Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Updated November 2, 2022

Alabama vocational schools offer rigorous and relevant training in a variety of career fields. Curricula vary by program, but learners develop career-specific skills.

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Why Choose Trade Schools?

Many high-paying, fast-growing career fields do not require a four-year degree. Employers often seek candidates with job-specific skills and industry certifications. Trade schools in Alabama provide rigorous and relevant training in a variety of career fields.Students often choose vocational schools in order to enter the workforce sooner. Curricula vary by program, but learners develop career-specific skills and knowledge. Many programs also lead to industry certifications. While the time necessary to graduate varies, most students complete their technical education within two years. According to 2009 data from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), students who earn an occupational scredential are more likely to work in a career related to their studies than learners who obtain an academic credential.

Most technical colleges in Alabama deliver programs that incorporate hands-on training. Instructors often work closely with local employers to provide internship or cooperative education opportunities. Even online vocational programs typically include the application of practical skills.

Alabama vocational schools offer training in fields such as healthcare, manufacturing, and business. Common vocational programs include dental hygiene, pharmacy technician, hospitality management, heating and cooling, and automotive repair. Most technical schools admit both recent high school graduates and working professionals who intend to change careers.

FAQ About Vocational Schools in Alabama


Can I go to trade school online?

Yes, many trade and vocational programs offer online learning opportunities.These programs require excellent time-management skills and self-sufficiency. However, online programs offer greater flexibility than on-campus options, which can be ideal for working professionals.

Can I get financial aid for trade school?

Federal and state financial aid is available to students attending accredited vocational schools in Alabama. However, learners at programs that do not meet minimum length requirements may not be eligible for aid.

Are scholarships available for vocational students?

Yes, many schools, civic organizations, and charitable organizations offer scholarships for students pursuing a trade or vocational education. This guide includes several examples.

Can trade school credits transfer?

Learners can often transfer credits from trade or vocational schools toward a two-year or four-year degree. Some vocational schools maintain articulation agreements with community colleges and universities.

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Accreditation and Licensing for Trade Schools

Accrediting agencies provide an impartial quality check of a school's academic and career preparation programs. Vocational schools in Alabama can receive accreditation from the Southern Association for Colleges and Schools Council on Occupational Education. Institutions can also seek accreditation from a national accrediting agency that focuses on trade and career preparation, such as the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges.

Additionally, the Distance Education Accrediting Commission awards accreditation to schools that provide distance education programs. The Council for Higher Education Accreditation and the Department of Education maintain online databases of recognized accrediting agencies. Learners can also use this list of the best online institutions of 2020 to select a school that fits their needs.

The accreditation process includes a thorough review of the school's curriculum standards, faculty credentials, and student success. Agencies often consider the job placements of graduates and whether the institution's programs prepare learners to succeed in their chosen profession. Many vocational schools also work with national certification agencies to align their curricula to industry certification requirements.

In addition to institutional accreditation, learners can look for programmatic accreditation. Individual programs may receive accreditation from field-specific agencies, such as the American Council for Construction Education, the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation, and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs. These organizations ensure each program's curriculum meets industry standards for training and education.

Although accreditation is a voluntary process, all schools must obtain a state license to serve students. The Private School Licensure Division of the Alabama Community College System authorizes schools to educate Alabama students through on-campus and distance programs. The licensing process involves a review of the school's academic requirements to ensure its educational programs meet set standards.

Programs that lead to state licensure should also hold authorization from the appropriate state agency. For example, practical nursing programs in the state should hold recognition from the Alabama Board of Nursing.

Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama

The rankings below offer a snapshot of the best vocational schools in Alabama. However, students should consider their individual needs when selecting a school. Learners should choose an institution and program that aligns with their educational and career goals. Other important factors include cost and degree-completion time.

#1 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Gadsden State Community College

  • Gadsden, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Gadsden State Community College provides 23 associate programs and 42 certificate programs for students. From its main campus in Alabama, the public institution offers both online and on-campus enrollment options. Students enrolled at the school rely on the flexible options to balance classes with work.

The school's career-focused programs provide the knowledge and skills required for specialized roles. Associate programs include general education classes that strengthen critical thinking and writing skills. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum with no general education requirements.

A certificate trains graduates for entry-level positions in a specific field. With an associate degree, graduates either pursue employment or transfer into a bachelor's program.

