Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

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Updated November 3, 2022

In Colorado, many trade schools offer vocational programs.... Students can pursue careers as occupational therapy assistants, mechanics, respiratory therapists,

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Why Choose Trade School?

Vocational and trade schools in Colorado provide career-focused training in areas like allied health, technology, the skilled trades, and legal services. Trade school graduates can pursue careers as occupational therapy assistants, mechanics, respiratory therapists, electricians, and paralegals. Many of these in-demand fields offer above-average salaries and strong projected job growth.

Vocational programs offer several benefits over four-year academic programs. For example, completing a vocational certificate or degree generally takes 1-2 years, meaning learners can enter the workforce faster than students at four-year programs. Vocational schools also often typically cost much less than four-year programs.

Additionally, professionals with an occupational credential benefit from a higher employment rate than professionals with an academic credential, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

Many vocational and technical schools in Colorado offer self-paced or accelerated options to fit the schedule of busy students. Learners can also consider online vocational programs, which prioritize flexibility.

During a vocational program, students complete coursework and hands-on training. For example, paramedic studies students build their emergency care skills through laboratory and experiential learning requirements, while electrician students apply their training during practicum requirements.

Our list introduces the top-ranked trade schools in Colorado. By researching these schools, prospective students can find the best fit for their interests and professional goals. This page also provides information on the career and salary outlook for trade school graduates and scholarship opportunities for students.

FAQ

Can I go to trade school online?

Yes. Many trade schools offer online vocational programs. During an online program, students complete coursework in a distance learning format while meeting any onsite requirements locally.

Are scholarships available for vocational students?

Yes. Vocational students qualify for many scholarship and grant opportunities. Some scholarships require attendance at an accredited institution.

When can I apply to trade school?

Many trade schools accept applications on a rolling basis, meaning new students can apply at any time. Most programs also offer multiple start dates throughout the year.

How long does trade school take?

Earning a certificate or degree from a vocational school generally takes 1-2 years, depending on the program. Students receive classroom and experiential training during their program.

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Accreditation and Licensing for Trade Schools

Prospective trade school students should always check a school's accreditation and licensure status before applying. Attending an unaccredited or unlicensed school can affect a student's education and their ability to find jobs after completing a program.

Accredited schools meet high standards for educating students. To earn accreditation, colleges and universities undergo a rigorous review from an independent accrediting agency. During the review, the agency evaluates the school's student learning outcomes, academic mission, and faculty qualifications. Accredited institutions must regularly repeat the review process to maintain their status.

Accreditation benefits students in several ways. For instance, only students at accredited schools qualify for federal financial aid, and many schools only accept degrees and transfer credits from accredited institutions. Additionally, many professional licenses and certifications require an accredited degree.

In Colorado, schools that offer vocational programs may hold regional or national accreditation. Community colleges and four-year universities typically hold regional accreditation. The Higher Learning Commission grants regional accreditation to schools in Colorado.

Vocational and trade schools in Colorado often hold national accreditation from a specialized agency like the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC), which holds approval from the Department of Education. ACCSC grants accreditation to over 650 trade and technical schools nationwide. Other specialized agencies, such as the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, accredit online schools. Learn more about the accreditation process here.

Postsecondary schools also need a state license to educate students. In Colorado, the Department of Education maintains a list of licensed schools.

Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado

Vocational schools in Colorado prepare students for careers in growing fields. By choosing a top-ranked vocational program, professionals can advance their career and increase their earning potential. Our list ranks the best trade schools in Colorado to help prospective students find the right fit to reach their goals.

#1 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Pikes Peak Community College

  • Colorado Springs, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Pikes Peak Community College lets learners choose from 45 associate programs and 61 certificate programs. The public institution, located in Colorado Springs, offers online and on-campus enrollment options that appeal to a variety of learners. These flexible options help students work while in school.

Many of the school's programs emphasize career training and include practical skills. Associate programs incorporate general education classes that strengthen writing, communication, and other soft skills. Certificate candidates take focused classes in their field rather than general education classes.

A certificate helps graduates advance their career or move into a new role. With an associate degree, graduates apply for jobs or pursue a bachelor's degree.

