After finishing your high school education, you may find yourself considering your options for the future. Although many students opt to enroll in a traditional college or university, that may not necessarily be the ideal route for you. Trade school may be better suited for your needs depending on your career goals and interests.
In this guide, we will discuss the differences between trade school and college, making it easier to decide which one is right for you.
What is Trade School?
Trade schools specialize in providing career-focused training designed to provide students with the practical skills and experience needed to enter a specific skilled vocation.
Trade School Versus College: Key Differences
So, exactly what is the difference between college and trade school? There are several important differences that you should know about.
At a college or university, you will spend a significant amount of time in general education courses that may not be directly related to your planned career. For example, even if you want to get a job as a cameraman, you will need passing grades in math, writing, history, and other core classes to get your degree. In addition to those classes, you will spend time in several courses related to your selected major/degree path.
In contrast, most trade schools omit these general education classes. Instead, the courses provide dedicated training in a selected vocation. Depending on your study focus, you can often look forward to:
- Learning how to use specialized equipment, tools, or programs required for your career
- Honing important skills
- Building your experience through hands-on learning, internships, and other methods
- Becoming a highly qualified job candidate
- Networking with current and future professionals in your field
- Interacting with instructors that are experts in your desired field of work
Because they set up a significantly more focused study path than traditional colleges, trade school programs are often considerably shorter. So, you could be graduating and headed into your desired career field within a year or less.
Even the fastest degree paths at a college generally take at least two years to complete.
Did you know that the average cost of college in the U.S. is over $35,000 per year? A bachelor’s degree can end up costing you more than $500,000 once you factor in tuition, books and supplies, student loan interest, and the income you lose out on as a full-time student.
In comparison, the average cost of trade school ranges between $3,600 and $15,000 (depending on your selected program and the length of the program). And because you can often secure a skilled position immediately after school – and the actual program lengths are typically far shorter – you’ll be able to generate solid income much faster.
Next steps after graduation
One of the biggest benefits of trade school comes after graduation. After you receive your diploma/certificate, you may be qualified to enter your profession immediately. Certain professions (for example, electrician) may require a licensure exam first, but graduates are still well-prepared to move forward right after school.
Once you graduate from college, you don’t necessarily have any practical experience in your career field. So, it is not easy to secure a job, regardless of your college degree.
Create the Future You Want: Pursue a Career in Media
All too often, young adults are led to believe that going to college or a university is the only way to achieve their career goals. But in reality, there are far more options than you might realize – and for many individuals, attending a specialized trade school is the best choice.
At the Beonair Network of Media Schools, with campuses located in Miami, Chicago, Colorado, and Ohio, students participate in an engaging, hands-on curriculum focused on providing vital skills for careers in the media industry. Whether you’re interested in working in video or audio production, broadcasting, marketing, or a similar field, we offer a diverse range of programs to match.
Get more information about how enrolling in one of our media schools can set you up for the future you’ve been dreaming of: contact us today!
Image Credit: Denizce on Shutterstock
Image Credit: Karen Roach on Shutterstock