Gadsden State Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 7

Total Online Certificate Programs: 7

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
55%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
4,599
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
51% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#2 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Wallace State Community College

  • Hanceville, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Students enroll in 34 associate programs and 48 certificate programs at Wallace State Community College. The public institution prioritizes flexibility in its course options, which include classes offered online and on the Hanceville, Alabama, campus. Students often choose to work while enrolled at the school.

The school's career-focused programs provide cutting-edge training in specific career paths. Associate programs include general education requirements that build broad, transferable skills. Certificate candidates complete courses related specifically to one area of study, with no general education courses required.

Certificate recipients can move directly into the workforce in entry-level positions. With an associate degree, graduates apply for jobs or pursue a bachelor's degree.

Wallace State Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 2

Total Online Certificate Programs: 4

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
63%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
4,985
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
47% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#3 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Northwest-Shoals Community College

  • Muscle Shoals, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Students advance their education in 15 associate programs and 33 certificate programs at Northwest-Shoals Community College. Learners benefit from flexible enrollment options at the public institution, which includes online enrollment and classes on the Muscle Shoals, Alabama, campus. Busy students benefit from the school's flexible options, which make it easier to work while in college.

In the school's career-focused programs, learners gain industry-specific skills. Associate programs incorporate general education courses to build transferable skills such as critical thinking and writing. Instead of general education courses, certificate candidates take courses in their field of study.

Professionals can apply for positions in their field with a certificate. An associate degree prepares graduates for the workforce or bachelor's programs.

Northwest-Shoals Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 2

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
60%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
3,512
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
36% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#4 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Shelton State Community College

  • Tuscaloosa, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

At Shelton State Community College, students advance their education in 22 associate programs and 50 certificate programs. Located in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, the public institution stands out for its flexible enrollment options, which include online and on-campus classes. These flexible options make it easier for students to balance school with work or other responsibilities.

The school's career-focused programs train learners for specialized career paths. Associate programs include general education classes that strengthen critical thinking and writing skills. Certificate candidates take focused classes in their field rather than general education classes.

With a certificate, graduates move into the workforce and pursue entry-level roles. With an associate degree, graduates either pursue employment or transfer into a bachelor's program.

Shelton State Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 2

Total Online Certificate Programs: 1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
66%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
4,201
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
44% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#5 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Northeast Alabama Community College

  • Rainsville, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

At Northeast Alabama Community College, learners can strengthen their skills in 16 associate programs and 26 certificate programs. Learners benefit from the public institution's diverse enrollment options, which include online classes and on-campus options at the Rainsville location. Students enrolled at the school rely on the flexible options to balance classes with work.

The school's career-focused programs emphasize industry-specific knowledge and skills. Associate programs incorporate general education classes that strengthen writing, communication, and other soft skills. Certificate candidates complete courses related specifically to one area of study, with no general education courses required.

A certificate trains graduates for entry-level positions in a specific field. An associate degree prepares graduates for the workforce or bachelor's programs.

Northeast Alabama Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
70%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
2,981
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
61% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#6 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Bishop State Community College

  • Mobile, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Bishop State Community College offers 18 associate programs and 22 certificate programs. The public institution prioritizes flexibility in its course options, which include classes offered online and on the Mobile, Alabama, campus. These flexible options help students work while in school.

In the school's career-focused programs, enrollees strengthen industry-specific knowledge and skills. Associate programs incorporate general education courses to build transferable skills like critical thinking and writing. Certificate candidates complete courses related specifically to one area of study, with no general education classes required.

A certificate prepares graduates for entry-level positions in their field. After earning an associate degree, graduates enter the workforce or transfer into a bachelor's program.

Bishop State Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 9

Total Online Certificate Programs: 5

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,870

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,740

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,870
Out-of-state
$7,740
Retention Rate
51%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
2,846
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
19% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#7 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Jefferson State Community College

  • Birmingham, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Students choose from 20 associate programs and 25 certificate programs at Jefferson State Community College. Located in Birmingham, Alabama, the public institution offers online and on-campus enrollment options, increasing flexibility for learners. These enrollment options appeal to working students and other busy learners.

The school's career-focused programs provide cutting-edge training in specific career paths. The general education courses in associate programs build transferable skills like critical thinking, communication, and writing. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum that does not include classes outside of their field.

With a certificate, graduates pursue entry-level positions in their field. With an associate degree, graduates either enter the workforce or transfer to four-year colleges.

Jefferson State Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 3

Total Online Certificate Programs: 8

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
58%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
8,711
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
39% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#8 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Trenholm State Community College

  • Montgomery, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

Trenholm State Community College offers 20 associate programs and 24 certificate programs. Located in Montgomery, Alabama, the public institution stands out for its flexible enrollment options, which include online and on-campus classes. Busy students benefit from the school's flexible options, which make it easier to work while in college.

