Careers in Vocational or Technical Industries

The best thing about a vocational or technical education is that it prepares you for the real world. Technical and vocational jobs never face a slowdown even in times of economic downturn. After all, people will always need their nurse or chef!

Some of the most popular postsecondary programs are those that require professionals in the following industries:

  • Agriculture
  • Business
  • Family and Consumer Sciences
  • Health careers
  • Marketing
  • Technology
  • Fine arts and design
  • Writing courses
  • Personal grooming

Of course, this is only a very broad overview. Even within these industries, you can choose to specialize in a variety of careers. For instance, the agriculture industry could include careers relating to food, agribusiness, fiber production etc., while an associate degree in business could include run the gamut of specializations in accounting, business administration, management, calculus, finance, information technology, entrepreneurship etc.

So, the options even within a particular industry are unlimited and a program in a good trade school should allow you to choose from among careers within a particular industry.

The Most Promising Careers
Graduating from a technical or trade school promises one thing for sure -- a job! A survey conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau indicates that more than one-third of the fastest growing occupations will require either an associate's degree or a postsecondary vocational certificate. Read Hottest Careers for further information on what industries and professions are growing and have a need for trained workers.

The Most Promising Careers

In 2006, the top ten fastest-growing occupations were veterinary technologists and technicians; makeup artists, theatrical and performance; skin care specialists; physical therapist assistants; dental hygienists; environmental science and protection technicians; manicurists and pedicurists; fitness trainers and aerobics instructors; preschool teachers, except special education; cardiovascular technologists and technicians.

The average earnings for these professions vary from $20,190 to $43,590. Some professions like dental hygienists could earn at an even higher level.

Source: acinet.org (Fastest growing occupations)

In fact, the top five highest-paying occupations in 2006 included salaries in the range of over $60,000 -- computer specialists ($68,600); radiation therapists ($66,200); nuclear technicians ($65,500); dental hygienists ($62,800); and fashion designers ($62,600).

Source: acinet.org (Highest paying occupations)

The certifications needed for most of these professions are either Associate Degrees, postsecondary vocational awards or licenses. In the US, the type of program or certification given by a technical school varies in each state.


Most vocational and technical schools offer 1-2 year diploma programs, technical certificate programs or 2-year associate degree programs.

What to Expect from a Vocational Industry Environment
A technical job gives you the flexibility to strike out on your own. Many trade school graduates go on to starting their own consultancies, shops and businesses.

What to Expect from a Vocational Industry Environment

Moreover, since professions are so varied, you'll find that your trade school degree allows you to explore a multitude of career options before you specialize. Lindsay, who graduated with a technical degree in a writing course, explored journalism for a couple of years before she settled down to specializing as a court reporter.

A technical career is challenging, exciting and constantly evolving. Unlike traditional fields, it never allows you to rest on your laurels or get stuck in stereotyped job roles.

Gone are the days when a bartender only needed to mix drinks -- today's bartenders are trained to handle emergency situations and are responsible for the health and well-being of their customers!

So if you are one of those people who doesn't want any two days to be alike, learning a new trade could be right up your alley.

Choose Your Career!
Discover more about various career options and industries at:

Choose Your Career!


[return to main articles page]

Recent Articles
  • Are Online Degrees Worth Anything?

    In this article you will find the value of an online degree and how the experts perceive them. Read about the comparison of an online degree to a traditional education and the increasing enrollment of online schools.

  • Trade School vs Traditional College

    In this article you will find information regarding what to expect from a trade school experience versus the traditional college experience. Learn more about what might fit better for you, college or vocational and trade school.

  • What Major is Right for Me?

    Outlined in this article are steps that can be taken to help decide what to major in while attending college. Anything from self assessment to researching career fields are listed.

  • Careers that might be in Demand in the Future?

    Included in this article is what careers will be in demand in the future? Also included are trends in new career opportunities on the horizon.