EverythingPeople This Week!

Published on Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Study Shows Young People Have Major Misconceptions About Trade School

Author: Heather Nezich

A survey conducted by BigRentz, a construction equipment rental company, found that a majority of young Americans ages 18 to 24 do not believe they can get a high-paying job from attending trade school.

The labor shortage in America has never been bigger. According to CNBC, employers in the skilled trades industry are struggling to fill a record 6.7 million job positions. Although trade schools are frequently viewed as the answer to the labor gap, enrollment in trade school has seen a gradual decline in enrollment over the past few years, despite the growing belief that apprenticeships can make one more employable.

A factor could be how younger generations view the value of trade schools. To uncover their perceptions, BigRentz surveyed 3,000 young Americans on their beliefs on trade school advantages. The study found:

  • Only 11% think they can get a high-paying job out of trade school
  • Young Americans do not associate job security and high pay with trade school
  • 54% believe the starting pay of trade school grads is much lower than college grads

Image Source: BigRentz

While young Americans were aware of trade schools’ specialized learning opportunities and lower debt, only one in 10 thought it led to a high-paying career. Four in 10 selected none of the above as a choice, suggesting an overall lack of awareness of the job security and pay potential for trade school grads.  In reality, there are many benefits of attending trade school versus college:

Image Source: BigRentz

Combined, over half of Generation Z thought employees who are trade school certified made a significant $18,000 less than employees with a bachelor’s agree. One in five of them thought the pay difference was $30,000.  In reality, trade school grads make an average of $12,000 less, but this could actually lead to higher net earnings due to the high demand for skilled jobs, lower trade school debt, and the difficulty of offloading trade schools to another country.

Image Source: BigRentz

To create more interest, it is important for education systems and employers to provide initiatives that improve young people’s perceptions and create awareness for skilled trades as a well-paid and secure career path. Only then can we address the expanding skilled labor gap that impacts our economy and workforce.

For additional details and insights, the full study can be found on the BigRentz website.


Source: BigRentz; Tony Huynh, http://siegemedia.com


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