Classes Accelerate Front Line Workforce Regrowth Following Pandemic-Induced Hiring Freeze
New Classes Join Hundreds of Train Conductors, Train Operators and Bus Operators Who Completed Training in 2021 and 2022
New York City Transit today announced the graduation of 27 new train operators following their successful completion of training at the New York City Transit (NYCT) Learning Center in Brooklyn.
The graduation took place days after subways set a ridership record on Thursday, Sept. 9, carrying 3,641,033 riders, a 34.8 percent increase from the comparable day in 2021. The record set is the highest day of subway ridership since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic on March 12, 2020.
These operators will help NYCT tackle crew shortage challenges and bolster the frequency of subway service. This marked the formal end of intensive training that began in April 2022.
"Riders are returning to more train operators as part of our commitment to improving employee availability,” said New York City Transit President Richard Davey. “This new class of train operators will ensure that public transit is the best option for riders returning to work and school this fall.”
“Our continuous hiring and training efforts are making more trains available to customers,” said New York City Transit Senior Vice President of Subways Demetrius Crichlow. “Building up the workforce remains a top initiative to provide better subway service for New Yorkers.”
The new employees join the hundreds of bus operators, train operators and conductors who recently completed their training — part of a deliberate effort by the MTA to rapidly grow the number of bus operators, subway train operators and conductors. A hiring freeze, necessitated by a fiscal crisis that developed during the pandemic, depleted the ranks of train operators and conductors with many veteran workers retiring or leaving their frontline posts. Along with improved recruiting efforts and speeding up training for new employees, the MTA addressed the staff shortage by bringing back recently retired train operators, scheduling additional overtime and buying back vacation time.