What Is a Trade School, and Is It the Right Choice for You? Why You Should Consider Trade School Instead of College

Trade school can help you reach your career goals. However, many people wonder, "What is trade school?" This guide fills in the gaps.

According to one study, in 2014, there were 16 million people who went to trade school programs.

If you’re thinking about joining these millions of people in trade school, you might be wondering: “What is trade school?”

Thankfully, we have all the answers for you, so make sure you keep reading to find out!

What is Trade School?

Trade school is to help train you for jobs that require special skills that you can’t get at a college. They’re normally for industries like:

  • Energy
  • Healthcare
  • Technology
  • Automation
  • Manufacturing
  • Construction

Some jobs you could get after trade school include being a mechanic, machinist, HVAC technician, welders, construction crewman, nurse, therapist, healthcare aide, carpenter, plumber, or electrician. 

Normally trade school will be the alternative to a four-year degree program at a college. These are shorter, less expensive, and more specialized programs than college could provide. 

Many companies in the United States are looking for skilled labor workers because many more people are choosing to go to college. However, there are plenty of career opportunities and growth if you choose a trade industry. 

You’ll need to have graduated high school or have a GED in order to attend a trade school. Once you’re there, you’ll get hands-on learning and enjoy all kinds of other benefits. 

Smaller Classes

In a regular college classroom, you could have lectures with sixty or more students. However, in a trade school, you’ll be in a smaller class size which means that you’ll get more attention from the instructor.

When you get more instruction from the teacher, then you’ll have a better chance at developing your skills. Plus, you’ll be in a class with peers who are all passionate about the same subject as you, which gives you a greater bond with your classmates. 

This can help you later when you graduate and are trying to network!

Get Your Degree Faster

The average bachelor’s degree takes about four years to finish, but many students have to stay in school even longer. That means that’s four years where they’re not able to work in a career, network, and build their resume. 

However, depending on the trade school programs you choose, you could be out in under a year. For example, some nursing programs only take about twenty months to finish. 

The length of time for your program will depend on what school you go to and what program you want to attend. Some of them are harder and require more time, but generally, most of them can be completed within two years.

Get Hands-on Training

In college, you’ll likely be attending lectures, taking tests, and writing papers. Some of that knowledge may not even be directly applicable to your career, and it’s more of a broad overview rather than specifics. 

But in a trade school, everything you learn is focused on helping you do a better job in your career. For example, the coursework is designed to help prepare you for when you start working. 

You’ll also have hands-on experience with great instructors, so you can really understand how the job will work. You’ll even have a chance to use the same equipment that you would in the field.

They’ll also expose you to all kinds of different situations and problems that might occur on your job. This way, you can know how to react when it happens in real life.

You may also learn more about these tips when you go to one of the best trade schools!

Job Security

Regardless of where you go or what job you get, there is always going to be technology that threatens to replace your job. However, with the experience of trade school under your belt, you’ll be able to add a human touch that no machines could add.

This helps to make sure that you keep your job no matter how far technology progresses. 

Plus, you’ll be choosing jobs that are always going to be necessary, like in the healthcare field! 

Stay Up to Date on Current Trends

When you have a degree or a certificate from a trade school, you’ll be able to apply to all kinds of jobs that are in high demand. 

You’ll also have the reassurance that most of the programs at your school stay up on the latest trends in the industry. They’ll take those into account and factor them into your coursework so that you’re prepared for any job that you have.

You can add these skills to your resume to show employers that you know what’s going on in the industry and you’re up for the challenges.


Many people go to a trade school program just because it’s more affordable. A bachelor’s degree can be expensive depending on what college you go to, and many people have to take out student loans just to be able to afford it.

Then, when they graduate, they spend all their salary just paying those loans back. However, a trade school will normally cost you a lot less, and you’ll still be making a good amount of money when you graduate as well.

Learn More About Trade School

If you’re wondering, “What is a trade school,” these are only a few things to consider. 

We know that choosing a career path can be stressful, but we’re here to help you out!

If you enjoyed this article, make sure that you explore our website to find more articles just like this one. 

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