Are skilled trades a declining career path? Should I even bother?
Not at all! In fact, occupations in Skilled Trades are some of the fastest growing or most in-demand careers in the US. This is due to a couple factors:
- The average age of people working in skilled trades is quite a bit older (55 years old) than the average American worker. This means that many people in the skilled trades are inching closer to retirement age and tons of new hires will be needed to fill their shoes!
- Some newer trades (especially roles in renewable energy) are seeing unprecedented job growth due to increased investment in these areas
- Major government legislation and spending in areas like infrastructure requires more skilled workers to keep the projects staffed
So, in a nutshell - not only are skilled trades not dying, but this is an amazing time to think about starting a career in skilled trades!
If they aren’t dying, then why don’t more people join them?
Unfortunately, there is a simple lack of awareness about many of the amazing options that exist in the skilled trades. Many parents put a ton of emphasis on going to a traditional 2 or 4 year university, regardless of the job outlook upon graduation. The ‘college or nothing’ mentality often results in a lot of great career options (like skilled trades) being put on the wayside. This combined with many high schools across the US steadily phasing out their vocational training classes (courses like auto shop and wood shop) contributes to low awareness of many amazing career paths.
How can I learn more about the career outlook for trades?
A simple google search of trade apprenticeships or local unions in your area will help you to get a good overview of what is available and what opportunities are hiring. You can also learn about the huge variety of career paths available by browsing through the Table of Skilled Trades on Classet!
What do I have to do to get started?
You can browse and also complete an application to begin many programs directly through Classet. If you are curious or unsure about the future outlook of a particular trade, you can also ask in the Classet Community Forum so that you can get the information right from the source!