Top 10 Trade Schools in California 2023: Up-Skill Today

For many students, trade school is a wise investment because most of its professional courses provide a high paid job and room for advancement. These institutes offer hands-on instruction that can give students vital job-ready skills. However, the best trade schools in California offer a more organized and direct pathway to the careers students strive for.

Trade Schools in California

Also, California’s vocational schools cater to adults and provide a more individualized learning environment. Students may anticipate customized attention, extra encouragement, and enhanced teacher support. Moreover, the population of most trade schools is far fewer than that of regular colleges and universities.

Nevertheless, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projections, some trade jobs might grow up to 19% from 2020 to 2030. Thus, enrolling in a reliable trade school is a great way to leverage your professional career. If you are looking for one, check out this article to learn about the top 10 Californian trade schools.

Best Trade Schools in California

1. Cerritos College

Students from diverse backgrounds can enroll in any trade program at Cerritos College, situated in Norwalk, California. The institution offers multiple vocational trade programs for students who wish to enter the industry and obtain real-world experience immediately.

Students remain connected through the college to various institutional resources, including academic advice and career assistance. In addition, you can contact the financial assistance office for any query regarding scholarship eligibility. Awarded financial help is given to 80% of students admitted to the college.

Rigid core curriculums, knowledgeable teachers, and encouraging learning environments benefit every student who seeks admission into this trade school. You can take basic and specialized classes in your academic area while enrolled. Moreover, the institute’s experiential learning activities, like internships, allow students to deepen their learning.

2. Los Angeles College of Aesthetics

Cosmetology, aesthetics, massage therapy, barbering, nail technology, and teacher trainee are the 6 career options Los Angeles College of Aesthetics offers. However, applying to this institute requires a GED or high school diploma. Also, you must be 18 years old and have passed the Ability to Benefit exam if you do not have a high school diploma.

Students must finish 1,600 hours (48 weeks) in cosmetology, 25 weeks in aesthetics or teacher preparation, 24 weeks in massage therapy, 15 weeks in nail technology, and 57 weeks in barbering to graduate.

Also, you’ll have to pay $16,160 in tuition for the available programs. Typically, the program’s graduation rate is 87%, which is relatively higher.

Besides, Career Arts and Sciences National Accrediting Commission has accredited the institution.

3. Advanced Career Institute

Advanced Career Institute was founded in 1986. The Council on Occupational Education has granted the institute accreditation. It holds a Private Business and Trade School license from the State of California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education and has permission to offer Veteran training.

This school offers top-notch, short-term educational programs for students who want to get ready for entry-level jobs. Depending on the course, programs might last between 40 and 760 hours.

Depending on the training program, different admission criteria are required. However, candidates must be at least 18 years old and possess a high school diploma to be accepted into ACI and its Professional Truck Driver program.

A driving history free of recent offenses and 5 years without a criminal conviction are crucial requirements for aspiring pupils. As needed by federal and state agencies, candidates must also pass a physical examination approved by the Department of Transportation. There will even be a drug test conducted.

While enrolment, you’ll have to pay a $250 registration fee and a tuition cost between $1,250 and $13,250, depending on the chosen program.

4. Brownson Technical School

Brownson Technical School offers courses in heating, air conditioning, ventilation, refrigeration, and maintenance technologies in a vocational technician program. Requisites for admission include a high school diploma or a GED certificate.

However, students must have a grade point average of at least 70% and maintain a 90% attendance rate to graduate. Also, all financial responsibilities to the school must be met, and students must finish all tasks in 1.5 times the usual amount of time or less. Typically, 87% of students graduate from the institution every year.

It usually costs around $29,520 to enroll in the program. Besides, the trade school has received accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Career Schools and Colleges.

5. Southwestern College

Enrolling at Southwestern College is good if you want flexible hybrid study options. Situated in Chula Vista, California, the institution is dedicated to various vocational trade programs. These programs are a fantastic choice for students who wish to enter the industry and receive hands-on training immediately.

A motivating learning environment, whether physical or virtual, and knowledgeable instructors are advantageous to students. Throughout their study, participants can opt for basic and advanced curricula.