The school's career-focused programs strengthen specialized skills that prepare graduates for the job market. The general education courses in associate programs build transferable skills including critical thinking, communication, and writing. Certificate candidates complete courses in their field of study without general education requirements.

Professionals apply for entry-level roles in their field after completing a certificate. After an associate degree, graduates apply for jobs or continue their education at the bachelor's level.

Trenholm State Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
54%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
2,042
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
30% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#9 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Lurleen B. Wallace Community College

  • Andalusia, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Lurleen B. Wallace Community College provides 11 associate programs and 19 certificate programs for students. The public institution, located in Andalusia, Alabama, offers online and on-campus enrollment options, which appeal to a variety of learners. Students often choose to work while enrolled at the college.

Many of the school's programs encourage learners to train for a particular vocation after graduation. Associate programs include general education classes that strengthen soft skills like communication and writing. Rather than taking general education courses, certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum of courses in their field of study.

A certificate prepares graduates for entry-level positions in their field. With an associate degree, graduates apply for jobs or pursue a bachelor's degree.

Lurleen B. Wallace Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 2

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
60%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,767
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
47% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#10 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Calhoun Community College

  • Tanner, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

At Calhoun Community College, learners can study in 15 associate programs and 19 certificate programs. From its main campus in Tanner, Alabama, the public institution offers both online and on-campus enrollment options. These enrollment options appeal to working students and other busy learners.

In the school's career-focused programs, enrollees train for a defined career path. In general education courses, associate degree-seekers strengthen critical thinking, communication, and writing skills. Certificate candidates take classes related to their field with no requirements outside of their major.

A certificate helps graduates advance their career or move into a new role. With an associate degree, graduates can enter the job market or apply to four-year colleges.

Calhoun Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 1

Total Online Certificate Programs: 1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
65%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
9,315
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
48% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#11 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Coastal Alabama Community College

  • Bay Minette, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

At Coastal Alabama Community College, learners choose from 23 associate programs and 43 certificate programs. From its Bay Minette campus, the public institution lets learners choose from online and on-campus enrollment options. Students can sometimes work full time while in school.

In the school's career-focused programs, enrollees train for a defined career path after graduation. Associate programs incorporate general education courses to build transferable skills like critical thinking and writing. Certificate candidates complete courses in their field of study without general education requirements.

A certificate trains graduates for entry-level positions in a specific field. An associate degree prepares graduates for the workforce or bachelor's programs.

Coastal Alabama Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
56%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
7,535
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
43% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#12 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Lawson State Community College

  • Birmingham, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Lawson State Community College provides 18 associate programs and 53 certificate programs for students. The public institution offers flexible enrollment options, including online classes and courses offered at the Birmingham, Alabama, campus. The flexible course options make it easier for students to work while pursuing a certificate or degree.

Many of the school's programs encourage learners to train for a particular vocation after graduation. Associate programs include general education classes that strengthen soft skills like communication and writing. Certificate candidates complete courses in their field of study without general education requirements.

A certificate helps graduates advance their career or move into a new role. After earning an associate degree, graduates enter the workforce or transfer into a bachelor's program.

Lawson State Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 1

Total Online Certificate Programs: 2

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
58%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
3,375
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
27% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#13 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

J. F. Drake State Community and Technical College

  • Huntsville, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

At J. F. Drake State Community and Technical College, students learn in 14 associate programs and 21 certificate programs. Learners benefit from the public institution's diverse enrollment options, which include online classes and on-campus options at the Huntsville, Alabama, location. Working professionals benefit from the flexibility to attend school without leaving their job.

In the school's career-focused programs, enrollees gain specialized skills for a defined career path or field. Associate programs include general education classes that strengthen critical thinking and writing skills. Instead of general education courses, certificate candidates complete classes related to their field.

A certificate helps graduates advance their career or move into a new role. After earning an associate degree, graduates can apply for jobs or continue their education at a four-year college.

J. F. Drake State Community and Technical College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
41%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
789
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
44% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#14 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Enterprise State Community College

  • Enterprise, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

Enterprise State Community College enrolls students in 11 associate programs and 17 certificate programs. Learners choose from online and on-campus courses offered from the Alabama campus of the public institution. The flexible course options make it easier for students to work while pursuing a certificate or degree.