Pikes Peak Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 11

Total Online Certificate Programs: 12

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $14,662

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$14,662
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
13,655
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
37% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#2 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Red Rocks Community College

  • Lakewood, CO
  • 4 years
  • Campus

At Red Rocks Community College, learners choose from 40 associate programs and 56 certificate programs. Learners choose between online and on-campus courses offered from the Lakewood, Colorado, campus of the public institution. These flexible options appeal to busy students balancing school with other obligations.

The school's career-focused programs emphasize industry-specific knowledge and skills. Associate programs incorporate general education courses to build transferable skills like critical thinking and writing. Certificate candidates take classes related to their field with no requirements outside of their major.

With a certificate, graduates enter the workforce prepared for many entry-level roles. With an associate degree, graduates can enter the job market or apply to four-year colleges as a transfer student.

Red Rocks Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $14,661

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$14,661
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
7,008
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
28% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#3 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Front Range Community College

  • Westminster, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

With 35 associate programs and 61 certificate programs, Front Range Community College offers options for many students. Learners select from online and on-campus courses offered by the public institution from its location in Westminster, Colorado. Many students work while pursuing a degree or certificate.

The school's career-focused programs provide cutting-edge training in specific career paths. Associate degree-seekers also complete general education courses that build broad skills such as writing and critical thinking. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum with no general education requirements.

A certificate helps graduates advance their career or move into a new role. Associate degree graduates can either pursue employment or transfer into a bachelor's program.

Front Range Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 1

Total Online Certificate Programs: 6

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $14,662

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$14,662
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
19,283
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
30% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#4 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Community College of Denver

  • Denver, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Community College of Denver enrolls students in 26 associate programs and 33 certificate programs. Learners benefit from flexible enrollment options at the public institution, which includes online enrollment and classes on the Colorado campus. These enrollment options appeal to working students and other busy learners.

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 take general education courses that strengthen critical thinking and writing skills. Certificate candidates take courses in their field with no required general education classes.

A certificate prepares graduates for entry-level positions in their field. After an associate degree, graduates enter the workforce or apply to bachelor's programs as a transfer student.

Community College of Denver at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 5

Total Online Certificate Programs: 2

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $14,662

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$14,662
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
8,232
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
24% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#5 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Arapahoe Community College

  • Littleton, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

At Arapahoe Community College, learners can strengthen their skills in 36 associate programs and 50 certificate programs. From its main campus in Littleton, Colorado, the public institution offers both online and on-campus enrollment options. Many students work while pursuing a degree or certificate.

The school's career-focused programs provide cutting-edge training in specific career paths. In associate programs, degree-seekers strengthen transferable skills during general education classes. Certificate candidates take courses in their area of study rather than general education courses.

With a certificate, graduates apply for entry-level positions in their field. After earning an associate degree, graduates pursue employment or apply to bachelor's programs as a transfer student.

Arapahoe Community College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $14,662

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$14,662
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
12,759
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
35% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#6 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Aims Community College

  • Greeley, CO
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Aims Community College offers vocational and academic programs, with 44 associate programs and 52 certificate programs. Learners select from online and on-campus courses offered by the public institution from its location in Greeley, Colorado. Many students work while pursuing a degree or certificate.

Many of the school's programs encourage learners to train for a particular vocation. Associate programs incorporate general education courses to build transferable skills like critical thinking and writing. Instead of taking general education classes, certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum in their area of study.

Professionals apply for positions in their field with a certificate. An associate degree prepares graduates for entry-level careers or bachelor's programs.

Aims Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $2,544

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $10,200

Average Tuition
In-state
$2,544
Out-of-state
$10,200
Retention Rate
76%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
6,634
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
28% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#7 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Colorado Mountain College

  • Glenwood Springs, CO
  • 4 years
  • Campus

Colorado Mountain College enrolls students in 37 associate programs and 60 certificate programs. The public institution prioritizes flexibility in its course options, which include classes offered online and on the Glenwood Springs campus. Working professionals benefit from the flexibility to attend school without leaving their job.

In the school's career-focused programs, enrollees train for a defined career path after graduation. General education classes in associate programs build key soft skills like communication, writing, and critical thinking. Certificate candidates take courses in their area of study rather than general education classes.

With a certificate, graduates apply for entry-level positions in their field. After earning an associate degree, graduates pursue employment or apply to bachelor's programs as a transfer student.

