Popping the perception: Negative stereotypes and the next generation

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We participate in the ‘Touch-A-Truck” event in our town when we’re home. We do so because we both think it’s important to show the younger generation the big trucks, get some of them interested in the business, and show that we’re not all toothless, uneducated dirtbags. We don’t get to attend as much as we’d like, but we do take every opportunity to let little ones explore the truck that we get.

We have some friends who also do the events, and they told us of an experience that really speaks to the public perception of professional drivers. Their truck has custom bookshelves built all along the top of the cab, and the shelves are full of books – it looks like a library inside the cab. A little boy climbed up into the cab and made the statement, “Look daddy, truckers can read!”

Yes, Bobby, truckers can read. They can also do math and and manage time. A great majority of them even take baths and have families waiting at home for them. Yes, they have homes.

TruckerBuddy logoTrucker Buddy is a great program that allows the kids to understand all the implications of being a professional driver. We have several friends involved in the program, and if you have an opportunity to participate, please do. We’re actually on a waiting list for our local elementary school – they have a large number of participating drivers in our area.

The teachers use the information the drivers pass along to teach everything from science to geography, and to give the kids an idea of what it takes to actually be a driver. It involves a lot more than just holding a steering wheel.

We have a distinct problem with public perception in the industry, and can’t seem to get the idea across to the adults, so educating the next generation is the most logical step. I’d like to live in a world where little Bobby isn’t surprised that truckers read – or write, or shower on a regular basis.

Get involved, promote a better image and improve the public perception – sounds like a win/win/win.

Let’s do this.

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