Survey: Only 13.5% planned for career in transit

Posted on June 6, 2008 by Metro Staff


Only one of eight people who work in public transit planned for a career in this industry. In a job satisfaction survey recently conducted by, 13.5 percent of the respondents said they had transit career aspirations while still in school. About seven out of 10 (71.2 percent) said it was more or less an accident that they work in transit, and the remaining 15.3 percent said they ended up working in transit for “other” reasons.


“These numbers suggest that there’s much room for improvement in building interest in transit as a career goal among high school and college students,” said Steve Hirano, president of, an online job board for the public transportation industry. For comparison, Hirano, the former editor of METRO Magazine, noted that many, if not most, professional journalists aspired to the field of journalism as students.


“Transit leaders need to become more adept at persuading young people, the so-called Millennials, that the transit industry can provide interesting, satisfying careers,” Hirano said. “We should be emphasizing the critical role that buses and rail systems will play in mitigating global warming and how the younger generation can play a key role in that process in the decades ahead.”


Hirano said the importance of attracting talented, committed individuals into public transportation is growing every day. “With the leading edge of the Baby Boom generation reaching retirement age in the next few years, the transit industry is going to lose some of its most experienced people, up and down the managerial ladder,” he said. “There will be a rising need for new college grads and early-career workers to backfill the vacancies that are created.”


A total of 1,448 transit system employees in the U.S. and Canada responded to the survey, which also gauged their general job satisfaction levels. Despite the fact that relatively few respondents had planned to work in the transit field, nearly three out of four said they were “satisfied” (30.5 percent) or “very satisfied” (42.9 percent) with their jobs. Only 4.6 percent said they were “not satisfied,” and 22.0 percent said they were “mostly satisfied.”


The respondents represented a variety of job categories, including executive/management, maintenance, operations, planning, engineering, human resources, accounting, information systems, marketing/communications and safety and security. The majority of them work for transit systems that are APTA members.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

ElDorado Mobility's redesigned website connects customers to products

The website's many online tools include in-depth model pages featuring product photos and detailed descriptions, along with select model popular floorplans and color selectors.

Chicago RTA awards $7M to projects serving seniors, people with disabilities

The funds are dedicated to removing barriers to transportation service and expanding available transportation mobility options.

Q'Straint webinar to discuss rearward-facing securement

This presentation will explore developing ridership trends facing transit providers, offer an overview of the current research on rearward facing securement, and examine how emerging technologies are addressing the previous shortcomings of primitive rearward securement applications.

Senior housing provider partners with Lyft for pilot program

The partnership will allow Brookdale residents to book a Lyft ride on-demand or schedule in advance through a concierge in their community.

New Houston Metro pilot increases access for paratransit riders

Set to launch in January, the program will allow those riders that use MetroLift paratransit buses to ride those buses to a transit center and then transfer to a regular fixed-route bus

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment


Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

LCT Magazine

Global Resource For Limousine and Bus Transportation

Please sign in or register to .    Close