Why Gen Z is Choosing Skilled Trades Over Four-Year Colleges.
Are you part of the Generation Z demographic, born between 1997 and 2012, and wondering what the best path is for your future career? While many people in previous generations have pursued a four-year degree, there is a growing trend among Gen Z to consider skilled trades a viable option. In this blog post, we will explore why Gen Z chooses skilled trades over four-year colleges and how this new career path can empower them to achieve their goals and unlock their full potential.
First and foremost, one of the biggest reasons why Gen Z chooses skilled trades is the high demand for skilled workers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, by 2028, there will be a shortage of approximately 2 million skilled trade workers in the United States. This shortage presents a huge opportunity for Gen Z to enter a field where their skills and expertise are in high demand. Not only will this lead to job security, but it will also provide the opportunity for career advancement and higher salaries.
Another reason Gen Z chooses skilled trades is the lower cost of education compared to a four-year college degree. The average cost of tuition for a four-year degree has skyrocketed in recent years, leaving many students with significant debt upon graduation. On the other hand, skilled trade programs can be completed in a fraction of the time and at a fraction of the cost, allowing Gen Z to enter the workforce sooner and with the less financial burden.
In addition to the financial benefits, skilled trades offer a hands-on learning approach that many Gen Zers find more engaging and fulfilling than traditional classroom-based education. Skilled trade programs provide practical, real-world experience that prepares students for a successful career in their chosen field. This hands-on approach to learning can also lead to a more diverse range of career options and opportunities.
Another advantage of skilled trades is the potential for career advancement. Many skilled trade workers start as apprentices and work their way up to supervisors or business owners. This provides the opportunity for growth and financial stability, which is not always possible in other industries.
Speaking about business ownership, another aspect that sets skilled trades apart from four-year colleges is the potential for entrepreneurship. Many skilled trade workers go on to start their own businesses, allowing them to be their own bosses and create a flexible work-life balance. This independence and entrepreneurship potential is highly appealing to Gen Z, who values the freedom to create their own path and make a positive impact on their community.
If business ownership is not your thing, skilled trade workers have the opportunity for career advancement and growth. With experience and training, skilled trade workers can move into supervisory or management positions that can pay WELL INTO THE SIX FIGURES. This provides the opportunity for long-term career growth and financial stability.
One of the biggest misconceptions about skilled trades is that they are low-paying and lack job security. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, skilled trade workers often earn higher salaries and have more job security than many white-collar workers.
** According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS Data), the median annual wage for a skilled trade worker is $44,000, compared to the median annual wage for all workers at $38,000. Furthermore, the demand for skilled trade workers is expected to continue to grow, providing job security for those in the field.
** Important notes: Skilled Trade Rescue(STR) has reported that BLS data for some USA markets can be inaccurate (in many cases, by as much as 50%). For more information on this, please see the BLOG POST on this subject at this link: http://bit.ly/3lswGFL
One of the biggest draws of the skilled trades for GenZ and Millennials is the hands-on nature of the work. Instead of sitting in a classroom, skilled trade workers can work with their hands and see the tangible results of their labor. This work can also be fulfilling and provide a sense of pride in a well-done job.
Skilled trades offer flexible schedules and the opportunity to work in various settings. Skilled trade workers can choose to work in residential, commercial, or industrial settings, and they can choose to work full-time or part-time. This flexibility is appealing to many Millennials who are looking for work-life balance.
It’s important to note that skilled trades are not just for men; women are increasingly entering the field and finding success as skilled trade workers. The number of women in the skilled trades has been steadily increasing over the past decade, which is expected to continue.
A factor for women entering the skilled trades is that they offer alternative education and hands-on experience. Women recognize the value of vocational schools and apprenticeships to gain the necessary training and hands-on experience for a successful career in the skilled trades.
Women are also finding exciting pathways into skilled trades by way of the continued growth of technology and infrastructure, and the demand for skilled trade workers is expected to increase, providing stability for those in the field.
It’s worth mentioning that skilled trade workers play a critical role in our economy and society. From construction and manufacturing to energy and transportation, skilled trade workers are essential to the infrastructure and success of our communities.
By choosing a career in the skilled trades, Gen Z has the opportunity to make a real and tangible difference in the world, and to be a part of something larger than themselves.
The COVID-19 pandemic significantly impacted the job market, causing widespread layoffs and uncertainty for many workers. However, the skilled trade industry has been relatively stable during this time, with many workers considered essential and able to continue working throughout the pandemic. Some skilled trade industries have even experienced growth during this time, as the need for essential services such as plumbing and electrical work has increased.
One final benefit of skilled trades is the flexibility to work in various industries and settings. Skilled trade workers are needed in many industries, including construction, manufacturing, energy, transportation, and more. This provides Gen Z with a diverse range of career options and the ability to choose a career that aligns with their interests and goals. In addition, skilled trade workers can work in various settings, including office buildings, homes, or on construction sites. This provides the opportunity for a dynamic and fulfilling career.
So, what does all of this mean for Gen Z? Choosing a career in the skilled trades offers many benefits, including higher earnings, job security, career advancement, flexibility, and the ability to make a real and tangible difference in the world.