Driver Spotlight: Misty Robles
As she neared her 40th birthday, Misty Robles, a single mother who had spent much of her twenties and thirties working two jobs, sought to give her professional life a restart. Spending days working in public education and evenings working in retail was exhausting and was not going to be financially sustainable in the long run.
“I needed to do something different. And I needed to do something quickly,” she said.
She was first introduced to the idea of trucking school by a friend in the trucking industry, but it wasn’t quite what she had in mind at the time.
“Being a truck driver was never on my radar,” she said. “I like to stay in my little box and it takes a lot to get me out of that.”
But after about a year of on and off coaxing, Misty figured she’d give it a shot. She liked that trucking school only lasted a few weeks, and by waiting until January, she was able to take advantage of a New Year promotion and save some more money.
While other company recruiters promised she’d be on the road and on her own in a week or two, DTI’s promise of thorough, safety-minded, one-on-one training was far more appealing by comparison. She also liked the weekly home time offered by DTI; a perk uncommon in this industry. In the end, DTI was the only place to which she decided to apply.
Like any new driver, Misty had her apprehensions about life on the road. But her biggest concern had nothing to do about the hours or the work load. Her biggest concern was that the truck would just be too big for her five foot frame.
“The biggest thing for me was just the sheer size of the truck and trailer, but now that I’m used to it, I’m probably more comfortable in the truck than in my tiny car,” she said.
For new drivers especially, Misty stresses that the learning curve might be a little more gradual in trucking than it is in other jobs. She reiterates what another driver told her when she was feeling like she just wasn’t getting it.
“She told me to give it a year to get used to everything. I kept that in the back of my head. Most jobs, they expect you to know everything in 60 or 90 days without questions. But with trucking there are just so many things you have to get used to. It just takes time.”
Misty runs a traditional schedule, leaving Tuesdays and returning the following weekend, and makes close to three times what she did working two jobs before. She has been with DTI for several years and recently tallied her 500,000th safe mile behind the wheel.
“It’s a hard job,” she says. “…but it’s worth it.”
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