How Many Types of Trade Schools Are There?
If you’re looking for a school that will get you a job right out of college, you might be thinking that trade school is for you, but what really is trade school
, and what different kinds of available programs can you choose? If you’re confused about the different types of trade school
options and trade school programs that are applicable to the work world, you’re not the only one. This article can help you determine what kinds of trade schools are out there and which ones might be beneficial for you and your career.
These trade schools typically have the word “Tech” or “Technical” in their title. Offering programs that are usually under two years, technical colleges prepare students for specific working environments that have something to do with science and technology — though many technical colleges are now branching out to offer different types of trade school programs
. At a technical college
, you can generally study to become an IT support person or a technical repair specialist. You might find courses in medical technology: like pharmaceuticals or medical billing and coding. Choosing a technical college can be beneficial if you want to enter the job market immediately. There are often many jobs in the technical areas that these colleges offer. However, there are some negatives to choosing this college. First, some people find that they are just unable understand or perform the needed tasks — this kind of work just isn’t for them. Because technical colleges offer courses in just one area, this means that transferring their skills generally is not an option. Also, while there are many jobs available in technical areas, the market becomes quickly saturated.
A vocational college
is a trade school
that offers courses of study that prepare individuals for careers in specific vocations — or jobs. Many vocational colleges have programs that are similar to or the same as the programs offered by technical colleges. However, vocational colleges often offer programs that are much broader than the programs offered at technical colleges. For example, some vocational colleges may offer classes in business or paralegal classes. Vocational colleges offer a much wider variety of options than technical colleges do
. They also offer the opportunity to transfer skills that many trade schools do not offer. However, because these programs are so broad, they might not mean a job right away. For example, if you get a degree in business, an employer might say it is too broad a degree for his or her business. He or she may want you to get a degree in business ethics or a degree that shows you have some knowledge in the field, for example.
Community College or Two-Year College
More and more, community colleges or two-year colleges are being lumped in with trade schools
as far as options for post-high school graduation go. Two-year schools grant associates degrees. These degrees and schools are designed to prepare individuals to immediately transition into the workforce. They are also often used for admission into a four-year university. At a two-year community college, individuals can learn any number of trades. Many four-year community colleges offer associates degrees in art or English alongside classes in welding or automotive repair. Although a number of the programs offered at a two-year college are not the kinds of programs you would generally think of when you thought about trade school, one of the benefits of the community college over a traditional, four-year college is that you don’t have to waste time taking classes that you don’t see as relevant
. Although there are many programs available, if you are going to be a welder, you take only classes that are relevant to welding. However, community colleges do often require basic reading and math classes, something some people may not be able to pass or wish to take.
Specialty Trade School
Specialty trade schools
are schools that teach only a certain trade. For example, you might go to a beauty school, business school, medical arts school, automotive repair school. These schools are beneficial because they offer very specific, often hands-on training
. In addition, you got to school with people who are going to be in the same industry and profession. Most classes are taught by industry professionals, so you get a good idea of what the real world will be like, and you can network. However, diplomas from some specialty trade schools might not be as well-received as diplomas from community colleges or other, broader schools.
From technical colleges to specialty trade schools, there are many different kinds of trade schools available. Choosing the right one for you depends on your skills and where you see yourself in your future.