American truckers have a unique perspective on life. After all, they live both on – and off – the road. They see parts of our country that few people do, and they experience things that few people ever will. And whether you're thinking of becoming a truck driver, have a family member who drives a truck for a living, or just want to learn more about the life of a truck driver, our drivers are ready to show you their world.
With blogs and videos covering everything from life on the road to some of the weird and wonderful things they've seen along the way, they're here to pull back the curtain on what being a truck driver is really like, so you can get a glimpse of the CDL life.
We had the great pleasure to be joined with Caroline H, Diamond Driver and a member of our coveted Million Miler program. She shares her incredible tale of why she loves stepping behind that wheel.
“I have been with Swift for 13 years and am now an OTR Refrigerated Driver. The best part of my job is traveling—I really enjoy seeing all 48 states. It's very rewarding when I make on time loads and get customers their product where they need to be.”
An individual with as much dedication and passion for our industry could find success with any company they desire. However, Caroline explains why she made her choice and is proud to be a part of our Swift family.
“Swift has supported me through my trucking career by giving me the tools I needed to be successful. It has been extremely nice to have the support behind the scenes and customer service who can make and schedule our appointment, and get you directions and particulars on customers. They allow me to do my job on the road without having to worry.”
Achieving the level of success Caroline has can be quite the daunting task but she’s not afraid to share what has made her successful throughout her decade long journey.
“To become a Million Miler, you have to stick with it. It's not an easy job all the time and sometimes it can be hard. It is very rewarding, but it takes work.”
The trucking industry has its shares of ups and down. Finding an organization with both freight and consistency can be a challenge.
“Swift offers stability. There are all kinds of people in this world. Some like a lot of risk, some don't. Swift is an awesome company to stay with if you want a stable, long career.”
Though predominately a male industry, Caroline is proud to be one of the elite female drivers traveling on the road today.
“It can be very rewarding being a lady out here! I often get praise from my customers for it.”
Everyone has a unique history when it comes to choosing a way of living. Trucking may not be everyone’s first choice when it comes to careers, but many people have found their calling commanding a semi-truck in the palm of their hands.
“My background is in accounting, and worked in an office for most of my life. I never saw myself doing this, but the impossible and unimaginable is amazing when it happens.”
Swift Academy graduate and member of our ocean container division, Justin S., has driven for Swift for over a year. He shared his story of joining the transportation industry.
"I looked at all the other driving schools, evaluated the pros and cons but none of them had a better program than Swift."
Justin, like many of his peers, was worried that the academy would not live up to his expectations. Fortunately, he learned that was far from the case!
"The instructors at the Swift Academy were amazing. They loved what they did and that encouraged all of the students to see what kind of future they could have in this industry."
Justin was younger than the typical student, eager to step into a trucking career. However, his desire to get behind the wheel stems from both his appetite for driving as well as his aspiration for a life-long career.
"I've always kind of had a passion for driving. You know, with the trucks, fast cars, motorcycles - you name it, I've ridden it. And I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to get paid for doing something that I love. I've worked so many other jobs where I've been unhappy working for somebody else, not doing something I enjoy. I love my life now. I couldn't see it any other way."
Thank you, Justin, for completing Swift Academy, becoming a professional driver, and being a top notch member of our fleet!
Driver mentor Anayda S. loves trucking more than anything, and despite her family's reservations, found great success in this industry and as a member of our family.
"My brothers all drive trucks and that's what I wanted to do. My oldest brother didn't want me to get into the industry, so I took his advice at first...but the itch kept clawing at me. Eventually, I decided to take the plunge and become a truck driver. Thankfully, everything has gone amazing since I've started and I'm very blessed."
Every mentor has their own unique approach to handling their students. Anayda is no different. Her dedication for the industry is also heavily invested in training the next generation of truckers.
"The first thing I'm concerned with as a mentor is safety. You have to keep talking with the student and stay up with them. I can't sleep when I have a student because the student needs to learn. Every moment I have with them that they're behind the wheel is important. I feel good knowing that they've got guidance and support when they're training."
At the end of the day, Anayda is a true representative of dedication and passion in our industry.
"The thing I'm most proud of in my life is my job and my truck. When I drive down the road, looking at my equipment through the mirror, I know that not everyone can do what I do – and that is very exciting!"
