Best Trades To Learn
Skilled Trades: Highest Paying Trade Jobs
The majority of high school graduates find that trade school is a more secure and inexpensive route to professional growth than a typical college institution. Trade schools, also known as vocational schools and technical colleges, are post-secondary institutions that provide technical skills training in high-demand sectors, allowing students to obtain profitable work right after graduation.
This article guides you in finding the best trade jobs, outlining the prerequisites, income potential, and typical duties and responsibilities for each profession.
We’ll also talk about the expected rise of these top trade school positions.
We’re also going to review some of the highest paying trade jobs to see if it really is the best way for you to go.
But before that, how do you differentiate a trade school from a traditional college institution?
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Table of Contents
Trade School vs Four-Year College
In contrast to a conventional university, which provides students with a broad education based on the liberal arts and humanities, a trade school teaches students the technical know-how necessary for a specific occupation, such as mechanical repair and welding.
They can be either public or private, and the majority of these trade schools are for-profit businesses.
If you have plans of pursuing a career in trades, make sure to verify that the trade school you are interested in is accredited.
Vocational programs can run from around eight weeks up to two years, which is largely dependent on whether or not you want to acquire a diploma, certificate, or associate degree. Graduates can then become licensed professionals.
Common trade school vocations include plumbers, electricians, pharmacy technicians, and paralegals.
Other options are to enroll in a culinary arts school to become private chefs and restaurant cooks.
Alternatively, they can train to become a car mechanic by earning a diploma in areas such as service management, automotive technology, or collision refinishing/ repair.
Even if the majority of the community colleges offer technical courses, students are still required to finish their general education requirements before transferring to a college or university.
Trade schools, on the other hand, simply require students to complete courses pertaining to their chosen vocation. This is ideal for persons with unique personalities and abilities.
The Best Trade School Jobs
This part gives you the highest-paying trade school jobs. The numbers presented here should provide you with a pretty good idea of the varied earning potentials of these jobs.
It is crucial to remember that your actual salary will vary based on a number of factors such as region, employer, and your personal qualifications.
We’ll also discuss job security, or how likely it is that you would remain employed for many years and receive a consistent income.
Lastly, each occupational profile includes projected growth projections from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Trade Job Median Salary (2019) With Job Growth Rate (2019-29)
Radiation Therapist: $85,560 with 7% Growth Rate
Elevator Installer and Repairer: $84,990 with 7% Growth Rate
Dental Hygienist: $76,220 with 6% Growth Rate
Web Developer: $73,760 with 8% Growth Rate
Diagnostic Medical Sonographer: $68,750 with 12% Growth Rate
Respiratory Therapist: $61,330 with 19% Growth Rate
Electrician: $56,180 with 8% Growth Rate
Plumber: $55,160 with 4% Growth Rate
IT Technician: $54,760 with 8% Growth Rate
Ironworker: $53,650 with 5% Growth Rate
Wind Turbine Technician: $52,910 with 61% Growth Rate
Legal Assistant: $51,740 with 10% Growth Rate
Geological and Petroleum Technician: $51,130 with 5% Growth Rate
Trade School Careers
To help you decide which career path is most suitable for you, we have provided here the top skilled trade jobs with their corresponding job description.
Radiation therapists provide treatment to patients with serious illnesses such as cancer in collaboration with nurses, doctors, and oncologists.
These medical professionals supervise radiation treatment sessions, which use devices such as linear accelerators to shrink and kill malignant tumors.
They carefully monitor patients for any adverse responses throughout therapy, all while following stringent safety procedures.
Radiation therapist employment is expected to rise 7% between 2019 and 2029, according to the BLS.
Radiation therapists earn the highest-paying trade position on our list, with a median annual salary of $85,560.
Approximately 63% in this trade school job are employed in private, public, or state hospitals, with the the rest working in outpatient care centers and doctor’s offices.
Elevator Installer And Repairer
Elevators, moving walkways, escalators, chairlifts, and other vehicle lifts are assembled, maintained, and repaired by these technical specialists.
Before the installation and testing of the elevator, they check on the building plans to assess what kind of machinery and system parts are suitable to use.
Elevator technicians do maintenance work for strict compliance with building regulations as well as government safety standards, in addition to resolving mechanical issues.
Typically, elevator technicians work for private equipment firms as contractors with a median annual salary of $84,990.
Geological And Petroleum Technician
These experts collaborate with scientists and petroleum engineers to explore, classify, and extract natural resources such as oil, gas, and coal.
You will find them mostly in the field to gather material samples for analysis, while those specializing in lab work perform careful evaluation of these samples for traces of hydrocarbons and metals to determine a site’s productivity.
