screening may rule you ineligible even after you are registered. Eligibility to drive a Northland vehicle does not guarantee eligibility of a state issued permit or commercial driver's license (CDL).

Program Course Listings

Required Courses

Course # Course Name Credits
CVOP 1100 State/Federal Regulation 4 credits
CVOP 1105 Safe Operation/Regulation 4 credits
CVOP 1110 Trip Planning 3 credits
CVOP 1115 Commercial Op I 4 credits
CVOP 1120 Commercial Op II 3 credits
TOTAL CREDITS: 18 credits

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Program Learner Outcomes

1. Student will demonstrate the ability to safely operate a commercial vehicle while complying with state and federal motor vehicle traffic laws, traffic regulations and driver's license laws.

2. Student will demonstrate defensive driving techniques.

3. Student will plan the most effective and efficient routing between pickup and delivery points and calculate fuel efficiency.

4. Student will demonstrate inspections and safety checks.

5. Student will demonstrate proper logbook usage.

6. Student will diagnose equipment failure.

Employment Outlook & Opportunities

Northland Career Center

Job Openings

Counselors are available in the Career Center to assist with career advising, job search resources, employer connections, occupational descriptions, employment outlook, earnings, education/training requirements and sources.

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The employment outlook for truck drivers in the state of Minnesota from 2010 to 2020 is 22.7%, a high growth career.

According to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) Labor Market Information there is a projected increase of 4,817 truck driving jobs in Northwest Minnesota to 2014. The projected increase for Minnesota is 17,346.

Program Faculty

East Grand Forks Campus