Ohio Announces Commercial Truck Driver Student Aid Awards

COLUMBUS, Ohio (2022-04-01) — 

A total of 30 schools will share $2.5 million to help Ohio students seeking to earn a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL).

The Ohio Department of Higher Education today announced the recipients of funds through the Commercial Truck Driver Student Aid Program. The program promotes and encourages job growth for Ohio’s commercial drivers through educational training. A total of $5 million in funding is available through the program over the next two years. A second round of funding will be forthcoming later this year.

The funds, awarded to eligible institutions through an application process, will be disbursed in the form of grants and loans to students who enroll in approved CDL training programs at those institutions. The Student Aid program was originally enacted in the state’s biennial budget bill (HB110), with additional parameters of the program set forth in SB166, signed by Governor Mike DeWine last December.

“This program provides another opportunity for students to prepare for a successful career at a reduced cost and will create a ripple effect that will benefit business and industry statewide,” Governor DeWine said.

The program will provide financal aid to in-state students who complete a CDL program and agree to reside and be employed in Ohio for a minimum of one year upon completion.

“Governor DeWine and the Ohio General Assembly are to be commended for this important investment, which will help people from across the state earn their CDL and ensure that Ohio companies can begin to address the pressing need for new drivers,” said Chancellor Randy Gardner. “We know that commercial truck drivers are a vital part of Ohio’s economy, and these awards will help this in-demand occupation to grow and thrive.”

“The State of Ohio took a great step forward to be a leader in finding an innovative way to support the training for in-demand jobs that the Federal government cannot,” said Tom Balzer, president and CEO of the Ohio Trucking Association. “The Governor, Ohio Legislature, and the Department of Higher Education work cooperatively with the industry to make sure we have a streamlined program that provides targeted assistance while putting protections in place to have Ohio-educated drivers get employed by Ohio businesses. This is what public-private partnership needs to look like and I hope this will serve as a model for other states to follow.”

CDL programs receiving awards qualified as eligible through the Ohio Department of Public Safety, allowing students enrolled in these programs to be candidates for grants and loans.

A complete list of recipients can be found on the ODHE website at https://www.ohiohighered.org/cdl.

About the Ohio Department of Higher Education

The Ohio Department of Higher Education is a Cabinet-level agency for the Governor of the State of Ohio that oversees higher education for the state. The agency’s main responsibilities include authorizing and approving new degree programs, managing state-funded financial aid programs and developing and advocating policies to maximize higher education’s contributions to the state and its citizens.

Contact Information: 

Jeff Robinson
Office: 614.752.9487
Email: jrobinson@highered.ohio.gov