Cuyahoga Community College, Cleveland, Ohio, has dedicated a new Truck Driving Academy, the first element of the college's new Regional Transportation Institute.

Each class runs for three weeks with hands-on behind-the-wheel training. At the conclusion of the program, students will be prepared to pass the test for an Ohio Commercial Driver's Class A License. The academy hopes to graduate and place 60 students within its first year of operation.

The Regional Transportation Institute will also be offering supply chain logistics training that will support the growing local, regional, national and global requirement for supply chain professionals. RTI will provide seminars, certificate programs and credit based classes that will be combined with intensive hands-on supply chain simulations to give students a comprehensive globally recognized education.

"The Truck Driving Academy, and the Regional Transportation Institute, are designed to capitalize on the significant job growth underway in these fields," said Cuyahoga Community College President Jerry Sue Thornton. "The Cleveland area is fortunate to be located at the heart of the trucking and transportation industries, and these are fields that provide good-paying jobs and careers."

Nationally, the trucking industry employs nearly 10 million people, of which 2.8 million are truck drivers. Industry experts predict the need for new drivers will increase by 3.8 percent annually over the next decade.