Benefits of Vocational Schools

Vocational schools differ from traditional colleges or universities because they typically prepare you for a specialized trade with hands-on learning and a more direct entry into a specific career. Some of the benefits of vocational or trade schools might include:

  • Programs that are shorter than a four-year bachelor’s degree
  • Less expensive training or degree programs
  • More direct entry into the workforce
  • Specialized training that gives you applicable skills for a specific job
  • Potential for distance learning, if you live far away from your school

RWM stands for "Real Work Matters," and we believe that workers in vocational careers make valuable contributions to our society every day. RWM offers a large database of postsecondary schools, including vocational schools and trade schools in all 50 states. Our database includes both on-campus and online schools, along with information on getting a high school diploma online. RWM features schools that offer certificates, diplomas, associate degrees, and bachelor’s degrees in business, skilled trades, health care, technical and more. Search our school database by city, state, program or career interest.

Keep in mind, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) suggests that before choosing a school, students should check with the school's accrediting body to ensure proper standards are being met. The school's catalog should have contact information for its accrediting body. The FTC also suggests paying special attention to the schools facilities and instructors; determining if extra costs are involved; and asking about graduation, student loan debt incurred by students, and employment rates. You may also wish to check with the attorney general in your state to see if the school has any complaints against it.

The RWM School Database includes contact information for hundreds of vocational schools along with links to their websites. You'll also find links to forms if you'd like more information directly from a specific school. The database also offers information on non-subscriber schools, though you'll want to check directly with them for the most current information. Whether you want to work in automotive, hvac, health care, construction, paralegal or any technology field, you'll find the courses and programs here that may help you achieve your career and life goals.

Search By U.S. Cities:

Atlanta Trade Schools, Chicago Trade Schools, Dallas Trade Schools, Houston Trade Schools, Los Angeles Trade Schools, Philadelphia Trade Schools, Riverside Trade Schools, Sacramento Trade Schools, San Antonio Trade Schools, San Diego Trade Schools

Trade Schools by State:

Washington D.C.CaliforniaVirginiaNew York, PennsylvaniaMassachusettsTexasFloridaNew JerseyIllinoisMarylandOhioGeorgiaNorth CarolinaMichiganArizonaTennessee.

Find Colleges by State

To find more information on trade schools in a certain region, use our interactive map to find the state where you'd like to attend school. Click on your state in the map, or scroll through the list of states next to it. Each state will have some information on schools, programs and jobs, including salary and job growth data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

AL Alabama
AK Alaska
AZ Arizona
AR Arkansas
CA California
CO Colorado
CT Connecticut
DE Delaware
DC District Of Columbia
FL Florida
GA Georgia
HI Hawaii
ID Idaho
IL Illinois
IN Indiana
IA Iowa
KS Kansas
KY Kentucky
LA Louisiana
ME Maine
MD Maryland
MA Massachusetts
MI Michigan
MN Minnesota
MS Mississippi
MO Missouri
MT Montana
NE Nebraska
NV Nevada
NH New Hampshire
NJ New Jersey
NM New Mexico
NY New York
NC North Carolina
ND North Dakota
OH Ohio
OK Oklahoma
OR Oregon
PA Pennsylvania
RI Rhode Island
SC South Carolina
SD South Dakota
TN Tennessee
TX Texas
UT Utah
VT Vermont
VA Virginia
WA Washington
WV West Virginia
WI Wisconsin
WY Wyoming
Popular Vocational Careers

When we talk about vocational careers, we mean jobs that typically require less than a four-year degree for entry-level positions. Additionally, they often require specialized training for a specific job, and many emphasize the importance of hands-on training. Browse our list of the popular vocational career pages, where you'll find more information such as education requirements, job growth, employment availability and salary data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.


Selects, lays out metal to be cut & joined following engineering instructions & measuring instruments

Culinary Arts

Prepares food using various cooking methods, monitors food production to ensure quality & hygiene.

Veterinary Technician

In a support role for veterinarians, observes, tests and assists in treating animals.

Radiology Technologist

Performs diagnostic imaging like X-Rays & MRI scans, carries out radiation therapy treatments, etc.

HVAC Technician

Installs & maintains heating & air conditioning systems in buildings, schools, hospitals, etc…

Skilled Trades

Includes those who work as electricians, plumbers, welders, machinists, etc.

Automotive Technician and Mechanic

Repairs, inspects and performs maintenance on vehicles.

Pharmacy Technician

Assists pharmacists in the dispensing of prescription medications to patients and medical personnel.

Select a Career by Category

If you know what industry you generally want to be in, but are not sure of a specific job, try browsing a few related careers by category. Click on a category icon, and see a few suggestions for careers in that industry. You can click through to find out more about each job, including salary information, job growth and education requirements.

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Helpful Links

O*NET Online - Occupational Information Online - O*Net replaces the Dictionary of Occupational Titles (DOT)

The Student Guide: Federal Financial Aid Programs - An overview of current federal financial aid programs, FASFA Link

NASFAA - An association of over 3,000 colleges and career schools with an interest in effective administration of student financial aid

U.S. Department of Labor - Employment & Training Administration (ETA) - Links to the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), Grants, Conferences and Hot news issues

Occupational Outlook Handbook - The premier Government publication on career guidance that provides essential information concerning changes in the world of work and the qualifications that will be necessary for tomorrow's workers

NACCAS - National Accrediting Commission for Barbering/Cosmetology/Massage Therapy Vocational Schools

Virtual Diagnostics - Offers career assessments for individuals exploring their career options. All tests are professionally developed by a psychologist and provided to individuals for their self-development.

Find a One-Stop Career Center - The Workforce Investment Act (WIA) is a federally mandated program that is administered by the State. The State has One-Stop Centers to HELP you with Job Search, WIA Eligibility, FREE Vocational Training and many other services. If you are a Dislocated Worker you may receive funding to HELP you get Vocational Training in that new Career.