Colorado Mountain College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $4,320

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $10,872

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,320
Out-of-state
$10,872
Retention Rate
45%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
5,636
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
26% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#8 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Community College of Aurora

  • Aurora, CO
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Community College of Aurora offers 19 associate programs and 27 certificate programs. Located in Colorado, the public institution offers online and on-campus enrollment options, increasing flexibility for learners. Degree and certificate students often balance school with work.

The school's career-focused programs strengthen specialized skills that prepare graduates for the job market. Associate programs include general education classes that develop soft skills like communication and writing. Instead of general education courses, certificate candidates complete classes related to their field.

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

Community College of Aurora at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 4

Total Online Certificate Programs: 4

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $14,662

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$14,662
Retention Rate
65%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
8,597
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
18% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#9 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Pueblo Community College

  • Pueblo, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

At Pueblo Community College, learners can strengthen their skills in 42 associate programs and 68 certificate programs. From its Colorado campus, the public institution lets learners choose from online and on-campus enrollment options. These enrollment options appeal to working students and other busy learners.

Many of the school's programs emphasize career-focused skills that train learners for a particular role. Associate programs include general education classes that strengthen critical thinking and writing skills. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum with no general education requirements.

With a certificate, graduates apply for entry-level positions in their field. After earning an associate degree, graduates can enter the job market or apply to four-year colleges as a transfer student.

Pueblo Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Certificate Programs: 1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $4,429

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $15,512

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,429
Out-of-state
$15,512
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
6,545
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
25% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#10 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Colorado Mesa University

  • Grand Junction, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Colorado Mesa University provides 28 associate programs and 41 certificate programs for students. Located in Grand Junction, the public institution offers online and on-campus enrollment options, increasing flexibility for learners. Degree and certificate students often balance school with work.

The school's career-focused programs emphasize industry-specific knowledge and skills. Associate programs include general education requirements that build broad, transferable skills. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum that does not include classes outside of their field.

Professionals apply for positions in their field with a certificate. With an associate degree, graduates either enter the workforce or apply to four-year colleges as a transfer student.

Colorado Mesa University at a Glance:

Admission Rate: 78%

Total Online Associate Programs: 1

Total Online Certificate Programs: 1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $7,787

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $20,720

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,787
Out-of-state
$20,720
Retention Rate
74%
Admission Rate
78%
Students Enrolled
9,373
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
35% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#11 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Trinidad State Junior College

  • Trinidad, CO
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

With 28 associate programs and 42 certificate programs, Trinidad State Junior College offers options for many students. The public institution prioritizes flexibility in its course options, which include classes offered online and on the Colorado campus. These flexible options make it easier for students to balance school with work or other responsibilities.

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 take classes in their field with no required general education courses.

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

Trinidad State Junior College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 1

Total Online Certificate Programs: 1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $5,957

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$5,957
Retention Rate
59%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,621
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
23% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#12 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Pickens Technical College

  • Aurora, CO
  • 2 years
  • Campus

Students choose from 34 certificate programs at Pickens Technical College. Learners choose between online and on-campus courses offered from the Aurora, Colorado, campus of the public institution. Students often choose to work while enrolled at the school.

Many of the school's programs strengthen career-focused skills that train learners for a particular role. Associate programs incorporate general education courses to build transferable skills like critical thinking and writing. Certificate candidates complete a focused curriculum that does not include classes outside of their field.

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

Pickens Technical College at a Glance:

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,480

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $6,960

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,480
Out-of-state
$6,960
Retention Rate
69%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,049
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
Not provided
Accreditation
Yes Council on Occupational Education

#13 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Lamar Community College

  • Lamar, CO
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

With 13 associate programs and 18 certificate programs, Lamar Community College offers options for many students. Learners benefit from flexible enrollment options at the public institution, which includes online enrollment and classes on the Colorado campus. These flexible options help students work while in school.

Many of the school's certificate and associate programs emphasize industry-specific skills that prepare graduates for a particular career path. Associate programs include general education requirements that build broad, transferable skills. Certificate candidates take courses in their field with no required general education courses.

With a certificate, graduates apply for entry-level positions in their field. With an associate degree, graduates enter the workforce or continue their education at the bachelor's level.

Lamar Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Certificate Programs: 1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $5,956

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$5,956
Retention Rate
47%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
849
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
15% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#14 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Morgan Community College

  • Fort Morgan, CO
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

With 14 associate programs and 22 certificate programs, Morgan Community College offers options for many students. Located in Fort Morgan, Colorado, the public institution stands out for its flexible enrollment options, which include online and on-campus classes. Working professionals benefit from the flexibility to attend school without leaving their job.

