Vocational Schools

What are the benefits of a vocational Education?

The benefits are numerous and advantageous:
  • Fast-track your career into a high paying job
  • Receive training you need to succeed in the workplace
  • If you do decide to go onto a 4-year school, most universities will recognize your previous training and give you unit credit
  • More likely to start working sooner in the field of your choice
  • Gain diploma, license, and certification
  • Some vocational programs do not require a high school diploma or GED to enroll (anyone with a strong and determined work ethic is qualified!)
  • Over 500 Programs Possible!

If you choose to go to a vocational school, you will have more benefits than not continuing your education at all. You will most likely have higher:

  • Wealth (your job is more likely to offer you health insurance and a good salary!)
  • Life Satisfaction/Quality
  • Employment Opportunities (Vocational schools teach many technical skills needed in the work force)
  • Higher Professional Status
  • Individual Motivation

What are the Highest paying vocational Careers?

Many careers only require a two-year associate’s degree from a vocational school, and some of these careers are America’s highest paying jobs! Here are a few options and resources:
  1. Registered Nurse
    • Job Description- assisting doctors in providing patient care plans in hospitals, nursing facilities, and other health care settings
    • Top Pay: $96,320 or more​​
    • Average Pay: $66,220
    • Some Skills Needed: critical thinking, flexibility, compassion, patience, organization, attention to detail, and interpersonal and communication skills
    • Breckinridge School of Nursing provides an Associate’s Degree Program in Nursing. Link: www.breckinridgenursing.com
  2. Electrician
    • Job Description- trained on wiring buildings for electrical power and communications
    • Top Pay: $83,860 or more
    • Average Pay: $50,510
    • Some Skills Needed: communication and reading skills, aptitude for mathematics, mechanical ability, strength and manual dexterity, planning skills, and organization
    • ITT Technical Institute offers an Associate Science Degree from its School of Electronics Technology located in Oxnard. Link: http://www2.itt-tech.edu/electronicstech/campus/courses.cfm?prog_id=7269
  3. Paralegal or legal Assistant
    • Job Description- supporting lawyers by taking care of responsibilities such as legal research, administrative tasks, or document drafting
    • Top Pay: $76,960 or more
    • Average Pay: $47,570
    • Some Skills Needed: critical thinking skills, organization, reading and writing skills, oral communication, interpersonal skills, and research and investigative skills
    • Charter College has a program for a Paralegal Certificate. Located in Oxnard. Link: http://www.chartercollege.edu/programs/legal/paralegal-studies-certificate

Which Vocational Schools Are Near You?

There a lot of vocational programs available in California. Here are some options:
  • CET (Center for Employment Training) Santa Maria
    • Programs: Construction, Medical, Nursing, Truck Driving, Welding, Accounting, etc.
  • Job Corps, located in Long Beach, Sacramento, and Los Angeles
    • Some Programs: welding, Pharmacy technician, and optician
  • Laurus College, local to Santa Maria with both online and on campus courses
    • Some Programs: business, design art, and information technology (IT)
  • Kaplan College, with 10 California campuses (including San Diego and Riverside)
    • Some Programs: Criminal Justice, Diagnostic Cardiac Sonography, and Medical Office Specialist
  • Art Institute of California, with 7 California campuses (from San Francisco to San Diego)
    • Some Programs: cooking, fashion design, audio production, and web design & interactive media

Who is the Best Candidate for a Trade school education?

There is really no “best candidate” for a vocational school education.
However, individuals who enroll often fit into one of the following categories:
  • Attempting to gain experience in order to enter into a new industry
  • Shortening the amount of time needed for training
  • Deciding to experiment in an industry before jumping into the job market
  • Deciding what career they’re most interested in
  • Enjoys hands-on work
  • Excited to get out into the workforce

Beware of Sketchy Vocational schools!

A sketchy vocational school, or “diploma mill” is a company that offers ‘degrees’ for a flat fee in a short amount of time and requires little to no course work. Degrees awarded through diploma mills are not legitimate.
Signs of a Diploma Mill
No Studies, No Exams, No Interaction- If you’re getting a degree without doing any work, chances are you’re dealing with a diploma mill. Legitimate colleges or universities — including online schools — require substantial course work and interaction with professors.
Flat Fee- Many diploma mills charge on a per-degree basis. Legitimate colleges charge by the credit, course, or semester — not a flat fee for an entire degree.
No Waiting- Though there are schools that offer accelerated degrees in-person or online, earning a degree still takes some time. If an ad promises that you can earn a degree in a few days, weeks, or even months, it’s probably a diploma mill.
A great way to see if your program is legitimate is through the Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs.

Additional Resources

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