Meet Maurice Jones, a retired Marine and state trooper and now, a First Student superstar—bus driver turned location manager.
Maurice joined the United States Marine Corps in September of 1987 where he served for more than 22 years in both active duty, until 1991, and the reserves, until 2009. He was born with the call to serve as evidenced by his commitment to his country, but his need to protect and serve extended to his local community too. He joined the Pennsylvania State Police in 1993 and became a state trooper until 2013 when he retired.
After retirement from the military and the state police, Maurice worked a few part-time jobs to stay busy. He found it too hard to sit at home and do nothing. A friend of his who worked at a local high school suggested he become a bus driver. “I always saw First Student buses at different locations in the area and inquired to find out if it was something that was going to be beneficial to me,” he said. “I liked what I saw and the schedule worked out great for me. I also liked the diversity in the jobs available at First Student and in the people whom I would deal with on a day-to-day basis.”
Maurice joined the First Student family in October 2016 as a bus driver in Methacton. After a year on the job his location manager, Amy Huffman, encouraged him to apply to be a location trainer. “I was a DOT inspector with the state police and used to inspect school buses, so I figured that was probably something I could do at First Student,” Maurice said.
Maurice’s previous training through the military and state police was pointing him in a new direction and the First Student management team recognized his talent. “My ability to understand rules, regulations, policies and procedures made me suited me for the role,” he shared. “I knew I could talk to people so they could grasp difficult concepts to put them at ease so they understood what I was explaining to them.”
“I immediately realized Maurice’s potential in safety because of the way he carried himself and his background,” Amy Huffman, Senior Location Manager shared.
“It just made sense for me to expand my horizons,” he added. “Once I got into the company, I realized there were a number of opportunities for me.”
Maurice worked as a safety trainer for a year before being promoted to a safety manager in October 2019 in Upper Merion.
“Over the years, Maurice was always very professional and structured, and I saw talent and ability in him that I’m not sure he saw within himself,” Amy added. Amy recalled telling Maurice early on that he would one day be a safety manager. As he excelled in that role Amy encouraged him to move into operations.
In 2021, after two years as a safety manager, Maurice was once again moved up the ladder and applied to be a location manager where he currently works in Upper Merion Township in southeastern Pennsylvania. “He did all of the hard work, I just helped to bring it out in him,” Amy added.
“I’ve always seen, even as a driver, that no matter what you want to do with your life and your career, there’s always an avenue for you to actually get there,” he said.
“I truly believe that I became a strong manager because my mentors always pushed me outside of my comfort zone,” Amy included. “So, that is exactly what I did with Maurice. I pushed him outside of his.”
“It’s been a fantastic journey,” he added. “One thing that really struck me with First Student was that no matter where you go, you are always made to feel welcome. There are opportunities for everyone to move forward as you get to know more aspects of the job. One thing I tell everyone I hire from drivers on, First Student loves to promote from within.” And Maurice is living proof of that!
When asked what was next for him, he laughed and said, “I can’t really say. I’ve been twice retired already. This is my third career!”
Are you recently retired but not yet ready to stop working? We’d love to meet you. We are currently hiring bus drivers and we’d love for you to join the First Student family. Perhaps you could end up as a location manager, just like Maurice!