In the school's career-focused programs, enrollees train for a defined career path after graduation. Associate programs include general education classes that strengthen critical thinking and writing skills. Certificate candidates complete courses related specifically to one area of study, with no general education courses required.

With a certificate, graduates move into the workforce and pursue entry-level roles. With an associate degree, graduates either enter the workforce or apply to four-year colleges as a transfer student.

Morgan Community College at a Glance:

Total Online Certificate Programs: 1

Undergrad Tuition In State: $3,574

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $14,662

Average Tuition
In-state
$3,574
Out-of-state
$14,662
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,266
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
59% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#15 Vocational Trade Schools in Colorado [2022 Guide]

Northeastern Junior College

  • Sterling, CO
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Northeastern Junior College enrolls students in 20 associate programs and 27 certificate programs. Learners benefit from flexible enrollment options at the public institution, which include online enrollment and classes on the Sterling, Colorado, campus. These flexible options help students work while in school.

The school's career-focused programs emphasize industry-specific knowledge and skills. The general education courses in associate programs build transferable skills like critical thinking, communication, and writing. Certificate candidates take classes related to their field with no requirements outside of their major.

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

Northeastern Junior College at a Glance:

Total Online Associate Programs: 7

Total Online Certificate Programs: 5

Undergrad Tuition In State: $4,467

Undergrad Tuition Out of State: $6,701

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,467
Out-of-state
$6,701
Retention Rate
65%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,390
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
17% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

Find Vocational and Trade Schools in Colorado

Colorado students can pursue career and technical education (CTE) at a variety of secondary schools, community colleges, and technical schools around the state. Students in these programs can study areas such as technology and communications, family and consumer sciences, and business and marketing.

Prospective students interested in finding a vocational school in Colorado can use the search tool below to explore their options.

Career and Salary Outlook for Trade School Graduates

Many trade school careers offer above-average salaries and strong projected job growth. Salaries vary by factors like role, industry, and location, but the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that trade school occupations pay an average annual salary of $55,000.

Trade school graduates can pursue opportunities in many fields with varying salary potential. For example, personal care and service occupations pay $32,700 per year, on average, while installation, maintenance, and repair occupations offer over $50,000 per year. Additionally, healthcare practitioner and technical occupations pay around $55,000 annually.

Location also affects the salary outlook for trade school graduates. In Colorado, BLS wage estimates indicate strong salary numbers for many trade occupations. For instance, respiratory therapists make an average salary of over $64,000 per year, while dental hygienists earn over $86,000 annually. Paralegals in the state earn over $62,000 per year and electricians make around $55,000 per year.

The BLS also reports much faster-than-average growth for several trade school occupations, including dental hygienists, paralegals, and HVAC technicians.

What Kinds of Trade School Programs Are Available?

Colorado trade school students can pursue certificates and degrees in many high-demand fields, including healthcare, the skilled trades, and personal services. This section covers some popular trade school programs in Colorado. In addition to these options, prospective students can research vocational programs in other fields.

  • Beauty and Cosmetology Schools

    Cosmetologists, hair stylists, and skincare specialists provide personal beauty services for clients. They recommend treatments, cut and style hair, and provide skincare services. Beauty professionals may also operate their own salon or barbershop.

    Careers in cosmetology generally require a vocational certificate or degree in the field. During a cosmetology program, students take courses in personal appearance services. Some programs also include classes in business management and marketing. Students also complete hands-on training to build career-ready skills.

    The earning potential for cosmetology jobs varies. Barbers, hair stylists, and cosmetologists earned a median annual salary of around $26,000 in 2019, while skincare specialists earned a median annual salary of $34,090. Many of these professionals need a license to practice. In Colorado, the Office of Barber and Cosmetology Licensure licenses cosmetologists.

    Learn more about beauty and cosmetology programs.

  • Electrician Schools

    Electricians install and maintain electrical systems in homes, businesses, and other buildings. They read blueprints and technical diagrams to install and repair wiring. Electricians also inspect electrical components, use testing devices to identify electrical problems, and conduct repairs. They must follow safety practices and regulations at all times.

