Has trade school ever crossed your mind? This is different from college because trade schools focus on using hands-on, technical education. For a lot of people, going to college after high school seems like a given. The reason is usually pretty obvious – more income. However, this path comes with its own drawbacks, such as cost, dropout rates and the chance that you may not end up using your degree to find employment. Not sure if college is for you? Here are some considerations to help you decide. Click To Tweet
Trade School vs. College
Trade school is hands-on, skill-focused technical education. There aren’t any general education courses which dramatically reduces classroom time and costs. Trade schools have smaller class sizes, providing more one-on-one time with the instructor, making it easier to ask questions and get feedback.
- Time to Completion
- Cost Incurred
- Opportunities For Employment
1) Time to Completion
Traditional 4-year college means that you will not enter the workforce for that same amount of time. Most trade schools are significantly shorter, with some HVAC training programs lasting just 14 weeks.
2) Cost Incurred
The cost for a bachelor’s degree averages around $25,000-$50,000 per year, which adds up to $100,000-$200,000 for four years of attendance. That estimate doesn’t include room and board or any additional time it might take. In fact, the graduating class of 2016 was sent out into the world with the largest student loan debt of any graduating class in U.S. history. In contrast, trade schools average far less, with few exceeding $30,000 in total.
Pro Tip: Dropping out halfway through a college semester can incur significant debt. Don’t be afraid to take a gap year after high school to better prepare for your future.
3) Opportunities For Employment
Over the next few years, there will be a massive increase in demand for skilled trade employees. Plumbing, electric, HVAC and welding are experiencing shortages of qualified people, creating openings in desperate need of being filled. This means that with proper training you will have more opportunities and the potential for competitive pay upon entry to the workforce.
Explore Your Options
Furthering your education is always a good idea, but it’s best to explore your options when it comes to going to a trade school or college. Vocational education programs build self-confidence and provide practical skills that are in high demand.
Read our student testimonials for an insight into what our program is like.
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How is a trade school different from a college?
Trade schools focus on technical, hands-on learning in the classroom. This gets you ready for the workforce.