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Trade School

Skilled trades represent some of the smartest and most fulfilling job choices available today. North America — and Indiana in particular — is experiencing a shortage of qualified skilled trades people. An education from the right trade school often requires less schooling and less debt than a traditional four-year degree.

For those interested in trade school, a frequent search query is “trade schools near me.” This often means trade schools in Indianapolis. A few popular options include Ivy Tech Community College, Empire Beauty Schools, Fortis, Lincoln Tech, and more. 

The shortage of skilled trades has impacted the cost and time required for many trade school programs — usually to the benefit of a job seeker interested in skilled trades, since the high demand has increased opportunities and variety for trade school education and decreased cost. Skilled trade school and related trade school programs may offer paths that require:

  • a certificate and on-the-job training;
  • a high school diploma/GED and on-the-job training/apprenticeships;
  • or an associate’s degree.

For example, electrician trade school offers several different routes to become an electrician, such as certificate programs that take only a few months, two year associate’s degree programs, or apprenticeship programs that may take a few years of paid, on-the-job training. 

No matter which path you choose, trade school jobs are in high demand. You have many opportunities and resources if you are interested in skilled trades. 

Skilled Trades

Searching for a fulfilling (and good-paying) career can be tough — whether you are a current student who is looking to avoid the time commitment and debt of a four-year degree, or you are looking for a new job to make a higher salary, skilled trades are a path you should consider.

Skilled trade jobs in demand are increasing with the current shortage of employees to fill these fast-growing job openings. The skilled trades labor shortage is a nationwide phenomenon. A large part of Indiana’s economy is powered by sectors like manufacturing and construction. This means there is high demand, and the job market for skilled trade jobs is very competitive.

For Hoosiers currently in the workforce and Indiana youth searching for a promising careers to get the training they need without going into debt, skilled trades may be the answer for a rewarding job path. 

If you are new to considering skilled trades as a career option, you may be wondering, what exactly are skilled trade jobs? Simply put, skilled trades are occupations that require a special skill, knowledge, or ability which can be obtained at a college, technical school, or through apprenticeships or specialized training. Skilled trades are careers that often require less schooling and debt than a four-year degree, challenging the notion that going to college is the only decision for students seeking rewarding jobs.

A list of trades includes high-demand fields like healthcare, energy, information technology, advanced manufacturing, construction and automotive. The benefit of these jobs on this trade careers list is that these fields do not usually require a four-year degree — meaning you have more time and less debt.

Here is a trade jobs list of positions that require only a certificate and on-the-job training:

  • HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) and refrigeration mechanics and installers
    • Median income: $48,000
    • Projected job growth: 14%
  • Massage therapists
    • Median income: $38,000
    • Projected job growth: 29%

Here is a list of trades that require only a high school diploma/GED and on-the-job training/apprenticeships:

  • Electrical power-line installers and repairers
    • Median income: $77,000
    • Projected job growth: 11%
  • Millwrights
    • Median income: $69,000
    • Projected job growth: 12%
  • Plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters
    • Median income: $65,000
    • Projected job growth: 13%
  • Electricians
    • Median income: $58,000
    • Projected job growth: 7%
  • And more, such as: sheet metal workers, computer numerically controlled machine tool programmers, industrial machinery mechanics, automotive body repairers, carpenters, engine specialists, machinists, and welders.

Here is a list of trades that require some college, not necessarily a degree:

  • Computer user support specialists
    • Median income: $47,000
    • Projected job growth: 11%

Here is a list of skilled trades that require an associate’s degree:

  • Web developers
    • Median income: $61,000
    • Projected job growth: 13%
  • Diagnostic medical sonographers
    • Median income: $60,000
    • Projected job growth: 19%
  • Engineering technicians (not drafters)
    • Median income: $57,000
    • Projected job growth: 7%
  • Respiratory therapists
    • Median income: $56,000
    • Projected job growth: 23%
  • And more, such as: computer network support specialists, cardiovascular technologists and technicians, mechanical engineering technicians, physical therapist assistants, and industrial engineering technicians.