Star driver and premier driver mentor Bill L. has a storied history with Swift. He's been a member of our family for over 23 years, traveled over 2 million miles, is an illustrious level 4 Diamond Driver, and has mentored over 200 students throughout his career.
"I became a mentor because my Terminal Leader in Syracuse recommended it to me. I trained my first student and was hooked! I have been training ever since. I like meeting new people and having someone in the truck that I can talk to."
After training so many students, Bill has collected not only some unique experiences, but fond memories of time spent with them as well.
"My favorite experience with a student was when we went to Florida and picked up a helicopter. They let us go In and take pictures while they were loading it. My student was very excited to visit Florida—it was their first time. We delivered it successfully from Miami to Phoenix."
Fully embracing his role as both a mentor and teacher, Bill constantly strives to improve himself for not just his betterment, but for the betterment of his students.
"There's a lot of different reasons to become a driver Mentor. Some people just do it for the extra income, but it's a lot more than that. And once you get into it, you realize that there's some great times to be had. And I think you actually learn more by training someone because you get asked questions you never asked yourself. It has made me a much better driver, and much safer driver. "
Bill's definition of success is clean, clear, and simple.
"Getting through everyday safely and watching that add up to becoming a Diamond Driver and Million Mile driver."
We couldn't be more proud to have Bill as a part of our family!
We had the immense pleasure with speaking with veteran driver Elisha H. recently. She has over 10 years of experience in our industry with a big heart and an even bigger drive for to succeed.
"I love truck driving because I get to be a little of everything. I bring food, building materials, and medicine to people who need it, It's just fun to be able to say 'Hey, I was part of building that'."
As the saying goes, "if you bought it, a trucker brought it". Elisha recollects her fondest memory of why she loves trucking and why she sits behind the wheel each and every day.
"I brought a bunch of supplies and materials to down to Louisiana for a university. They needed these products to help finish the construction their dorms. I thought that was really cool, to be a part of housing all those new and up-and-coming students. It was a great feeling."
Looking back on her career, Elisha reaffirms her choice and commitment as a part of our family.
“Being with Swift has been a whole lot better for me [than other companies]. They took me in like family and it's been the best move. “
With a heart of gold and a truck to match, Elisha is one of the most passionate and skilled drivers in our fleet and we couldn't be more excited to see where she progresses at Swift next.
The trucking industry is known for being more collectively diverse, and the Swift family is no different. We recently caught up with driver mentor, Babafemi O., and talked about what inspired him to seek new opportunities.
“I used to be a car salesman back home in Nigeria. So when I got here and I looked around at what I can do, a friend of mine encouraged me to become a truck driver. I thought about it and decideded to go with it.”
Becoming a truck driver isn’t for everyone but Babafemi shares why he has found success in our industry.
“I love driving, so I take driving as a passion. And there is great money to be made, which is why I decided to be a truck driver. “
It isn’t just a love for the industry that drive Babafemi to get behind the wheel every day. Sharing his passion and knowledge with the next generation of truck drivers is another way he finds fulfilment.
“I became a mentor because I just feel that I should impart the knowledge I have in trucking driving to other people. Somebody gave me the career. So I just feel I should give other people a career, too. I want to pass knowledge onto them.”
We know there are many options out there when joining our industry. Babafemi reaffirms his decision and why he continues to be a part of our dedicated family.
“I love Swift and I want to continue to be with Swift. I made good money with Swift, and ended up building a new house back home for my mom. And now I have a project that I have for myself. That is honor. So I'm happy with Swift, and for these reasons, I am still with them.”
Babafemi is one of the most welcoming and charismatic drivers in our family. If you're ever find yourself in Phoenix, you'll find him eagerly awaiting a new friend to make.
Being able to provide for your family with a strong and stable career is a feeling unlike any other. One of our beloved dedicated drivers, Gregg K sat down with us and shared his journey into why he joined our industry.
“When I came into the Industry, I had a daughter on the way. At the time, I was working 2 jobs, but I wanted something stable, something that paid more. I went to the Academy and earned my CDL with no problems. Now, I am on a dedicated account doing Flatbed and I am home daily. She is my light, so it helps a lot!”
Swift offers many different lines of business across the nation. Each driver has their preference (depending on their location), but Gregg explains why he prefers Flatbed above them all.
“I like Flatbed because it's more physical, rather than sitting. You get out of the truck and strap, unstrap, and whatever you need to do to get that load delivered safely.”