Have you ever felt overwhelmed by your own aspirations? Have you ever looked at your life and thought, “How can I possibly do any more?” Here at TradeSchoolCareers, we get it. Life is hectic. That’s why we’re here to help you find the most convenient options for jumpstarting your career and opening the doors to your future.
Receiving professional coaching in your field of interest is one of the best ways to expand your skillset and put yourself ahead of competitors in the job market. Career training through a trade school or a vocational coaching program is a surefire way to boost your character in the eyes of potential employers and clients because these kinds of programs give you more experience and provide you with an established market of familiar associates.
But what if you don’t have time to attend classes in person? You either don’t want to give up the job you already have, or you simply have no extra time in your everyday schedule—the solution: virtual trade schooling. Online career training courses are cheap, accessible, flexible, and, most importantly, convenient. These courses can be completed at your own pace and from the comfort of your own home. At the click of a button, you can secure your future!
Below, EdSmart has compiled a list of the best online trade schools to help you narrow down your options and get a headstart on your path to success.
TradeSchoolCareer rankings combine four key data points to score auto mechanic programs.
- Affordability (tuition)
- Student Success (graduation rate)
- Student Satisfaction (retention rate)
- Student Priority (student-to-faculty ratio)
The highest score that a school can receive is 100. If there is a tie in scoring, then the school or program with the lower of tuitions wins the higher ranking.
We believe that the four categories covered in this ranking are a good indication of a school’s ability to provide quality education at an affordable cost.
Without further adieu, here are this year’s best automotive colleges and trade schools.
26 Best Online Trade Schools 2020
Pinellas Technical College-St. Petersburg
Susquehanna County Career and Technology Center
North Dakota State College of Science
Northcentral Technical College
Washburn Institute of Technology
Ultimate Medical Academy
West Kentucky Community and Technical College
Forsyth Technical Community College
Northwest Technical College
Apollo Career Center (non-degree school)
Wentworth Institute of Technology
Central Georgia Technical College
Gateway Community and Technical College
Alexandria Technical & Community College
Wake Technical Community College
Francis Tuttle Technology Center
Minnesota West Community & Technical College
Guilford Technical Community College
Maysville Community and Technical College
Hazard Community & Technical College
Fayetteville Technical Community College
Madison Area Technical College
Northshore Technical Community College
Dakota College at Bottineau
Jefferson Community and Technical College
1. Pinellas Technical College-St. Petersburg
Graduation Rate: 60%
Retention Rate: 69%
Since its founding in 1927, the Pinellas Technical College of St. Petersburg has functioned in the sole interest of its students. Its central campus is located in St. Petersburg, Florida, but the school runs a variety of online courses that enable students to pursue vocational training from anywhere. Through this medium, courses meet the same standard of instructional excellence as on-site classes, and all online students are eligible for the same financial aid and transfer opportunities as traditional students. Online degrees are offered alongside 50% on-site training, and students can specialize in anything from cosmetology to surgical technology. These courses are both state-approved, and COE certified, catering to a wide range of students from all academic backgrounds. All in all, Pinellas Tech is one of the foremost institutions for career training in the state, ranking at #8 among best community colleges in Florida, according to Niche.com.
2. Susquehanna County Career and Technology Center
Graduation Rate: 94%
Retention Rate: 94%
The Susquehanna County Career and Technology Center’s central campus is located in Springville, Pennsylvania, but the institution manages to serve students from all across the country through its comprehensive virtual programs. Students participating in these programs have a wide variety of career training options and courses, which train them to become anything from a pharmacy technician to a dental assistant. The school’s online medical, technical training courses are available year-round, making them openly accessible to a wide range of students. Ultimately, the school’s mission is to provide students with the skills they need to be competitive in their chosen fields and find success in their careers.
3. North Dakota State College of Science
Graduation Rate: 49%
Retention Rate: 72%
The North Dakota State College of Science is one of the foremost institutions for career training in its state. It caters to students from all walks of life and even offers a variety of online courses for distance learners and working students. These programs provide comprehensive career training in fields relating to healthcare, business, informational technology, construction, hospitality, and even law. Some of the programs can be completed in as little as six months for just $695. For all of these programs, however, students can earn professional certifications that will enable them to compete in the job market and become highly competent experts in their respective fields.
4. Northcentral Technical College
Graduation Rate: 31%
Retention Rate: 63%
Northcentral Technical College is a collegiate-level training school with campuses in six different locations, including Wausau, Antigo, Medford, Phillips, Spencer, and Wittenberg, Wisconsin. As an institution, it is committed to serving both its local community and the global population. Northcentral offers a wide range of virtual career training courses, and students can earn technical diplomas in specialties such as human resource management, industrial manufacturing technology, and even software development. In as little as three terms, students can earn their technical diplomas and enter the job market with distinctive skillsets and real-world experience under their belts. For those seeking career training without the trouble of campus commuting, Northcentral is the perfect option.
