Most graduations have something in common: they inspire hope for new opportunity. That was definitely the case at the seven Walmart training facilities across the country where associates graduated from our Associate-to-Driver program. This class of 72 associates was the largest group to date.
This class was also unique because it was the first time the program was available to associates from Walmart stores, Sam’s Clubs and Sam’s Club Supply Chain. Until now, only Walmart Supply Chain and Transportation associates could participate.
And we’re expanding the program even further, making it available to more and more associates across the country who want to become Walmart drivers. By the beginning of next year, any associate who lives within 250-miles of a Transportation Office can join.
As of today, 191 associates have completed the Associate-to-Driver program. Now as proud holders of a Class A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) and as members of Walmart’s Private Fleet, they’re on their way to making as much $110,000 in their first year as a Walmart driver.
Ashley Milacek was one of the first store associates to graduate.
Ashely is from Store 185 in Gainesville, Texas. She epitomizes motivation. Since joining Walmart in 2014 she’s had five jobs in two different stores. She sees a challenge, conquers it, and looks for the next. Overnights, front-end, online grocery and GM – she’s done them all. So, when she heard about the Associate-to-Driver program, she didn’t hesitate. And even though her family was surprised, she said the program gave her all the tools to do the job safely.
Walmart created the Associate-to-Driver program in December 2021 with the hope of seeing many such successes. The goal is to give associates the opportunity to grow their career in new and unexpected ways.
And it’s working!
Another inspiring story is Ronny Suggs’. Ronny is from DC 6094 in Bentonville, Arkansas. Ronny had been at Walmart, but as he put it, he hit a rough spot in his life. And even though he’d served his country, including several tours of duty in Iraq, he found himself homeless. But he didn’t give up. He came back to Walmart in Supply Chain, then joined the Associate-to-Driver program. He said the opportunity has been life-changing for him.
Walmart has been and always will be a place of opportunity – a place where a person can come for a good job and end up building a great career. And in addition to being a source of pride, Walmart’s Private Fleet has always been a competitive advantage, enabling us to deliver Every Day Low Costs in order to make good on our commitment to Every Day Low Prices.