Take stock in your accomplishments

Kelly Aguinaldo
Posted on April 18, 2014
Kelly Aguinaldo is managing editor for SCHOOL BUS FLEET. Here, Shane Kirley shares with her his top professional accomplishments.

Kelly Aguinaldo is managing editor for SCHOOL BUS FLEET. Here, Shane Kirley shares with her his top professional accomplishments.

We’ve all had personal and professional accomplishments that we’re particularly proud of.    

So far for me, my top professional accomplishments are learning and writing about the ins and outs of an industry that I knew very little about when I started working at SBF and, also, driving a school bus.

As I shared in a previous blog post, the goal of my jaunt was to gain some insight on what it’s like behind the wheel of a yellow bus to better inform my work for SBF. Since I do have a full-time job, the goal was not to obtain my CDL, but driving a school bus was a big step for me since I had never driven a vehicle that large before.   

Shane Kirley, who, as we’ve reported in the past, has long been interested in the pupil transportation industry, has obtained his CDL, and he tells me it is one of his “best accomplishments.”   

“I’ve wanted a CDL for quite a while,” he says. “I felt I wasn’t able for much of my life, but after encouragement from some very important people in my life, I decided to take the CDL written test at the DMV. I passed the first time. The proudest moment for me was filling out and obtaining a Department of Transportation medical card and 19A bus driver paperwork. I am a registered school bus driver with New York state. That’s a great thing to be able to say.”

After he received his CDL, Kirley says it was about a year before he was able to begin training. The company he works for — Madison Cortland ARC — requires 18 months of driving history on a regular Class D license before it will allow an employee to drive any agency vehicle.
“Once I began training, I found that driving a bus came natural to me, and the knowledge I already had made it much easier,” Kirley says.   

Kirley works as transportation clerk for Madison Cortland ARC, and he also recently began working for a local Blue Bird Corp. dealer one day a week as a delivery driver. This will, of course, enable him to drive school buses regularly, and it is something he looks forward to since he finds driving buses “relaxing and fulfilling.”     

“I’m pretty proud to be starting the new job with the bus dealer,” Kirley told me prior to starting the position. "I hope to find something more permanent with them someday, as I feel I can go far in this part of the industry. While safety and transportation are still very important to me, I think my skills and knowledge would be better used at a dealership or [somewhere] similar.”  

The accomplishments that we’re most proud of often require us to put in a lot of our time and effort, and Kirley suggests that it’s important not to give up on your dreams.

“Just before you feel like giving up on a dream, things will begin to work out in your favor,” he says. “With enough determination anything is possible, and having support from others around you is very important.”

What are some of your top professional accomplishments and/or some of your proudest moments on the job? Send an e-mail to [email protected] or post comments below.

Until next time,

Kelly Aguinaldo
Managing Editor

Comments ( 2 )
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  • Kristine Nyack

     | about 5 years ago

    What a great story about accomplishments/milestones, what they mean to us and why they are so important! I Graduated with a 4yr. degree in Business Admin. with a major in Human Resource Mgt. and Industrial Sys. & Procedures then got lucky to land a great job and spent 12yrs. with Amica Ins. and supported my family of 4. One day a friend asked me "why don't you get your license to drive school bus?" I put in an application with Laidlaw and was hired by Yolanda Edwards who has 35+ yrs. in the industry. I began the process; DOT physical, paperwork to study to pass the 4 endorsement tests: gen. knowledge, school bus, passenger and air brake to obtain my CDL Permit which then allowed for my training to begin which consisted of 20hrs. classroom work and 15hrs. behind the wheel training. With much hard work, perseverance and dedication, on 3/5/2008 I got my CDL to drive school bus and it was the best day of my life! I was lucky to have a great trainer named Richard Parzych who trained me, and receive a great foundation from Laidlaw and because of this, I decided that I'd like to become a trainer and "pass the torch" on to the "next generation" in honor of Richard. It has now been Six yrs., Even on the worst day, I still have a smile on my face and am so thankful I'm doing what I love and that I make a difference! Dreams are important and when they are achieved, they hold a special place in our hearts. This January I got lucky enough to come on board with a great company like Student Transportation of America and work with an awesome boss with 35+ yrs. experience named Barbara Brigham puts this dream within reach; my future looks bright, but we must not forget that success involves getting the big picture, leaving yourself an out, keeping a proper following distance, anticipate the unexpected and of course teamwork!

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