By James Mitchell
Here at Intern Solutions, we connect students and other young adults with training opportunities and job solutions every day. Lately, we’ve noticed a fantastic trend: more and more people are opting for a skilled trade rather than a white collar career. Our team couldn’t be more thrilled about it!
Skilled trades are those labor jobs which require hands-on training in the specific skills needed for a particular line of work, often involving an apprenticeship but not a bachelor’s degree. Those in the skilled trades rely on specialized knowledge and abilities that unskilled laborers do not have, without taking the broad liberal arts education acquired by college majors in the learned professions.
Construction trades include: carpenters, electricians, equipment operators, glaziers, HVAC technicians, masons, painters, plasterers, plumbers, sheet metal and steel workers.
Industrial trades include: boilermakers, electrical linemen, equipment repairers, machinists, maintenance workers, pipefitters, shipwrights, tool and die makers, welders, water and wastewater treatment operators.
Service trades include: automotive mechanics, chefs, dental hygienists, hairdressers, jewelers, emergency medical technicians and paramedics.
Not only do many of these careers fulfill a passion for their employees, they cannot be easily automated or off-shored, and always will be in high demand.
I think about it this way: if I had a home repair project that I wanted done or car trouble that I needed to be fixed, there is no way — no WAY — I would have the skills to get the job done myself. And I know I’m not alone.
Interested in working in the skilled trades? With hundreds of career options to choose from, people in the skilled trades can find rewarding employment with a good salary, and the demand will only continue to grow as baby boomers reach the age of retirement.
In all seriousness, it almost seems impossible to admit this – seeing as skilled laborers are the folks who built our country – but the U.S. is facing an incredible decline in skilled labor over the next few years, at the exact time when demand is expected to reach its peak.
With that in mind, we’re working on a campaign to share scholarship opportunities available to aspiring trades workers. Following are some great ones that I’ve found, and that I hope you’ll consider.
2017 Technicians in Residential Plumbing, HVAC or Electrical Scholarship & 2017 Troops to Trades Training Grants and Scholarships
2017 Skilled Labor Shortage Scholarship
Women in Skilled Trades Scholarship Program
National Housing Endowment Student Scholarships
World Plumbing Council Scholarship Program
American Society of Heating, Refrigerating & Air-Conditioning Engineers Scholarships
Here’s to all of the skilled trade workers out there, and those who someday will join their ranks!