Commercial Truck Driving-Entry Level

Get behind the wheel and gain hands-on Commercial Truck Driving experience!

Want to be a truck driver? The industry is wide open! According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for a truck driver is $42,480 per year. At Bates, you can earn your certificate of training and Class A CDL with all endorsements in just one quarter. Students train in three axle tractors (9-speed, 10-speed and 13-speed transmissions, 28-53 foot trailers). All students begin on a commercial truck simulator and then progress to behind-the-wheel driving. Students learn logbooks, receive Atlas training, and complete weight distribution and backing exercises. Earn your Class A, B, and C CDL and get a job driving local (intrastate) or cross-country (interstate).

Contact Information:

Leesa Ostrander, Career Advisor

South Campus

7:30AM - 4:00PM

  • Get the skills you need for the career you want.

More about the program:

Bates Technical College is the only school in Washington State certified by the Professional Truck Driver Institute. Students prepare for entry-level employment as commercial truck drivers with the goal of a Class A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) with all endorsements. Training takes place in classrooms, on Bates’ truck driving range, and on the road, using a variety of equipment.  


  • Through an Opportunity Grant, special tuition and book funding is available to assist low-income adult students entering this program. Contact Pavel Samoylenko, 253.680.7033, for more information.  
  • The CDL program will not be taking applications for Summer Quarter 2022. We are accepting applications for a potential Fall Quarter class start. Additionally, the CDL program has been streamlined to one quarter.
  • We encourage you to get on the waitlist. Enrollment into the CDL course is on a first-come basis.

Degrees & Certificates:

  • Certificate of Training: Commercial Truck Driving
  • CIP: 49.0205 EPC: 715 

Program Lengths:

  • Certificate of Training: 1 quarter

Faculty and Other Contact Information:

Pam Simpson


Bob Gunter


Henry Reisch


Note: Information is accurate as of its original posting date. The college reserves the right to edit, change, or update information as needed throughout the year. Up-to-date information is available in Student Services.

  • Description:
    • 2-3 quarter Certificate of Training
    • Maximum class size: 10
    • Student to teacher ratio: 10:1
    • Enrollment point: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
    • This certificate offers primarily face-to-face instruction with some online, hybrid, and web-enhanced courses. See course descriptions for details.
    • Commercial truck driving boasts 11 class A trucks, 14 trailers, 3 class B box trucks, advanced truck simulator, the only closed course CDL driving range in WA state.
    • Students are responsible for purchasing gloves and a hammer. DOL fees including driving record, Medical cert., Permit fees, skill test, and CDL issuance.
    • Full time CDL training program with very high pass rate. No night time program offered at this time.
    Course CodeCourse TitleCourse Credits
    TRUCK101Safety/First Aid3
    TRUCK102Introduction to the Trucking Industry4
    TRUCK103Commercial Drivers License (CDL)4
    TRUCK104Pre-Trip Requirements3
    TRUCK105Close Quarters Operation5
    TRUCK106Materials/Cargo I3
    TRUCK107City/Town Driving5
    TRUCK108Freeway/Open Road I5
    TRUCK110City/Town Driving4
    TRUCK112Freeway/Open Road II4
    TRUCK113Advanced Commercial Driving4

Prerequisites – Applicants must:  

  1. Possess a valid Washington State driver’s license;  
  2. Have a driving record with no DUI, negligent, reckless, or hit and run infractions within the past five years;
  3. Have no more than three moving violations in the past 36 months (a state vehicle operating requirement);
  4. Must be able to pass the Federal Department of Transportation physical exam and drug screen;
  5. Not have a felony within the past five years;
  6. Be a minimum of 18 years of age to enroll in local commercial driving;
  7. Be a minimum of 21 years of age to enroll in long-haul commercial driving. 

The Commercial Truck Driving-Entry Level program is not eligible for financial aid. If you do not wish to self-pay, please contact our financial aid office to explore eligibility criteria of alternative financial assistance sources.

  • National Median Salary: $45,260
  • National Potential Annual Job Openings: 209,200

This information is based on data from O*Net, captured on June 2021.

No accreditation or related information have been provided.

No forms have been provided.

Student services will be reduced May 9-20 for ctcLink implementation. Programs, courses, library, tutoring and student activities will continue as scheduled. Students can still email offices or drop off paperwork. Offices will reopen for full service on Monday, May 23.