According to the BLS, geological and petroleum technologists make a median annual income of $51,130.
Working in the oil and gas extraction industry may pay them from $72,440, and up to $94,510 if they are in managerial roles.
Geological and petroleum technician jobs are expected to rise by 5% until 2029.
Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
Diagnostic medical sonographers work alongside surgeons and physicians to diagnose diseases and other medical problems, as well as to prepare patients for surgery.
Sonographers discover and diagnose anomalies in the human body through the use of imaging devices to create ultrasounds and sonograms.
They can have a specialization on one or more areas of the body, i.e., the blood vessels, heart, abdominal cavity, or female reproductive system.
According to the BLS, job opportunities for diagnostic medical sonographers will increase by 12% between 2019 and 2029.
A typical sonographer earns approximately $68,750 per year, with an earning potential of up to $89,890 if they work in an outpatient treatment facility.
If becoming a healthcare professional is your goal, this career path may just suit you.
Dental hygienists assist patients in maintaining excellent dental health by performing preventive treatments and providing hygiene education.
They utilize various cutting-edge hand and ultrasonic instruments to remove tartar, plaque, and stains, including looking for symptoms of serious diseases such as oral cancer and gingivitis.
These experts can further their education towards becoming dental therapists, by completing additional training which varies by state.
According to the BLS, such roles are expected to rise by 6% all the way through 2029, creating 13,300 new jobs in the United States.
More than nine out of ten dental hygienists are employed at dentist offices, where they make $76,220 as median annual salary.
Licensed electricians mostly work for contractors, installing and testing power-based devices such as control grids, communication networks, and lighting systems.
Electrician jobs are expected to rise by 8% until 2029. They make a median income of $56,180 per year, with the top 10% of them earning more than $96,580.
Alternatively, they can opt for self-employment via residential installations of electrical systems.
Respiratory therapists help patients who have respiratory problems or cardiovascular issues. According to BLS statistics, respiratory therapist occupations will grow by a staggering 19% through 2029, resulting in 26,300 new jobs.
More than three-fourths of these health professionals are currently employed in hospitals, and their average annual salary is $61,330. Only one out of every ten of them earns more than $86,980 per year.
Respiratory therapists usually have an associate’s degree from a vocational school that has been certified by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care. A bachelor’s degree in respiratory therapy might also help you start a career in this industry.
Based on BLS data, job opportunities for plumbers are expected to rise by 4% through 2029, resulting in approximately 21,000 new positions. A contracting business employs nearly two-thirds of plumbers, who make a median annual income of $55,160.
Typically, you will need to complete an apprenticeship program which usually takes 4-5 years before you can practice as a plumber. Most of them have an associate degree or a certification. Before they may operate independently, licensure is required by the majority of the states.
Wind Turbine Technician
Wind turbine technicians, otherwise known as wind techs, are in charge of the maintenance and repair of turbines that produce electricity through wind energy.
It’s an in-demand green occupation, with opportunities expected to rise by 61 percent by 2029. Wind technicians earn a median annual salary of $52,910, with the majority working on remote wind farms.
The ironworker’s job involves the installation of steel and iron to reinforce buildings, bridges, and roadways for contracting businesses and construction corporations.
According to the BLS, ironworker occupations are expected to grow by 5% between 2019 and 2029, creating approximately 4,500 new jobs. While the typical yearly salary for these individuals is $53,650, they may earn more by undertaking civil and heavy engineering building projects.
Web developers design websites and manage the site’s back-end technical aspects. According to the BLS, web development occupations will rise by 8% between 2019 and 2029, resulting in 14,000 new jobs. The typical yearly pay for these professions is $73,760.
Departmental teams of computer support professionals install and maintain WANs, LANs, and internet networks. They also provide security services, such as safeguarding against hacker attacks and retrieving digital assets that have been stolen.
IT technician employment in the United States is expected to rise by 8% between 2019 and 2029. The highest-paid IT technician earns a median annual income of $72,160.
Legal assistants and paralegals provide assistance to attorneys by keeping digital filing systems up to date and generating formal documents such as contracts and mortgages.
They also provide assistance with trial preparation by researching applicable legislation and personal backgrounds.
The majority of legal assistants serve in law firms and offices, with the rest of them working for government agencies and financial organizations such as insurance companies and banks.
Occupational Therapy Assistant
An associate’s degree from an accredited institution is generally the entry-level education for occupational therapy assistants. Technical institutions and community colleges are typical places to find training programs to become one.
In 2017, the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education, a division of the American Occupational Therapy Association, approved over 200 occupational therapy assistant programs.
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