The school's career-focused programs emphasize industry-specific knowledge and skills. In associate programs, degree-seekers strengthen transferable skills during general education classes. Rather than taking general education courses, certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum related to their field of study.

A certificate helps graduates advance their career or move into a new role. After earning an associate degree, graduates pursue employment or apply to bachelor's programs.

Enterprise State Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
62%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,804
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
42% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#15 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Southern Union State Community College

  • Wadley, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

Southern Union State Community College provides 22 associate programs and 45 certificate programs for students. Learners benefit from flexible enrollment options at the public institution, which includes online enrollment and classes on the Wadley, Alabama, campus. The flexible course options make it easier for students to work while pursuing a certificate or degree.

In the school's career-focused programs, enrollees gain specialized skills for a defined career path or field. Associate programs incorporate general education classes that strengthen writing, communication, and other soft skills. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum with no general education requirements.

A certificate helps graduates advance their career or move into a new role. With an associate degree, graduates either enter the workforce or apply to four-year colleges as a transfer student.

Southern Union State Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
64%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
4,655
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
29% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#16 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

J. F. Ingram State Technical College

  • Deatsville, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

J. F. Ingram State Technical College provides two associate programs and 35 certificate programs for students. Located in Deatsville, Alabama, the public institution stands out for its flexible enrollment options, which include online and on-campus classes. Degree and certificate students often balance school with work.

The school's career-focused programs train learners for specialized career paths. Associate programs include general education classes that strengthen critical thinking and writing skills. Certificate candidates complete courses in their field of study, without general education requirements.

A certificate trains graduates for entry-level positions in a specific field. With an associate degree, graduates apply for jobs or pursue a bachelor's degree.

J. F. Ingram State Technical College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $4,716

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $4,716

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,716
Out-of-state
$4,716
Retention Rate
77%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
485
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
Not provided
Accreditation
Yes Council on Occupational Education

#17 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Bevill State Community College

  • Jasper, AL
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

At Bevill State Community College, learners can strengthen their skills in 16 associate programs and 35 certificate programs. The public institution, located in Jasper, Alabama, offers online and on-campus enrollment options, which appeal to a variety of learners. Working professionals benefit from the flexibility to attend school without leaving their job.

In the school's career-focused programs, enrollees strengthen industry-specific knowledge and skills. Associate degree-seekers also complete general education courses that build broad skills such as writing and critical thinking. Certificate candidates take courses in their area of study rather than general education courses.

Professionals apply for entry-level roles in their field after completing a certificate. After earning an associate degree, graduates can pursue jobs or continue their education at a four-year college.

Bevill State Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 3

Total Online Certificate Programs: 3

Undergrad Tuition In State: $4,192

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $8,384

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,192
Out-of-state
$8,384
Retention Rate
63%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
3,787
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
28% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#18 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Chattahoochee Valley Community College

  • Phenix City, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

Chattahoochee Valley Community College offers 14 associate programs and 16 certificate programs. From its main campus in Phenix City, Alabama, the public institution offers both online and on-campus enrollment options. Busy students benefit from the school's flexible options, which make it easier to work while in college.

Most associate degree and certificate programs build specialized skills related to a defined career path or field of employment. The general education courses in associate programs build transferable skills like critical thinking, communication, and writing. Instead of general education classes, certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum in their area of study.

With a certificate, graduates enter the workforce prepared for many entry-level roles. Associate degree graduates can either pursue employment or transfer into a bachelor's program.

Chattahoochee Valley Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
50%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,592
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
30% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#19 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Snead State Community College

  • Boaz, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

At Snead State Community College, students can study in nine associate programs and 16 certificate programs. Located in Boaz, Alabama, the public institution stands out for its flexible enrollment options, which include online and on-campus classes. Many students work while pursuing a degree or certificate.

Many of the school's certificate and associate programs emphasize industry-specific skills that prepare graduates for a particular career path. In associate programs, degree-seekers strengthen transferable skills during general education classes. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum with no general education requirements.

Professionals with a certificate enter the workforce and apply for jobs in their field. After earning an associate degree, graduates apply for jobs or continue their education at a four-year college.

Snead State Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
62%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
2,237
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
79% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#20 Vocational Trade Schools in Alabama [2022 Guide]

Reid State Technical College

  • Evergreen, AL
  • 2 years
  • Campus

Students advance their education in three associate programs and 13 certificate programs at Reid State Technical College. Based in Evergreen, Alabama, this public college features both online and on-campus enrollment options, creating flexibility for all types of learners. Degree and certificate students often balance school with work.

