So You Want to Be an OC Transpo Driver


By Irene Grose

High school is scary in a lot of ways – but one one of the biggest stress factors is figuring out what the heck we’re supposed to do with our lives after graduation. And so, with so many careers out there, it’s common to focus on the boring, overrated jobs that everyone chooses – teacher, doctor, engineer, etc.

Unfortunately, many students forget the one rewarding career that they see on an almost daily basis: an OC Transpo driver.

Here’s a simple test to see if this may be the career for you: are you a punctual person? Do you get commended for your reliability? Do you aspire to have a job where you get to help people every day? If your answer to any of these questions was yes, stop reading now. This is likely not the path for you.


Step 1: Do your research

Every career path deserves careful consideration. Look at you, reading this article in your spare time already! Pat yourself on the back for a job well done.


Step 2: Observe people in the field

This one’s easy for most Lisgarites – just start paying attention to the driver on the bus ride to school! While it may be tempting to keep your eyes glued to the clock when you realize you’re about to be late (again), focus on the driver: this research will be critical for the next few steps.

Please note that a waiting time of 15 minutes or more at the bus stop is completely to be expected – don’t worry about being in the wrong place! As long as you’re standing directly at the stop, facing the road, and holding out your card with your right arm while humming the national anthem, no bus driver will accidentally pass you by.

Weather conditions can occasionally send a bus running off schedule, though, so take a look at the forecast too; if it’s snowy, rainy windy, cloudy, sunny, too hot, too cold, hailing, foggy or slightly damp, there is a strong chance that your bus may have been thrown off schedule.


Step 3: Start developing your skills

It’s never too early to start practising for the career you want. Equipment is always handy here; just as future doctors may start off with a first aid kit, future OC Transpo workers are encouraged to purchase air horns and practise clearing the stairwells with them as they struggle to get to their next class.

Although this step may seem slightly more difficult than the first two – for those less privileged of of us who don’t have busses on hand that they can drive around – fear not. As the writer of this guide, I am highly qualified in providing other ways of practising for the daily duties you can expect on the job.

Firstly, start offering rides to all of your friends. Although a driver’s license would be useful here, it is not strictly necessary. Set up a time to meet them, and make sure you always show up earlier than they expect – 10 to 15 minutes is appropriate. This demonstrates how responsible you are as a person.


Step 4: Profit

Congratulations! Your hard work and effort has paid off and presumably you are now an OC Transpo driver. Celebrate the victory with any friends you still have left.

As you can see, the process of becoming an OC Transpo driver is a long and arduous one. People may ask you questions or shout bits of encouragement at you, such as, “Did you just say you don’t have a driver’s license?!” or “Your route goes in the opposite direction!”

As a public transit worker, you have the noblest of the noble duties to society, that being teaching skill of patience and anger management to the general populace. And after years of determination, when you can smile as you drive by people at the stop, that’s when you’ll know that you’ve made it. ♦