LIT receives $1.1 million state funding for Truck Driving Academy
BEAUMONT – Lamar Institute of Technology recently received $1.1 in additional state funding for its Professional Truck Driving Academy. The funding was just approved by the Texas Legislature, thanks to the leadership efforts of State Rep. Dade Phelan of House District 21 and LIT President Lonnie L. Howard.
The funds from the state can be utilized for upgrading facilities and equipment as LIT works towards filling the needs of the workforce in the Golden Triangle and beyond, starting Sept. 1, 2019.
Over 54,000 job postings were listed for truck drivers in Jefferson, Orange, Hardin and Newton counties from 2015-2017, according to EMSI economic modeling data. With a median salary of $45,000 a year and the cost of a Class B license class starting at just $1,500, the return on investment should be a selling point for potential students.
“Due to the high demand and high pay for truck drivers, Lamar Institute of Technology’s Truck Driving Academy currently has a waiting list for those seeking this training,” Dean of Strategic and Workforce Initiatives Dr. Miranda Phillips said. “These funds will enable LIT to increase training so our Truck Driving Academy can better serve the training needs of our community.”
Rep. Phelan recognized the urgency in securing funding for this cause. The expanded Professional Truck Driving Academy would be able to serve approximately 90 students per year, which is 60 more students than are currently being trained.
Phelan said, “Lamar Institute of Technology provides critical workforce training for Southeast Texans and I am proud of the work that was done to secure funds to support the Professional Truck Driving Academy.”