Trade occupations might be one of the safest bets out there today. How many of you fix your own things? Maybe with a little bit of training, you could fix things professionally for others. I was watching  a Netflix show the other day related to cars. It got me thinking that car mechanics and some very specialized ones make a decent living doing things they really enjoy. Similarly, with HGTV, lots of specialized skills to help someone have a beautiful place to call home. 

I was reading an article from CBC  and it struck a chord. When my wife and I visited Vancouver, we saw a lot of women in construction. It was a stark difference for us coming from Texas where the construction industry is doing great, but we do not see a lot of women in trade occupations. 

But looking at BLS, trade occupations are on the rise, 11% growth projected year after year. 

We did a little more research on this topic to evaluate if the return on investment would be there if someone decides to pursue this degree. The starting salary seemed to be around $30K for masonry, median in the $40K range with the high being around $75K. 

A school which offers this training could cost $5K or so on average. 

Looking at the numbers, the trade occupation definitely makes sense. But who is it for? If you are someone who likes to build Legos, you might like building big sized Legos as well. Is it back breaking work; I am not so sure of that statement? Any work requires effort. This is more physical labor than sitting in front of a computer and trying to write a software program. 

In fact, sometimes when we are doing some construction work at our home, I feel that the trades person works hard but does not take his or her work home. Done is done and then they can concentrate on their family. While some other occupations, work seems endless! 

Just something to think about. These stories are to help students think through what they might be keen on doing and what they would enjoy doing. Any trades person can eventually start their own company. So, it’s not like they will be doing this for the rest of their life. The career path could be quite interesting.