5. Washburn Institute of Technology
Graduation Rate: 77%
Retention Rate: 66%
The Washburn Institute of Technology is one of the foremost technical training institutions in the state of Kansas. It operates in affiliation with Washburn University, and its central campus is located in Topeka, Kansas. The school also runs a virtual program that is widely accessible to students from across the country. Students who participate in these interactive programs are only required to commit to one hour of live-streamed career-training instruction per week. Courses range anywhere from manufacturing production to electrical technology and even word processing. These programs equip students with the skills they need to enter the job force as strong competitors and succeed in their chosen fields.
6. Ultimate Medical Academy
Graduation Rate: 64%
Retention Rate: 81%
The Ultimate Medical Academy is one of the top-ranking career-training schools in the state of Florida. Its central campus is located in Tampa, but the institution operates a variety of medically-related programs. This school is designed for those who aspire to build a career around helping others and administering service. The school’s specialized courses enable students to earn associate’s degrees and become medical administrative assistants, pharmacy technicians, medical billing and coding specialists, and many other types of medical professionals. The Ultimate Medical Academy is dedicated to training the next generation of medical experts, and its online programs equip students with the skills they need to become successful healers, technicians, and assistants.
7. Taft College
Graduation Rate: 37%
Retention Rate: 72%
Since its founding in 1922, Taft College has been committed to the furthering of career training for goal-oriented individuals in the greater Taft region, as well as the global community. That is why its virtual learning programs operate with the highest level of credibility, accessibility, and comprehensivity. Distance learners can access their virtual accounts and coursework through Canvas, the school’s online academic system. The courses are designed to fit easily around a busy schedule, and students can take them at their own pace. Instructors are also easily reachable through online messaging and email. All in all, Taft operates some of the best quality virtual training resources available in the country.
8. Forsyth Technical Community College
Graduation Rate: 19%
Retention Rate: 61%
Forsyth Technical Community College has dedicated itself to the advancement of student career training for over 50 years, and today, it continues to uphold a high standard of excellence for all its students. The school operates a variety of programs that equip students with vital skills in all fields. These programs include emergency responder skills training, technical and trade skills, law enforcement skills training, medical and health-related skills training, and many more. From these courses, students can begin college with highly marketable skills, enter the workforce in an entry-level position and work their way up the ladder, or pursue the career they love right off the bat. Ultimately, Forsyth Tech is the best option for individuals looking to jumpstart their futures and find success in a lifelong career.
9. West Kentucky Community and Technical College
Graduation Rate: 45%
Retention Rate: 67%
West Kentucky Community and Technical College is a leading career training institution located in Paducah, Kentucky. For students seeking professional, personalized instruction, this is the place for you. WKCTC offers more than 300 online classes, and virtual students have opportunities to master specializations like digital photography, desktop publishing, computer literacy, and many others. These courses provide students with valuable skills in their respective areas of interest, equipping them with work experience that will make them competitive in the job market and successful in the field. All in all, West Kentucky Community and Technical College provides high-quality courses to students around the globe, helping them to achieve their goals and pursue their dreams.
10. Northwest Technical College
Graduation Rate: 50%
Retention Rate: 64%
Northwest Technical College is a place for individuals looking to acquire skills that will up their employability on the job market. NTC makes this possible by running a variety of easily accessible online courses that cover all spheres of interest. They offer online degrees, diplomas, and certificates in the fields of business and entrepreneurship, health and human services, and science and technology. Students can choose which courses they take, and have the opportunities to become anything from an e-merging computer technician to a medical coder, or an administrative assistant to a welder. All in all, NTC is a top-of-the-line institution that enables students to pursue their passions and advance toward their lifelong goals.
11. Apollo Career Center (non-degree school)
Graduation Rate: 63%
Retention Rate: 59%
Since its founding in 1976, the Apollo Career Center has dedicated itself to the furthering of students’ career training and job marketability. The institution is also globally accessible, offering online courses in home inspection, professional job training, medical technology and transcription, world education, and even first-aid training. With the skills they gain from these courses, students will be able to pursue further education or join the workforce through an entry-level position, all while upholding their at-home responsibilities. Apollo has foundational partnerships with widely-known businesses and industries all across the U.S., and its students receive marketing opportunities with these corporations that provide them a foot in the door of their futures. All in all, the Apollo Career Center is the optimal place to gain professional skills and develop an outlook for a lifetime of success.
