skip to main
Close Menu

NCDOT Launches Apprenticeships, Training Programs to Fill Vacancies

Two employees work on a job site

RALEIGH – The N.C. Department of Transportation is launching two career-building programs to help fill vacancies for jobs that don't require college degrees.

The department has hundreds of job openings across the state due primarily to promotions and retirements. Many are for entry-level Transportation Workers, which offer on-the-job training that can lead to higher pay and supervisory responsibility within the agency.

Amanda Olive, NCDOT's Human Resources director, said the department has an overall 21% vacancy rate, and that a Transportation Worker has an entry-level starting salary of $38,377.

“You can come in and you will get your experience on the job," Olive said. “You will learn the different skills that you need to know, depending on what area you're in."

Learning on the job is what helped propel Mike Fisher through the ranks at NCDOT after he became a transportation worker with no experience right after high school in Bladen County in 2001.

Fisher advanced in his career, and today he is the bridge maintenance engineer for Highway Division 6, which is based in Fayetteville and covers five southeastern counties.

“As long as you are willing to step through the door, you can take advantage of what DOT has to offer, and you can definitely succeed here," Fisher said.

New Training Programs

The NCDOT is trying two new initiatives to help fill critical needs. The first is known as the Transportation Summer Accelerator Program, offered through the NCDOT's Office of Civil Rights On-the-Job Training Program and Supportive Services Unit​. It is a two-week summer course to help prepare high school students for transportation construction industry careers.

This fall, the department will begin another initiative, called the Transportation Apprenticeships Program, with a goal of hiring 100 high-school graduates to be transportation workers and engineering technicians. They will continue as full-time NCDOT employees after they complete their apprenticeships.

Olive said some of the department's deputy division engineers, county maintenance engineers and other supervisors began as entry-level transportation workers.

“During employee orientation, I like to tell people, the world is your oyster, because you can work your way up to anything," Olive said.

Career Takes Off

Early in his career, Fisher operated small equipment, constructed secondary roads and performed various road maintenance tasks. He received his first promotion in 2008 to beco​me an Engineering Technician I.

In the ensuing years, Fisher took advantage of the free engineering and highway coursework made available by the department. He also earned an associate degree in engineering technology.

​Nowadays, he supervises about 30 employees, assigns work schedules for bridge work, reviews inspection reports, and plans other work.

“I think anybody who comes to DOT can have a good, happy career, if they choose to," Fisher said.

People may learn more about working at this state agency by going to and searching “careers". People may also watch a video​ about Fisher's rise through the organization.


11/14/2023 4:12 PM