Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) on Heavy Equipment Operator Training

Our FAQs are grouped by type of course and in special sections for military service members and veterans, to make it simpler for you to find the answers you want to know.

Please look for the category relating to your question and click on one of the listed questions to see the answer.

If your question is not answered here, please call us at (800) 488-7364, or email us at, and we’ll be happy to give you an answer.

FAQ for Military Service Members and Veterans

(NOTE: All Service Members must seek assistance from their local Education Center to ascertain service policy.)

Are you approved for the training of veterans?

Yes, most of National’s training programs are approved for the training of veterans, including all of the Heavy Equipment Operator Programs. If you are eligible to receive GI Bill benefits, you can use them to pay for your course. For more details, visit our website page on this by clicking here.

How do I enroll in a HEOS course and apply for Veterans Benefits?

Individuals who want to use their VA or GI Bill entitlement must enroll in an eligible course, provide a copy of their DD-214, and complete the VA 22-1990 (Application for Education Benefits). NTI will then submit your application for benefit payment.

I am a military veteran. Am I eligible for educational benefits?

For all G.I. Bill programs, your eligible educational benefits portion must be used within 10-15 years of your official discharge date. Eligible chapters are:

  • Chapter 33: Post 9-11 GI Bill
  • Chapter 30: Montgomery GI Bill
  • Chapter 32: VEAP

And in cases where the Veterans Administration has counseled and approved them:

  • Chapter 31: Disabled Veterans
  • Chapter 35: Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance

Reimbursement benefit amounts vary from 55% to 100%, depending on which chapter of the GI Bill you are eligible for.

I will be separating from active duty within a year. What benefits am I eligible for?

Most National Training, Inc. programs are approved for the training of veterans. This includes Active Duty personnel who want to start training before they separate from the military, with either National Truck Driving School or National Training Heavy, Inc.’s Heavy Equipment Operator School.

FAQ for Heavy Equipment Operator Training

Do I have to have a driver's license?

No, you do not.

Do you offer job placement assistance when I graduate?

Yes, we offer nationwide job placement assistance. Although, ethically we certainly cannot guarantee you a job – no one can, your success is ultimately up to you. We will do everything possible to assist you in your job search. We have an extensive list of employers that are eager to give our graduates an opportunity. You will fill out a pre-hire application that will be circulated to employers you choose while you are in training. We strive to place every graduate into an entry-level heavy equipment operator’s position. Student employment prospects are greatly enhanced when the student is open to travel.

How long is the course?

Heavy Now will occur at an exclusive Training Facility in Green Cove Springs, Florida where you will learn how to operate different types of heavy machinery over the course of four-weeks (247.5 hours).

How much do Equipment Operators Earn?

Earnings for construction equipment operators vary. However, as of May 2015 the average yearly earnings for a construction equipment operator were $43,810, or approximately $21 an hour.1

1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Construction Equipment Operators, on the Internet at (visited April 21, 2016).

How much does the school cost?

For the most current fees, please consult one of the following sources; the current Heavy Equipment Operators Catalog, or you can call an admissions counselor for the current tuition fees. (800-488-7364)

I have always heard that you must have at least a year or two of experience to be hired in the heavy equipment industry. Is this true?

No, it’s not true. With the completion of a training certificate from National, you will be afforded opportunities from contractors to “show your stuff.” The industry needs operators to replace the ones leaving and to fill the jobs required by the overwhelming increase in construction projects across the nation. With the right mix of formal training, motivation, and integrity, no experience is required for entry-level jobs. Naturally if all heavy-equipment operators had to have experience to enter the industry, we would have no operators today.

Is there a National Training, Inc.'s Heavy Equipment Operator School near me?

Conducting this type of training is not a simple process. The permits needed, licenses, environmental impact, and the enormous amount of land required to conduct this type of training, make it difficult to teach this type of training everywhere. That is probably why heavy construction operator schools are not found in most communities. In fact the National Training Heavy Equipment Operator School has invested years of time and vast legal resources into obtaining the necessary environmental permits and approvals that are mandated by the Federal Government and the State of Florida. The resident training portion is conducted in sunny North Florida at our exclusive, 350-acre Training Grounds.

Is there an age limit for attending the training?

Yes, you must be 18 years old to attend National Training, Inc.’s Heavy Equipment Operator School.

Is there lodging near the school?

Yes, National Training students receive preferred rates from several motels close to the school. Costs vary, depending on your choice of single room or doubling up with another student. We can say this, the rates you will find to be surprisingly affordable as they are structured for only our students. In addition to these motels, there are many more within a 15-mile radius of the Training Grounds.

What is the outlook for jobs in the future for Heavy Equipment Operators?

Terrific!! Construction is expected to grow 10 percent from 2014 to 20241, faster than the average for all occupations! This is due in part because of the increased spending on the infrastructure to improve roads, bridges, water and sewer systems, and the electrical power grid. In addition to the need for heavy equipment operators to repair and upgrade our infrastructure, these workers will be needed to keep up with the need for more houses, apartments, and other building projects, due to population growth.

Construction equipment operators held 424,800 jobs in 2014, with approximately 43,000 more operators needed by 2024 to keep up with the expected growth.1 In addition to the NEW job opportunities, heavy equipment operators will be needed to replace those leaving the industry.

“The potential for employment in the construction industry is outstanding, to say the least. The best opportunities will be available to heavy equipment operators who have the training and ability to operate MULTIPLE types of equipment.”

Student employment prospects are greatly enhanced when the student is open to travel.

1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Construction Equipment Operators, on the Internet at (visited April 21, 2016).

What type of equipment will I be training on?

Your training will include modern, late model:

  • Bulldozers
  • Excavators
  • Tractor/Loader-backhoes
  • Articulating loaders

National utilizes many and various brands and sizes of heavy equipment machines. All of this equipment is owned, leased, or rented to insure that an adequate number of properly working machines are available for students. Of course, we cannot guarantee that any one specific machine will be available due to maintenance intervals and natural equipment attrition.

Where do I go for Financial Assistance?

We have funding available through financial institutions that offer installment loans, with approved credit, and if you qualify. If you are unemployed, check with your local employment office, since they have numerous programs for which you may be eligible.

National Training, Inc. does not participate in any Federal Title IV programs.

Why is the School located in Florida?

There are many advantages to conducting our resident training in Florida. First, the weather is great most days of the year. No snow days here! Rain-fall does not last long and it’s warm enough to wear shorts almost year round. This all adds up to no student training down time!

Also, we want our students to totally enjoy their training experience. This objective cannot be accomplished through work alone. A fair amount of recreation mixed with your hard work meets the enjoyment objective. Most of Florida’s greatest vacation attractions are located close-by while others takes a two- to three-hour drive from the school’s Training Grounds. Weekend visits to St. Augustine, the nation’s oldest city, driving on the White Sands of Daytona Beach, and visiting Cape Canaveral, Disney World Theme Parks, Universal Studios, Sea World, Silver Springs, and World Golf Village are just a small sampling of the unique to Florida experiences awaiting you. If you just enjoy simpler recreation, great fishing is just a step or two away from our front door.