In addition to their regular coursework, students can participate in internships and externships to enhance their education and skills. Also, with the help of reliable academic advice and career services support, students gain in-depth knowledge from institutional resources throughout their courses.

Besides, Southwestern College offers financial aid to prospective students. So, apart from evaluating students’ eligibility for financial aid, the office of financial assistance may even link them with proper financing resources. Financial help is usually awarded to 80% of all new students.

6. Contractors State License School

The largest Californian school for professionals in the construction industry is Contractors State License School. It has over 25 campuses.

The institution offers its pupils the necessary training for California Contractors License Exam preparation. One-third of California license exam candidates avail of Contractors State License School’s services to study for their exam. 98% of CSLS students pass on their first attempt.

Each course offered at the trade school has a different set of costs. Additionally, the institute provides the John Baker Contractor Scholarship to eligible students, which is a monthly grant for a cost-free program.

7. De Anza College

De Anza College offers 59 associate degrees and 72 certificate programs for learners. The public university allows students to enroll in online and on-campus learning modes from its main campus in Cupertino, California. Furthermore, flexible course scheduling benefits students who are working.

The school’s profession-focused programs help students develop specialized skills for a particular career or industry. Besides, general education prerequisites for associate degrees enable students to develop a broad range of transferrable abilities. In contrast, candidates pursuing a certificate course finish a narrowly focused curriculum in their field of study than those taking general education classes.

Graduates with certificates are eligible for positions in their fields at the entry level. Individuals can seek employment or opt for a bachelor’s degree after receiving the associate degree. However, the tuition fee for undergraduates across the state is $1,395, and that for out-of-the-state students is $9,360.

8. Independent Training and Apprenticeship Program

Independent Training and Apprenticeship Program offers comprehensive trade programs to become electricians. This program equips electricians of all types through apprenticeships, classroom education, and practical on-the-job training. The Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training has accredited the institution.

To graduate, students must complete 720 hours of training and the California certification exam. A typical apprenticeship program in this trade school lasts 3 to 5 years and includes 160 hours of classroom training per year. So, you must fulfill these criteria for graduation.

However, students must hold a high school diploma or its equivalent for enrollment. 94% of students who seek admission to the school graduate. The program has a total cost of $21,990.

9. Blake Austin College

Blake Austin College provides various licensing programs to meet the needs of the medical, dental, and beauty and wellness sectors. Students who enroll in the school’s certificate programs receive a high-quality education. It enables them to begin working right after graduation and certification.

The Council on Occupational Education’s Commission has accredited Blake Austin College. With approval from the California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education, the college is also permitted to operate in the region.

However, candidates must possess a high school diploma or a GED certificate and an official ID for enrollment. $100 is required for registration. Depending on the program, tuition costs may range from $6,750 to $33,575.

10. Bakersfield College

Bakersfield College has 80 certificate programs and 68 associate programs for students. The public university offers online and on-campus enrollment opportunities from its Bakersfield campus in California. The school’s flexible schedules are advantageous to busy students since they make it simpler to work while enrolled in college.

A large portion of the certificate and associate degree programs at the school have an emphasis on industry-specific abilities that prepare graduates for the career path of their choice. General education courses that improve communication, writing, and other soft skills are also included in associate degrees. However, certificate applicants take classes only in their area of study than general education courses.

Graduates are ready for the workforce after acquiring a certificate from this trade school. However, graduates who have earned an associate degree can either look for jobs or apply as transfer students to bachelor’s programs. The average cost of undergraduate study at the college is $1,288 for the state’s residents and $7,700 for non-residents.

For occupations in high-demand fields like healthcare, law, technology, and others, trade school offers comprehensive work training to students.

Many trade and technical schools in California have cheaper tuition costs and expedited or self-paced programs. However, you must have a postsecondary education degree, such as a high school diploma or GED, to qualify for these courses.

Besides, California offers some of the highest average wages for trade professions, including hair stylists and medical assistants. So, if you want to pursue a trade career, enroll in any of the schools mentioned above. They provide quality education and hands-on experience, enabling you to explore various professions in multiple industries.

Trade Schools in California

The below list of trade schools are available in California.

