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Rider's Almanac Blog

Know Your Operator

Know your operator: Leah Ham

Posted by John Komarek | Friday, January 20, 2023 8:00:00 AM

After 20 years of working in the print industry, Leah Ham needed to find a new career.

“I took an interest inventory and it said I’d be interested in trains,” Ham said. “So, I thought that I should look at Metro Transit.”

She’s ridden transit for her entire adult life and even has an uncle who works here, but never considered it until 8 years ago.

“I asked my uncle about applying and he told me to go for it,” she said. “His support helped me.”

Ham recalls the uncertainty of applying without a Commercial Drivers License but found that training with people with experience helped her out as she sought hers.

“Like many people, I didn’t pass the test the first time,” Ham said. “But don’t let that discourage you. Anyone can learn how to do this if they put in the time.”

Today, she enjoys her newfound career and even encouraged others in her family to apply at Metro Transit, including her son-in-law (now a mechanic) and brother-in-law (a fellow bus operator).

“It’s fun to see them when I’m out on the road,” she said. “Some shifts, I see my brother-in-law multiple times as we pass each other’s buses, and we wave at each other.”

Inside the garage, Ham found that drivers are also like family – sharing the highs and lows, and being there for each other.

“Whatever you’ve experienced, someone else has most likely been there before,” she said.

Beyond her coworkers, the people she serves keeps her coming back every day.

“I still ride the bus myself. I know what it’s like to be there waiting – especially in the winter,” Ham said. “It’s reassuring to know that someone will be there to pick you up.” 

Full- and part-time positions available!

Fast track your way to a new career! Come prepared to apply and interview all in one visit for full- or part-time positions! You can also apply online in advance to further speed up the process. Check this list of what you’ll need to apply.

There's no experience required – we'll give you the PAID training you need. You'll earn $26.16 per hour to start and after one year of employment, your hourly wage rate will increase to $27.80 per hour. You'll receive outstanding benefits, such as health care, annual salary increases, a pension plan, an unlimited-ride transit pass. Plus there's growth opportunities. Many Metro Transit managers started their careers as bus drivers. 

Don’t wait, apply for your new career today!