Trade School Grants for Students

trade school school grantsTrade schools are also called Vo-tech or vocational technical schools. Despite the common misconception, they do not provide a cheaper option to four year institutes or colleges.

Sometimes trade or technical schools offer the shortest route to a formal education; a fast track in reaching your career goal or destination.

Students who attend these schools still need financial support and trade school grants to help them pay for it.

Nearly 10,000 private vocational institutes are present in the nation.

The admission requirements for the institutes vary drastically, and semester/quarterly tuition fees ranges from $500-$10,000 or even more based on the course nature and its length.

Trade /Technical School Certificates:

The most common certificates offered by trade schools are called as diplomas or associate degrees, although you can receive qualification credits in order to become a licensed professional in your field.

Most of the trade schools offer two year course programs or one year certification programs, and sometimes even a six to nine months technical program.

Trade School Careers

Students who attend the trade school often go to become electricians, mechanics, lab technicians, nursing, carpenters, chefs or cooks, cosmetologists, construction workers or court reporters.

They are also eligible to become interior decorators, fashion designers, game technicians, graphic designers, accountants, game designers, writers and secretaries.

The common funding sources for the trade schools generally include private scholarship programs, trade and professional organization and federal financial aid.

Private Scholarship Funds For Trade/Technical/Vocational Schools:

Various private scholarship fund programs are available to students enrolling in vocational/technical schools.

Most of these are not specific to vocational or trade schools only, but are available to all students seeking to further their education at any accredited institution.

To see what grants and scholarships you are available, visit our Grants By State page and navigate down to your state.

Trade or Professional Organizations:

Students who are interested in pursuing specific trades are eligible to receive grants or scholarships from the organizations dedicated to trade.

For example, the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractor Educational Foundation awards two $2,500 scholarship every year to certain students who are enrolled in a related two year trade program at an accredited community college.

As another example, California students interested in pursuing a career in the automotive service field may be eligible for a grant or scholarship from the Automotive Service Council of California. From the official web site

“The scholarship program is open to high school seniors who plan to enroll in post-high school technical/academic training or college undergraduates in the automotive service field satisfying certain criteria. Currently the Foundation issues eleven annual scholarships that can range from $500 to $1000 and can be applied toward tuition, tools and books.”

If you are interested, a scholarship application form can be obtained here!

There are literally hundreds of such grants and scholarships across the country. The best way to research them is to search out local, regional or state organizations dedicated to your trade (use Bing, Google, or your local yellow pages) and inquire whether or not they offer any grant or scholarships opportunities for students.

Federal Aid:

Students who are planning to attend properly accredited trade schools are eligible for same federal financial support as students planning to enroll any of the other post secondary institutions like university or colleges.

To apply to receive federal financial aid, students must complete and submit Free Application for Federal Student Aid (or FAFSA).

Complete details on where to find the form and what to expect from it can be found here!

Submitting the FAFSA serves an additional purpose; the data on this form is also used by state authorities to determine whether or not you are also eligible for regional grants. Of course, you won’t be applying for ALL available federal and state grants by submitting this application, which means you still need to visit our state grants page to see what else is available to you.

Based on personal circumstances and financial needs, students are considered for one or more federal grants (like the Academic Competitiveness grant, Federal Pell grant, Iraq and Afghanistan Service grant, Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education grant, the National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent grant and Federal Supplement Educational Opportunity grant) as well as relevant state grants.

No matter what technical or vocational career you are considering, the absolute most important first step in obtaining funding is filling out and submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.