Many of the school's programs strengthen career-focused skills that train learners for a particular role. Associate programs incorporate general education classes that strengthen writing, communication, and other soft skills. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum with no general education requirements.

A certificate prepares graduates for the workforce. After earning an associate degree, graduates often pursue employment or apply to bachelor's programs.

Reid State Technical College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,930

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $7,860

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,930
Out-of-state
$7,860
Retention Rate
50%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
489
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
Not provided
Accreditation
Yes Council on Occupational Education

Career and Salary Outlook for Trade School Graduates

Many trade schools in Alabama offer programs that lead to positions in high-growth career fields. Graduates often earn above-average salaries and enjoy high levels of job security. The state's economic and industrial recruitment efforts impact the availability of certain trade programs.

For example, according to the Alabama Department of Commerce, Alabama ranks among the top states for aerospace and aviation engineers. Projections Central projects employment for aircraft mechanics and avionics technicians to increase 37.9% and 35.7%, respectively, in Alabama from 2016 to 2026.

Salary potential for graduates of technical schools in Alabama depends on the individual's industry, training, and experience. For example, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), avionics technicians earn a median annual salary of $59,120 nationally and $54,410 in Alabama.

Prospective students can explore employment projections from the BLS to understand their career options. Recent data from the BLS projects healthcare positions to comprise a large portion of jobs created from 2018 to 2028. Users on the BLS website can also research each occupation's median salary and top-paying industries.

What Kinds of Trade School Programs Are Available?

Many vocational schools in Alabama work in tandem with workforce development programs to help industry partners develop their workforce. Ambulatory healthcare services is one of the state's top industries, according to the BLS, and trade school programming in the state includes several medical training opportunities. Alabama is also home to large automotive manufacturing facilities and aerospace and aviation companies. See below for several popular vocational programs at technical colleges in Alabama.

  1. 1

    Paramedic

    Paramedics provide advanced medical care outside of hospital settings. Paramedics often provide the first level of intervention after a medical emergency or traumatic injury. Paramedics assess each patient's condition, provide first aid or life support, and transport the patient in an ambulance to a medical facility.

    Projections Central projects a 13.7% increase in employment opportunities for paramedics in Alabama from 2016 to 2026. According to BLS data, about 3,780 paramedics and EMTs currently work in the state. Paramedic positions require1-2 years of training, and students must already have a valid advanced EMT license.

    To qualify for work as paramedics, graduates must obtain a paramedic license from the Alabama Department of Public Health and pass the paramedic exam from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians. To ensure they are eligible to pursue licensure, students should select an accredited paramedic training program.

  2. 2

    Dental Hygiene

    Dental hygienists work primarily in the dentists' offices, providing patient care during routine dental exams. Hygienists often conduct cleanings to remove plaque and tartar, take X-rays, and assess oral health. They discuss treatment plans and help educate patients about proper brushing and flossing.

    Many dental hygienist preparation programs require two years of education and lead to an associate degree. These programs combine classroom instruction with clinical and laboratory training. The BLS reports that 3,790 dental hygienists work in Alabama and projects the occupation to increase 17.9% from 2016 to 2026. Alabama requires hygienists to hold a state license from the Board of Dental Examiners of Alabama. This guide provides information about dental hygienist schools and curricula.

  3. 3

    Paralegal Studies

    Paralegals and legal assistants work with licensed attorneys to manage law offices, organize legal paperwork, and research laws and opinions. Projections Central projects employment for paralegals to increase 13.7% from 2016 to 2026. Alabama paralegals earn an average annual salary of $47,380.

    Some paralegals complete only on-the-job training, while others earn a four-year degree in legal studies. Many paralegals complete certificate programs to quickly enter the workforce.Certificate programs in the field help learners develop skills including conducting online legal research and writing court documents. Some paralegal programs take only a few months to complete, while others require a year or longer.

    Alabama maintains no licensing requirements for paralegals. However, industry certifications demonstrate knowledge and expertise to prospective employers. This resource provides additional information about paralegal training.

  4. 4

    Medical Assistant Programs

    Projections Central projects employment of medical assistants in Alabama to increase 24.7% from 2016 to 2026. This growth is likely due in part to the anticipated increase in patient volume. Medical assistants work primarily in physicians' offices, where they record vital signs and take patient histories. These professionals may also handle administrative tasks, such as completing insurance forms with medical codes and managing electronic health records.

