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California teacher spends summer trucking to help driver shortage, high school students

A high school teacher outside of San Jose, Calif., spent his summer trucking to pitch in during a severe truck driver shortage.

Dave Dein is Patterson High School’s truck driving school coordinator. During the school year, Dein teaches students the basics of trucking and prepares them for life on the road. This summer, he’s practicing what he preaches, Marlee Ginter reported for CBS13 Sacramento.

“I’ve literally seen lives transformed because of this class. That’s the reason I do this.  Because it’s needed,” Dein told CBS13.

The money he makes driving this summer will reportedly go into a scholarship fund for his students. Morning Star Trucking has vowed to match the earnings Dein makes this summer and put it into the Next Generation In Trucking Foundation. 

“What he’s doing is amazing,” Dein’s former student, Ricardo Jimenez, told CBS13. “I think it’s great that it benefits these students.”

Jimenez said Dein has always gone above and beyond for his students, adding “that’s just the person he is.”

“Well, the thing is, I don’t consider this work,” Dein said. “I’m not giving up anything. I love this, for one thing, and to do it for such a good cause? That’s even better.”

Trucking companies in California and beyond are desperately trying to fill thousands of open driver positions. According to the American Trucking Associations, the industry will need to hire 1.1 million new drivers — an average of 110,000 per year — in the next decade in order to meet freight demands.