N.M. community college to resurrect CDL truck driving course to meet ever-growing demand

July 23, 2014
Statistics show that there is an increased demand for CDL drivers. New Mexico-based Mesalands Community College is stepping up to help train students to meet that demand.

The return of a CDL truck driving course may be among new programs at Mesalands Community College designed to train students for high-demand jobs and careers, according to President Thomas Newsom.

Newsom said along with reviewing current programs, the college is exploring new course areas that have a high level of job placement and demand.

Resurrecting the CDL program, he said, is one possibility the college is studying. Currently, Newsom said he envisions a partnership with a trucking company to ensure proper equipment is available. The college could restore its CDL training course west of its wind energy center in Tucumcari, he said.

"Statistics show that there is an increased demand for CDL drivers," Newsom said. "Mesalands could produce the skilled drivers needed to fill those spots."

As his second year as president approaches, Newsom said his administration is reviewing its curriculum of associate's degree, bachelor's degree preparation and certificate programs to ensure that programs remain affordable and can be completed within a reasonable time.

That, he said, is the best way to assure successful student outcomes.

"The true success of our institution is the outcome of our students," Newsom said. "There are many pathways for success that students can pursue at Mesalands."

For the coming year, he said, tuition and fees will remain flat for Mesalands students.

"We want to provide students with a high level of education, while making sure it remains affordable to them," Newsom said. Keeping tuition and fees stable, he said, "may also help to continue the trend of increased enrollment we have seen from last year and over the summer break."

Quay County Sun, Tucumcari, N.M.

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