    Technical colleges in Colorado train students in areas like circuitry, electrical theory, and safety practices. Learners also study electrical code requirements and build their professional skills through laboratory and practicum requirements.

    In 2019, the median annual salary for electricians exceeded $56,000, with faster-than-average projected job growth between 2018 and 2028. Electricians must typically pass a national examination and apply for a license to practice. In Colorado, the Electrical Board licenses electricians.

    Learn more about electrician programs.

  • Paralegal Schools

    Paralegals assist lawyers by conducting legal research, gathering evidence for cases, and writing reports to help lawyers prepare for trial. They may also take formal statements from clients, file legal documents with the court, and draft legal documents like contracts. Paralegals may specialize in different areas, like corporate law or litigation.

    Most paralegals complete a program in paralegal studies. During an associate degree in paralegal studies, students take courses on topics like legal research, contract law, legal writing, and corporate law.

    In 2019, the median annual salary for paralegals exceeded $51,000. The BLS reports much faster-than-average job growth for paralegals between 2018 and 2028. Paralegals do not need a license to practice.

    Learn more about paralegal programs.

  • Paramedic Schools

    Paramedics provide emergency care for sick or injured patients. They respond to 911 calls, conduct patient assessments, provide medical treatments, and transport patients to hospitals or other medical facilities.

    Paramedics typically hold a certificate or associate degree from a paramedic studies program. During their program, students take courses on topics like patient assessment, field equipment, and trauma emergency care. Programs also incorporate hands-on training in hospital or ambulance settings.

    BLS data reports that paramedics earned a median annual pay of over $35,000 in 2019, with faster-than-average projected job growth between 2018 and 2028. Paramedics typically hold professional certification from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians and a license from the state. In Colorado, the Department of Public Health & Environment licenses paramedics.

    Learn more about paramedic programs.

Financial Aid for Trade School Students

Trade school students typically pay less for their education than students at four-year universities. For example, public universities in Colorado charge over $9,500 per year in tuition and fees, on average, while private universities cost over $22,000 a year. In contrast, Colorado community colleges charge an average of $3,600 per year.

In addition to choosing an affordable program, trade school students can lower the cost of their education by applying for financial aid. To qualify for federal aid, students must submit the FAFSA every year. However, schools must hold accreditation in order for their students to qualify for federal financial aid. Prospective students can check with schools to find out if their students can receive federal aid.

Unlike loans, scholarships and grants do not require repayment, making them among the best forms of financial aid. The next section covers scholarship opportunities for trade school students in Colorado.

Scholarship for Trade School Students

Students attending trade schools in Colorado may qualify for scholarship opportunities offered by private foundations, professional organizations, and government agencies. The following list outlines several scholarship opportunities for trade school students in the state.

Daniels Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Colorado residents with a minimum 3.0 GPA can apply for this scholarship. Recipients can use the scholarship to earn a degree at any two-year accredited college in the United States.

Amount: Varies

Partner Colorado Foundation Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Colorado residents who attend school in the state can apply for this scholarship. Candidates must demonstrate financial need.

Amount: $1,000

NIADA Regional Scholarships

Who Can Apply: The National Independent Automobile Dealers Association offers regional scholarships for students who demonstrate achievements and leadership skills. Recipients can use the scholarship to attend any college.

Amount: $3,500

William J. Blair Scholarship Fund

Who Can Apply: This scholarship funds students from Fort Collins who demonstrate financial need. Recipients need a minimum 3.5 GPA and must attend a postsecondary college or vocational school.

Amount: $2,500

Family of Bradley Gendron Scholarship

Who Can Apply: Offered through Diabetes Scholars, this award funds students with Type I diabetes who attend accredited colleges or technical schools in Colorado. Applicants must submit recommendations.

Amount: $1,000

Additional Education and Career Resources

The Colorado Association for Career and Technical Education is an organization that supports those who provide CTE to students around the state. Members include career counselors, teachers, and administrators. This report from the University of Colorado Boulder provides an in-depth forecast of the state's industries. This agency is responsible for monitoring the state's economy, including job creation and the business climate in different regions of Colorado. In addition, OEDIT provides support to small businesses and entrepreneurs. This page on Colorado Department of Education provides an overview of career and technical education in the state, including specialty areas and definitions of relevant terms. Perkins Collaborative Resource Network of the U.S. Department of Education presents vocational school enrollment data based on different career clusters.

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