  • American Career College – Los Angeles
  • Los Angeles Trade Technical College – Los Angeles
  • Los Angeles City College – Los Angeles
  • Associated Technical College-Los Angeles
  • Aveda Institute – Los Angeles
  • Los Angeles Valley College – Los Angeles
  • Los Angeles Pierce College – Los Angeles
  • Los Angeles Southwest College – Los Angeles
  • Concorde Career College – San Diego
  • San Diego Miramar College – San Diego
  • San Diego Mesa College – San Diego
  • Center for Employment Training – San Diego
  • San Diego City College – San Diego
  • San Diego State University – San Diego
  • Associated Barber College of San Diego – San Diego
  • San Diego Christian College – San Diego
  • The Salon Professional Academy – San Jose
  • San Jose City College – San Jose
  • Carrington College – San Jose
  • San Jose State University- San Jose
  • Center for Employment Training – San Jose
  • City College of San Francisco – San Francisco
  • San Francisco State University – San Francisco
  • San Francisco Institute of Esthetics & Cosmetology Inc -San Francisco
  • Fresno City College – Fresno
  • United Education Institute College- Fresno
  • California State University – Fresno – Fresno
  • Carrington College – Sacramento
  • Universal Technical Institute – Sacramento
  • United Education Institute College – Sacramento
  • Sacramento City College – Sacramento
  • California State University – Sacramento
  • Sacramento Ultrasound Institute – Sacramento
  • United Education Institute College- Bakersfield
  • Bakersfield College – Bakersfield
  • Milan Institute – Bakersfield
  • American Career College – Anaheim
  • United Education Institute College – Anaheim
  • North-West College – Anaheim
  • Platt College – Anaheim
  • InterCoast Colleges – Anaheim
  • Pima Medical Institute – Chula Vista
  • United Education Institute College – Chula Vista
  • United Education Institute College – Huntington Park
  • Modesto Junior College – Modesto
  • American Career College – Ontario
  • United Education Institute College-Ontario
  • Platt College – Ontario
  • United Education Institute College – Riverside
  • Riverside City College – Riverside
  • North-West College – Riverside
  • Riverside County Office of Education-School of Career Education – Riverside
  • Platt College – Riverside
  • Salon Success Academy – Riverside
  • InterCoast Colleges – Riverside
  • California State University – Long Beach – Long Beach
  • Long Beach City College – Long Beach
  • Universal Technical Institute – Long Beach
  • North-West College- Long Beach
  • Santa Ana College – Santa Ana
  • Santa Ana Beauty College – Santa Ana
  • Santa Ana Beauty Academy – Santa Ana
  • Carrington College – Stockton
  • United Education Institute College – Stockton
  • Irvine Valley College – Irvine
  • Concordia University – Irvine
  • Unitek College – Fremont
  • Fremont College – Fremont
  • Concorde Career College – San Bernardino
  • San Bernardino Valley College – San Bernardino
  • California State University – San Bernardino – San Bernardino
  • San Bernardino Beauty College – San Bernardino
  • Oxnard College – Oxnard
  • Center for Employment Training – Oxnard
  • Glendale Career College – Glendale
  • Glendale Community College – Glendale
  • North-West College – Glendale
  • Glendale Career College – Brightwood-Teachout – Glendale
  • Universal Technical Institute – Rancho Cucamonga
  • Santa Rosa Junior College – Santa Rosa
  • Center for Employment Training – Salinas
  • North-West College – Pomona
  • California State Polytechnic University – Pomona
  • Pomona Unified School District Adult and Career Education – Pomona
  • Pasadena City College – Pasadena
  • Milan Institute – Visalia
  • Advanced Career Institute – Visalia
  • San Joaquin Valley College-Visalia
  • Victor Valley College – Victorville
  • Berkeley City College – Berkeley
  • InterCoast Colleges – Fairfield
  • Downey Adult School – Downey
  • United Education Institute College – Gardena
  • United Education Institute College – West Covina
  • North-West College – West Covina
  • InterCoast Colleges – West Covina
  • Salon Success Academy – West Covina

California Trade Schools by City