(NewsNation) — More girls are hitting the street as truck drivers and discovering freedom alongside the way in which.
For some, it’s a dream come true.
“When I was a little girl, my father and I would go on trips, and I’d see these big trucks going down the road. I told myself, one day, I’m gonna drive one of those trucks,” Vanita Johnson mentioned on “Morning in America.”
Johnson is a Class A CDL driver and teacher. She says the pandemic pushed her to make her wildest dream come true.
“I had just got my teacher’s certificate. So I would have been a first-year teacher teaching sixth-grade math. And COVID hit and it was just totally overwhelming. I did not want to do my students a disservice so I resigned,” Johnson mentioned.
Now, Johnson owns her personal enterprise.
“I’m an owner-operator, I now run a business. It’s my business,” she mentioned.
For Carla Holmes, truck driving was a profession pivot she says she didn’t know she wanted.
“I was OK with living the rest of my life paycheck to paycheck, and today I don’t live like that. I don’t have to live that way,” she instructed NewsNation.
Holmes mentioned a two-week journey in her husband’s massive rig helped her change the course of her life. She mentioned she was a case supervisor at a drug facility earlier than coming into the trade.
She instructed her husband, “If I’m gonna be in the truck with you, I want to make money, too.”
After 5 months of faculty, she earned her business driver’s license.
The girls say they’ve discovered freedom within the experience.
“It’s a lot of freedom,” Johnson mentioned.
Holmes provides, “I love it. I get to see the country, I get to travel the country, I get to go to all kinds of states. I see so many sunrises and sunsets and just beautiful scenery.”
They say trucking has offered a stage of economic freedom they didn’t suppose was attainable and inspired different girls to leap behind the wheel.
Women in Trucking President and CEO Ellen Voie careworn that the trade has advanced considerably through the years from security to work-life steadiness, saying, “This isn’t your grandpa’s trucking industry anymore.”
“The industry has changed a lot, there’s so much more technology on the trucks that makes them much safer, makes it much easier to operate. Also, the pay is the same whether you’re a female or a male, it doesn’t matter, the pay is the same. Because you’re either paid by the hour, the mile, the load,” Voie mentioned on “Morning in America.” “Companies are really doing a lot of work to get drivers home, so much more. So work-life balance. And there are jobs where you can like haul trash or you know, make deliveries during the day and be home at night with your kids.”