The Financial Benefits of Going to Trade School

Thursday, March 07, 2024
Career Readiness

Many high school graduates take the traditional path of going to a four-year college and later getting a job in their chosen field. While this works out well for some, others may wonder if there’s another path that may better suit them. If you’re looking for something different, it’s worth considering pursuing a trade school education.

Though college graduates enjoy financial benefits, there are also many financial incentives for those who choose trade school. If you’re thinking about taking this route, check out these five major ways that trade school can benefit your bank account.

Pay Less for School

According to studies conducted by the Education Data Initiative, the average cost to attend a four-year university is $36,436 per student per year. Unfortunately, this number is only rising, with the average rate of increase at two percent per year for the last decade. Simply put, college is expensive, which makes even public universities cost-prohibitive for many students.

The average cost of a trade school education works out to about $33,000 total, including all necessary expenses. This means you can go to trade school for just 20% of what you would spend to attend a university. Being able to attend trade school for a fraction of the cost can definitely be attractive to those who have concerns about how they’ll cover college tuition.

Reduce Your Student Debt

Federal student loan debt averages $37,338 per borrower. Many take on even more in private debt, with the average owed at $54,921 per borrower. This is an unfortunate side effect of the soaring cost of a college education, as lots of students take on debt as a way to pay for their education.

Because trade school costs less, those who attend tend to rack up $10,000 or less in student loan debt. Many trade schools have scholarships and grants available and offer the opportunity to participate in paid work while you learn. 

These programs can help significantly reduce the debt students take on, which means you can graduate stress-free and ready to begin a career in the highest-paying trades.

Start Earning Money Sooner

Going to trade school not only costs less in terms of tuition and student debt but also allows students to start earning money much sooner. The amount of time you spend in trade school will vary according to the vocation you choose, but one of the biggest benefits of attending trade school is that most programs only take a few months to two years to complete.

This means that you can be done with your education and start earning money two years earlier than if you had gone the traditional college route. 

Regardless of which trade has the highest salary or is most in demand, they all can increase your lifetime earning potential, which can help you save more for retirement and get a head start on other financial goals.

Enjoy Access to Paid Apprenticeships

Many trade schools give students the opportunity to participate in paid apprenticeships with skilled tradespeople who have already mastered the highest-paying trade jobs. Getting paid for on-the-job training while you go to school can help offset the cost of your tuition. 

If a paycheck in the highest-paying trades exceeds your out-of-pocket costs, you will essentially be getting paid to attend school.

In general, these types of programs aren’t available at four-year colleges and universities. In fact, many college students take on unpaid internships where they must cover the cost of transportation, lunch, a professional wardrobe, and any other expenses incurred. 

While a college education can certainly be valuable, there’s no denying the appeal of being able to put money in your bank account while you’re training for your future.

Get Into an In-Demand Career

According to many different sources, there is a severe shortage of people working in skilled trades. All across the United States, companies are having trouble finding enough workers to fill positions, even in the highest-paying trade jobs. Manufacturing is one of the hardest-hit industries, with over 600,000 positions going unfilled throughout the country. 

This persistent labor shortage, combined with the expected growth in the need for skilled tradespeople, makes for a great long-term outlook when it comes to job stability and security. 

Are you wondering what trade has the highest salary? The truth is that many of them pay very well simply because they are in high demand. Those who choose the right trade won’t have to worry about being out of work anytime soon, which can bring a sense of peace and financial security.

Trade School Brings Many Financial Benefits for High School Graduates

While many high school students plan to go to college after graduation, keep in mind that there are options out there. For those who want an alternative to a four-year degree, attending trade school can help them save money, reduce debt, increase lifetime earnings, and gain financial and professional stability. 

While you will work hard in any career you choose, there’s no better feeling than knowing that work will pay off for you financially. In this regard, trade school can be the gift that keeps on giving for many years to come, helping you build the future you’ve always dreamed of.