As not all students want to attend a four-year college or university, vocational schools are often an excellent option for career training.
A vocational school, also known as trade school or career college (sometimes vo-tech school), specializes in specific, focused job training. In other words, it is a school where students are taught the skills needed to perform a particular occupation.
Unlike liberal arts colleges which cover a wide educational range of studies, vocational schools accent particular trades. It’s important to choose not only the right school, but also the right field. In addition to matching your interests and skills, also consider which careers have a good outlook and are in more demand like nursing and legal assistants.
Vocational schools can either be post-secondary schools, but in some cases may substitute for the final years of high school. Anyhow, vocational schools are no more than two years of schooling. They can be public schools, also national, multi-trade schools (like University of Phoenix). These schools focus on offering an array of different study options under one roof (or online, in most cases).
In fact, most purely vocational schools are private schools, also small trade-specific schools. These schools can be further divided into non-profit schools and proprietary schools, operated for the economic benefit of their owners. They generally build its campus, faculty and curriculum revolving around preparing students for a particular job.
If you are looking for a way to improve your professional marketability but want to avoid commuting, you should know there are also hundreds of online schools specializing in a variety of career-focused courses. These online schools offer a number of vocational training programs, such as bookkeeping, carpentry, electronics technology, hospitality management and more.
As is often the case, the online schools of your choice will provide all necessary books, equipment and other learning accessories needed to complete your educational goals. For instance, if you are interested in Computer Aided Drafting, online vocational schools will offer not only instruction, but also drafting tools and other trade equipment in their training programs to help you achieve an online degree.
Fields of Study
In terms of fields of study, there are a broad variety of vocational schools whether it’s online or in a classroom setting. For instance, vocational schools specializing in food may include training in fields such as culinary arts and restaurant management. Health care fields involve dentistry, holistic health, massage therapy, medical administration, medical and dental support/assistance, medical specialty and nutrition. Other studies offered by vocational schools contain aviation, computer maintenance/repair, construction, cosmetology, funeral service and fashion design.
Benefits of Vocational Schools
Vocational schools are important because students can learn job-specific skills in their classes.
Are you considering attending a vocational school but have not made decision? Then, have a look at what benefits of enrolling into a vocational school.
• Program Length – In general, career programs offered by vocational schools don’t require a great deal of time to complete. In a traditional college or university, you will have to complete plenty of subjects and pass lots of exams, thus, taking many years to graduate. However, in a vocational course, you can have your certification in less than 2 years.
• Career-Oriented Classes & Job-specific Degrees – When a person attends a vocational school, he/she takes only classes dedicated to offering specific skills to his/her desire career. All classes taken for a vocational degree are in relation to a specific subject.
• Cost Effective – Another benefit is that tuition at vocational schools is lower than traditional colleges and universities. There is no charge for room and board. Students usually pay per unit of class, with the fee ranging from $20 to $50.
• Financial Aid – Just like colleges and universities, vocational schools accredited by the U.S. Dept. of Education also offer financial aid backed by the U.S. government. Some students are even eligible to receive grant money that doesn’t need to be repaid.
Cons of Vocational Schools
Yet while attending vocational schools has some benefits, there are also some disadvantages.
• Narrow Focus – Since vocational schools are career centered, you may not have the chance to know other fields. You may only develop your skills on one specific area. However, when it comes to knowledge and information related to other subjects, you may have lesser learning about them. This is not so much the case with college or university degrees.
• Competition – Although competing with graduates from four-year institutions is usually not a problem for most vocational fields, there are exceptions. Take information technology for instance, jobs like engineers and scientists which require a more comprehensive degree may have more competition. In these cases, many employers prefer graduates with four-year degrees.
Are you new to the job market? Or are you looking to enhance your skills?
Then, a vocational school can be a good start to further your career. A vocational school, also known as trade school or career school, is a school where students can learn the skills needed to perform a certain job. Even better, some schools also help their students identify potential employers and apply for jobs.
But, what if you are unable to attend a full-scheduled traditional school? It doesn’t matter – you can also learn or improve your skills by attending an online vocational school. With the advent in technology, there are a number of online schools (including online vocational schools) available to almost everyone. Sure, it could be challenging to find the best online vocational school, as a lot of unethical and unprofessional opportunities seem to crop up everyday. However, there are steps that can help you make sure the school you choose is reputable and trustworthy.