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Program Overview

Using a comprehensive curriculum, students in the Commercial Driver's License (CDL) program at Highlands College will receive online and classroom instruction and real behind-the-wheel driving experience on the skills course, within city limits and on both area highways and interstates. The program is recognized by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) as meeting the Entry-Level Driving Training standards addressing skills, theory/knowledge, tasks, and the duties required of entry-level commercial vehicle drivers. The program meets the needs of students with no prior knowledge or experience in truck driving interested in getting a Class-A CDL.

Informational Sessions (Mandatory)

Attend one of our informational sessions to learn about details of the program, application requirements, class format, class schedules, and funding opportunities. No registration required.

Choose to attend a morning session at 10:00am or an evening session at 6:00pm. All sessions are located at Highlands College, 25 Basin Creek Road, Butte, MT. 

This course is currently being offered four times a year. See dates below. 

Start Dates
Term Info Session Start Date
Fall 2024 TBD TBD
Spring 2024 January 30 February 13
Summer 2024 April 23 May 7
Summer 2024 June 25 July 9

Program Fees

Community Course $4,000

Fees include tuition, drug screen, DOT physical, testing fees, course material to help prepare students for written permit exam and driving practice hours.

Industry Partner Model $2,500

Fees include tuition, drug screen, DOT physical, testing fees, and course material to help prepare students for written permit exam.

Driving practice hours will take place with employer

Admission Requirements/Pre-Requisites

Admission to the program is open to all individuals who can meet the following requirements/pre-requisites:

  • Attend mandatory information session
  • Possess current Montana Driver License and age 18 or older for intrastate license and age 21 or older for interstate license.
  • Pass or hold a current Department of Transportation (DOT) Physical (can be included in fee - find DOT Physical locations in Butte here)
  • A CLP (Commerical Learner's Permit) is not required to enroll in the CDL course. However, it is highly encouraged that students who are interested in taking the course make themselves a testing appointment and begin studying the manual before class starts. Written permit appointments take place at the DMV. 
  • Submit Motor Vehicle Record 
  • Submit Criminal Background Check  
    • Visit and under Public Users click Start Service
    • Cost is $20.00 
    • Print results and attach with application (results expire after 14 days) 
  • Pass Drug Test (included in fee)   
    • Drug Screen appointment will be made for you by Highlands College after all documents have been turned in and you’ve been accepted into the course) 

Class Schedule

We follow a hybrid format which means you will be required to do online modules at home and attend a couple of in-person sessions throughout the course.

Funding Assistance Programs

Butte Job Service
Contact Email Phone
Caitlin O’Neill caitlin.o' 406-594-7374

Career Futures
Contact Email Phone
Sarah DeMoney 406-723-9101
Joe Torpey 406-723-9101

Rural Employment Opportunities (REO)
Contact Email Phone
Lacey Reinhardt 406-461-0504

Veterans Inc.
Contact Email Phone

Jon Ugalde


Connect with us.

We can answer your question and help you get started.

Brooke Samson or 406-496-3779