While there is high demand for all skilled trades, the fastest growing trade jobs are: physical therapy/occupational therapy assistants, respiratory therapists, diagnostic medical sonographers, and HVAC mechanics and installers — among others, these types of skilled trades all have projected job growth over 13 percent.

At Morales Group, we offer an experienced team of skilled trades recruiters nationally. Whether seasonal, contract, or direct-hire, we can help you navigate the skilled trades arena.

List of skilled trades we hire:

  • Electricians
  • Millwrights
  • Welders – structural
  • Welders – pipe
  • Equipment operators
  • Low-voltage installers
  • Carpenters
  • Plumbers
  • Crane operators
  • Pipefitter industrial
  • Laborers
  • And more!

In addition to our expert recruiters helping match you with the perfect skilled trades career, we also provide assistance and assurance to keep you worksite as safe as possible:

  • OSHA [Occupational Safety and Health Administration] Safety Training
  • “Toolbox Talks” specific to the workplace
  • Hazards and best practices at your worksite
  • Random job-site safety audits
  • Job site assessments

Trade School Programs

Indiana is currently considering state government proposals that include ideas for skilled trade programs. Some propose adding a fifth year of high school for students who wish to complete technical training. Others propose offering grants for students to get credentials in trade school programs for high-demand skilled trade jobs.

Businesses that need workers for skilled trades are also creating effective skilled trade programs to fill their own shortages. For example, several HVAC companies offer HVAC training free of charge to encourage workers to consider skilled trade jobs for their careers.

 List of Trades for Females

Not only are there abundant opportunities for women in the skilled trades, but the pay is competitive and the required education is affordable and fast. Nancy Cole, past president of the American Welding Society, confirms that the shortage of skilled workers has created wonderful opportunities for women. Hourly wages can climb to $25 for welders with the right training and experience, says Judith Crocker of the Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network. 

Less than nine percent of the U.S. construction workforce is female. This is partially contributed to the past stereotype that working in the skilled trades is always physically demanding, but robotic equipment and other technologies have made quite a list of skilled trades for females safer, cleaner, and rewarding workplaces. 

A list of trades for females is obviously the same as for male skilled trade workers, but the list with the most upcoming opportunity is as follows:

  • Welding
    • The American Welding Society predicts there will be a shortage of 400,000 operators by 2024;
    • Welders have the opportunity to work in several industries across the country;
  • HVAC
    • The demand for HVAC installers is expected to grow by 14 percent through 2024;
    • HVAC service technicians can climb the career ladder to become installers, operation managers, and distribution managers.
  • Electrician
    • The demand for HVAC installers is expected to grow by 14 percent through 2024;

Skilled trades can offer greater earning potential than career fields traditionally dominated by women. Experienced tradeswomen can make six figures, and there are entrepreneurial opportunities among the list of trades for females.

Trade Jobs Salary

Trade jobs salary is often surprising to those who don’t know much about the skilled trades. Wages for skilled trades occupations are nearly 45 percent higher than other occupations — $51,000 is the median annual salary for these jobs.

The best vocational careers aren’t based only in trade jobs salary, however. Depending on your definition of “best,” vocational careers also offer affordable education with many federal grants aimed at filling the skilled trades shortage by offering financial aid for these careers. Education programs are usually shorter, saving you time and money. 

Fun trade jobs offer a social environment and room to grow.

Going PRO in Michigan

Going PRO in Michigan is a campaign designed to elevate the perceptions of skilled trades and to showcase opportunities in a variety of rewarding careers. Skilled trade jobs in Michigan are abundant due to a sizable labor shortage, and the Going PRO in Michigan campaign is designed to encourage students and workers to recognize the benefits in skilled trade jobs that are often overshadowed. 

The campaign highlights skilled trade schools in Michigan and skilled trades in demand in Michigan. This campaign was a response to frequent internet search queries such as “skilled trades Michigan” and “skilled trades apprenticeship Michigan”. 

Although this campaign is Michigan-focused, it offers plenty of helpful information on many in-demand skilled trade careers that is applicable no matter where you live and work.