    Some medical assistants specialize in optometry or podiatry. Training for this position typically takes 1-2 years and may culminate in a certificate or diploma. Medical assistants can pursue industry certifications, such as certified medical assistant or certified clinical medical assistant credential.

    According to the BLS, medical assistants in Alabama earn an average salary of $29,220 per year. This guide includes information about accredited medical assistant certificate programs.

  5. 5

    Construction Management

    Construction managers oversee building projects, from the planning stage through completion. These professionals schedule workers, order supplies, and manage budgets. Projections Central projects a 7.5% employment growth for construction management occupations in Alabama. Construction managers in the state earn an average annual salary of $98,550, according to the BLS.

    Several technical schools in Alabama offer building construction programs. These two-year programs lead to an associate degree and help learners develop the skills necessary to enter the construction field or advance their career. Courses typically include reading blueprints, workplace safety, contracting and construction law, and construction estimating.

    Construction managers can demonstrate their expertise through industry certifications from the Construction Management Association of America and the American Institute of Contractors. Alabama requires construction managers to hold a general contractor license from the State Licensing Board for General Contractors. This page includes information about the best construction management programs.

Financial Aid for Trade School Students

Trade schools in Alabama offer high-quality educational programs that typically cost less than four-year degrees. According to NCES data, the average cost of tuition and fees at four-year public universities in Alabama was $9,827 for the 2017-18 academic year, while tuition and fees at two-year schools in the state averaged $3,243 for the same time period.

The Alabama Community College System includes 24 schools, with campus locations throughout the state. Learners at two-year institutions in Alabama can pursue certificates or associate degrees, and they often save on costs related to housing and transportation. Additionally, some schools offer distance education options, which can further reduce costs.

Federal and state financial aid programs can help defray the cost of career training and education. Learners should complete the FAFSA to determine their eligibility for federal funding. Trade school students can qualify for need-based aid, such as the Pell Grant, which offers up to $6,345 for the 2020-21 academic year.

The Alabama Commission on Higher Education administers several state financial aid programs, such as the Alabama Student Assistance Program, which delivers $300-$5,000 per academic year to eligible students. Unlike loans, these awards do not require repayment.

Learners can also apply for scholarships to help cover the cost of tuition, books, and equipment. Students can also consider federal student loans, some of which offer deferred interest charges.

Scholarships for Trade School Students

In addition to grants, learners can apply for scholarships to help fund their education. The scholarships below are available to students attending trade schools in Alabama. Learners can contact their school's financial aid office for information about institutional scholarships. Students can also pursue scholarship opportunities from civic organizations, employers, and philanthropic organizations.

Alabama Home Builders Foundation Scholarship


Who Can Apply: This award supports Alabama residents pursuing a construction-related program at an accredited junior college, university, or technical school in Alabama. The scholarship committee considers financial need, and past recipients may reapply.

Amount: Varies


Association of Schools Advancing Health Professions


Who Can Apply: Students enrolled in career entry-level, degree-granting programs in any health discipline can apply for this award. Learners must be attending a participating school in Alabama. Applicants must submit a resume and one-page essay on their career goals.

Amount: $1,000


Baptist Health Care Foundation Scholarships


Who Can Apply: Baptist Health employees and their families can apply for the family scholarship program. The award supports students seeking postsecondary education in an allied health field. Based in Montgomery, Alabama, Baptist Health maintains facilities throughout Central Alabama.

Amount: $1,000


E.L. Gibson Foundation Scholarship


Who Can Apply: Administered by Enterprise State Community College, this fund supports students seeking a degree in an allied health field, such as respiratory therapy, nursing, or radiology. Applicants must live in Coffee County or the surrounding region.

Amount: Varies


Mercedes-Benz U.S. International Scholarships


Who Can Apply: These awards support Alabama high school seniors from Jefferson and Tuscaloosa Counties. Applicants must plan to continue their education in a vocational or college program. The company awards 10 scholarships each year, with five reserved for the dependents of Mercedes-Benz team members.

Amount: $2,000

Additional Education and Career Resources

Division of the Arkansas Department of Education that oversees career education, including adult education, career and technical education and rehabilitation services. Comprehensive resource for information about vocational and trade education in Arkansas' school system. BLURProvides a variety of resources related to Arkansas' workforce, including information about career training, employment, and the state's labor market.fB A college and career planning system to help Arkansas students learn about potential careers and the education necessary to get them. Labor market information resource for Arkansas. Includes current employment data, industry and occupation projections, and helpful guides for individual vocational career clusters.

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