12. Wentworth Institute of Technology
Graduation Rate: 66%
Retention Rate: 83%
The Wentworth Institute of Technology is located in Boston, Massachusetts, and has been committed to the real-world instruction and career advancement of its students since its founding in 1904. Today, Wentworth’s opportunities are accessible to students across the world. The school’s virtual programs offer a wide range of master’s and bachelor’s degrees in technical fields like construction management and project management. These courses are uncompromising in terms of instructional quality, and they are conducive to a busy schedule, which is ideal for working adults. In as little as two years, students have the potential to complete graduate programs and enter the workforce with diverse and high-demand skillsets. Ultimately, Wentworth opens doors for its students that will benefit them on their paths to future success.
13. Central Georgia Technical College
Graduation Rate: 30%
Retention Rate: 55%
Central Georgia Technical College has provided career training to individuals throughout Georgia for over fifty years. Today, however, students from all across the globe have access to CGTC’s comprehensive programs through online training courses. Distance learners have access to tracks in accounting and finance, business, personal development, arts and language, and many other fields and specializations. The school uses ed2go, a top-of-the-line instructional online system of classes that enables students to achieve their career training goals from anywhere, anytime. This format is especially convenient for working adults and full-time employees. All in all, CGTC affords a plethora of opportunities to its students, helping them advance in their careers and pursue new ones.
14. Gateway Community and Technical College
Graduation Rate: 37%
Retention Rate: 62%
Gateway Community and Technical College has been committed to the advancement of student training and real-world applications since its founding in 2002. This school provides opportunities to pursue technical careers in fields like office technology administration, computer and information technologies, mining technology, and many more. The online programs even award associate’s degrees and professional certifications. Courses run on 5, 8, 10, and 12-week tracks, allowing students the flexibility they need as working adults and full-time employees. These courses are fully accredited, and the virtual credits are transferable. GCTC online is a conglomeration of training schools’ programs that Gateway students have access to, which helps students to find marketing opportunities and make vital professional connections that will aid them in their future career paths.
15. Alexandria Technical & Community College
Graduation Rate: 62%
Retention Rate: 68%
Alexandria Technical & Community College is one of the foremost institutions for career training and professional instruction in the state of Minnesota. The school offers virtual instruction in fields like accounting, business, medical administration, and many others. Students who participate in these online programs have the flexibility to transfer their credits to full-time universities and pursue additional training and higher-level degrees if they so choose. Some of these programs take as little as one semester to complete, which is especially convenient for working adults and full-time employees. All in all, Alexandria Technical & Community College is the place where students find their futures and gain the skills necessary to become professionals in their fields.
16. Wake Technical Community College
Graduation Rate: 18%
Retention Rate: 66%
Wake Technical Community College is the largest career training institution in North Caroline, serving over 74,000 working adult students in total. For employed individuals who require flexibility in their class schedule, or for distance learners, the WTCC’s online programs offer some of the most comprehensive, high-quality instruction of any career training school in the country. Students have a variety of online learning options, and courses range anywhere from cosmetology to medical office administration. Through these courses, students can earn professional certificates that are highly sought-after by employers in the job sphere. Ultimately, Wake Technical is committed to the advancement of its students’ career training, and its easily-accessible programs serve as the first step on the path to success.
17. Francis Tuttle Technology Center
Graduation Rate: 55%
Retention Rate: 36%
The Francis Tuttle Technology Center is a service and career training center that has been providing high-quality industrial instruction to the local community since its founding in 1979. Today, through its online programs, FTTC operates as a global initiative. Online courses offer flexibility and accessibility to distance learners and working students anywhere, and the curricula accommodate both adult and high school-level students. A few of the courses include cybersecurity and network defense, advanced manufacturing, medical office technology, and even welding. These courses are specifically designed for career-oriented individuals who are striving towards building and maintaining lifelong careers. Ultimately, Francis Tuttle Tech is the place to go to find lifelong professional stability and success.
18. Minnesota West Community & Technical College
Graduation Rate: 46%
Retention Rate: 63%
Minnesota West Community and Technical College is committed to the advancement of career training for students from all walks of life. That is why its online programs are formatted to accommodate adult learners’ busy schedules and provide them with every possible opportunity, even from a distance. A few of the courses focus in fields like biofuels technology, emergency medical technology, pharmacy technology, and many others. These courses meet the same standard of excellence as their on-campus parallels, and the same professors that teach in-class sessions also instruct the online courses. Ultimately, Minnesota West Community and Tech opens doors to those willing to put forth the effort to pursue their futures actively and carve their paths to success.
19. Guilford Technical Community College
Graduation Rate: 20%
Retention Rate: 53%
Since its founding in 1958, Guilford Technical Community College has been committed to the furthering of its students’ technical training and career preparedness. Today, the school operates an entirely virtual set of programs through which working adults and distance learners can find the vocational opportunities they seek. These programs specialize anywhere from business to office administration to information technology. The school offers additional workforce training, as well. With such a wide range of options, students are sure to find their ideal program and pursue professional certifications or even degrees in their respective fields of choice. All in all, GTCC is one of the foremost institutions for career training in the state of North Carolina, and those who choose to build their futures here are sure to succeed.
