Celadon Group, Inc. (NYSE: CGI) and Celadon Trucking Services announced today that it has welcomed and graduated its first class of driver training school candidates at its Indianapolis headquarters. Quality Drivers expects to train approximately 400 - 500 new drivers while creating jobs nationwide in the first year of the program. Based on the individual driver, the program offers a three to five-week training curriculum, both in the classroom and on the road. Celadon plans to bring in overlapping classes of driver trainees every two weeks. The initial groups and classes are being taught at Celadon’s corporate facility in Indianapolis, but the company today announced plans to build a new, $5.7 million, 61,000 square-foot training facility at 9050 E. 33 rd Street, near its Indianapolis headquarters. Plans for the new facility include dorm rooms, a cafeteria, workout room, basketball/racquetball court, Wi-Fi, and a state of the art driver training road course. The company has set a tentative construction completion date for the 3 rd quarter of 2013.
“Driver recruitment and driver retention is a long term challenge within the industry,” said Paul Will, Vice Chairman, President and CEO. “We realize that establishing the Quality Drivers school and the Celadon training program are the next logical steps in ensuring that we have sufficient numbers of qualified drivers to fill our seats and meet our growth expectations. Logistically, locating the driver training school in Indiana is a sound business decision that provides access to the state’s vast resources, but it also gives Celadon another opportunity to give back to the state of Indiana by contributing significant jobs numbers right here in Indianapolis. We’re extremely happy and proud to continue our commitment to the local and state economies.”
Along with Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, Indiana Governor Mike Pence joined Celadon executives to formally announce the new driver training school and highlight Celadon’s commitment to the state of Indiana. “Celadon’s commitment to Hoosiers reflects a growing confidence in the business climate in our state,” said Pence. “At the heart of the nation, our convenient location and expansive transportation infrastructure strengthen Indiana’s reputation as the ‘Crossroads of America.’ Combine this with our competitive tax climate and skilled workforce and, logistically speaking, Indiana works for business.”