South Carolina Trucking Association worried as fewer young people enter profession

Published: Aug. 2, 2021 at 8:02 AM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - The South Carolina Trucking Association wants people to know truckers are essential workers too.

As more drivers age out of the profession, experts are expressing concern as there’s not enough young workers signing on.

“It’s other professions too in the trucking industry. It’s not just drivers - it’s technicians, it’s operators, it’s the dispatch. It’s every part of our supply chain. And the concern is that if we don’t find enough people interested in these positions, it will impact every bit of our quality of life,” said Jill McCain, the communications and outreach director for the South Carolina Trucking Association.

The association said 48% of South Carolina CDL holders are older than 52 years old, and more than 53% of skilled construction workers across the country are age 45 or older.

“There has been a growing stigma against skilled trades and skilled professions and going into a technical training program. You know the movement in our culture has been shifting more and more to four year colleges,” McCain said.

To combat that, there is an event as part of the “Be Pro Be Proud” campaign on Monday outside of Top Golf in Myrtle Beach from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

McCain said there will be interactive and hands-on opportunities to learn about eight high-wage and highly-skilled professions. These include heavy equipment operators, forklift operators, diesel technicians, commercial truck drivers, carpenters, utility bucket linemen, welder and computer numerical control (CNC) operators.

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