20. Maysville Community and Technical College
Graduation Rate: 42%
Retention Rate: 62%
Maysville Community and Technical College is the foremost career training institution in the state of Kentucky. The school operates online courses with maximum flexibility, making this the ideal format for working adults and distance learners. Through these courses, however, students have the opportunity to start on the path toward certificates and degrees. Virtual classes focus in areas like energy systems, law enforcement, accounting, geography, and much more. Students who fulfill these credits have the potential to advance toward professional certifications and degrees, and often go on to highly-advanced positions within their respective fields. Ultimately, MCTC is one of the best options for individuals looking to change their lives and jumpstart their careers.
21. Hazard Community & Technical College
Graduation Rate: 35%
Retention Rate: 53%
Hazard Community and Technical College has been serving the members of its local Kentucky community since its founding in 1968. Today, however, the school has transformed its programs into a global initiative with virtual career training programs. The virtual courses focus primarily in fields like computer and information technologies, human services, unmanned systems technology, and many more. Through HCTC’s online programs, students can even earn professional certifications in things like digital photography or business foundations. The easy accessibility and schedule flexibility of the online format is ideal for working adults, distance learners, and even high school students. Ultimately, Hazard provides a multiplicity of opportunities to its students, both local and remote, that contribute to their career goals and lifelong success.
22. Fayetteville Technical Community College
Graduation Rate: 20%
Retention Rate: 55%
Since its founding in 1961, Fayetteville Technical Community College has been committed to the furthering of career training and professional instruction of both the local and global community. The school operates a fully-online initiative that aims at reaching students from all walks of life, including working adults and distance learners. The virtual courses prepare students for potential careers in business, accounting, medical coding, leadership and management, and many more. Often, students who leave their FTCC online program with a degree or certificate go on to obtain prominent positions within their respective fields. All in all, Fayetteville is the optimal place for those with busy schedules looking to invest time and energy into the future, and it is the best place to build skills that will ensure you lifelong career success.
23. Madison Area Technical College
Graduation Rate: 23%
Retention Rate: 23%
Madison Area Technical College has been devoted to the advancement of individualized career training and instruction since its 1912 founding. Today, the school has expanded its horizons to reach the global sphere with its easily-accessible online programs and courses. For working adults with busy schedules and distance learners who don’t have the time to commute, these programs are the optimal means for obtaining professional certifications and degrees. The courses focus in a variety of fields, and with the qualifications they receive here, students have the potential to obtain future careers as administrative specialists, medical assistants, human resources professionals, and many others. Ultimately, the online programs at MATC are some of the best in the country, and graduates of these programs end up going far.
24. Northshore Technical Community College
Graduation Rate: 43%
Retention Rate: 48%
Since its founding in 1930, Northshore Technical Community College has been a foundational institution of career training and technical instruction to the members of its local Louisiana community. Today, with its comprehensive online programs, it aims to serve the global community. These courses cover anything from electrical technology to criminal justice or diesel-powered equipment technology to business office administration, and the online format is ideal for working adults and distance learners. From these courses, students gain vital skills that will benefit them as they enter the job market and perform with professionalism and mastery in their respective fields. All in all, NTCC graduates go on to build a lifetime of career success and stability.
25. Dakota College at Bottineau
Graduation Rate: 22%
Retention Rate: 54%
Dakota College at Bottineau is the foremost institution for career training and professional instruction in the state of North Dakota. The school’s globalizing career training initiative has resulted in the operation of over 100 virtual courses that students can access anywhere, anytime. This format is ideal for distance learners and working adults because of its easy accessibility and scheduling flexibility. Online courses focus in fields ranging from medical assistance to small business management or bookkeeping to paraprofessional education. These tracks are designed to make students into competitors on the job market and equip them with skills that will benefit them in their future careers. Ultimately, Dakota is the place for students from all walks of life to cultivate technical expertise and professional training and find personal and professional lifelong achievement.
26. Jefferson Community and Technical College
Graduation Rate: 17%
Retention Rate: 58%
Since its founding in 2005, Jefferson Community and Technical College has been serving the local community of Louisville, Kentucky. Today, it aims to establish a more globalized community of trainees and learners. That is why Jefferson Online is one of the very best options for working adults, full-time employees, and distance learners looking to further their career training and enhance their specialized skillsets. Jefferson’s eLearning courses run either by the term, adhering to a semester schedule, or on-demand, running week-to-week or module-to-module. These courses are formatted to accommodate busy schedules. All in all, when it comes to online professional career training, JCTC is the place to go.
Are online trade schools worth it?
Online career training courses are cheap, accessible, flexible, and, most importantly, convenient. These courses can be completed at your own pace and from the comfort of your own home. At the click of a button, you can secure your future!