Workforce Development Division Provides County with CDL Drivers
In the Driver’s Seat: After obtaining a commercial driver’s license through a Cape May County-sponsored grant program, Robert Campbell is driving a school bus for Upper Township. Pictured with Campbell is Jocelyn McNear, employment counselor with the Cape May County Division of Workforce Development, who provided Campbell career counselling to ensure he successfully completed training.
Driven to Succeed
When Robert Campbell was laid off after 20 years working at a golf course, he needed to find full-time employment and reached out to the Cape May County Division of Workforce Development.
After learning about a commercial driver licenses (CDL) program offered through a special Cape May County training grant, Campbell came to the One Stop Center to see if he qualified and worked with Workforce Development Counselor Jocelyn McNear to navigate and support his path to training and successful completion of training to earn his CDL B license.
A senior citizen, Campbell’s work ethic and drive to gain his license and return to the workforce certainly dispels any misconceptions about older workers re-entering the workforce and being trained for new occupations or careers. In fact, Campbell was immediately hire by Dennis Township to drive a school bus and now is driving a school bus full time for Upper Township School District—and loving it.
“I’m driving special needs children all around Upper Township including runs to Ocean City,” says Campbell. “It’s great because I get to know the kids and I’ll challenge them on the bus with math questions and other things so we have fun and I see the smiles on their faces.” Campbell noted that driving a school bus is a great responsibility that he takes seriously but he finds the job rewarding as well as the steady income.
Counselor McNear works at the One Stop Center in Wildwood for the County’s Division of Workforce Development. The department provides training grants up to $4,000 for in-demand careers and occupations in the county, as well as a paid On-The-Job training program that connect eligible residents with year round employers. McNear began working at the One Stop in 2017 and focuses on adults and dislocated workers and has an extensive background in human services assisting people to reach their career goals.
Campbell was among a group of seven county residents who successfully completed the CDL training program in 2018. Some graduates received paid internships with the county’s Fare Free Transportation Department driving buses, and others found employment throughout the county. Because of its success—and need for commercial drivers—the county started a second training program beginning in March, 2019.
The CDL training grant program was administered by the county Technical School and supported by the Workforce Development Board Cumberland/Salem of which Cape May is a partner.
To provide an integrated system of training, retraining, and employment for job seekers and employers of Cape May County to build a globally competitive workforce, and positively influence the economic development of the service region.
Our goal is to increase employment and training opportunities for the County’s citizens, as well as enhance their productivity and competitiveness in the workplace.