This list of trade school certificate and license programs actually includes those ranging from about 6 weeks to 1 year. These following career programs don’t take a lot of time or money to complete and a few of them can even be taken online. The jobs these programs lead to have good salaries and that information is listed below.
The salaries are the average listed on the official BLS website. Keep in mind, entry level pay is less, but as you gain experience, your paycheck will increase to match. In some areas the jobs listed, like truck driver and HVAC technician are moving very fast and have been paying more than this list would indicate.
Truck Driver (3-6 weeks)
Commercial driver’s license (CDL) training programs are fast! They take 3-6 weeks to complete; average pay: $42,480. and there is a major trucker shortage right now. Read: What does a truck driver do?
Diesel Mechanic (6 months-1 yr)
Diesel mechanic training programs take 6 months to 1 year to finish, but some schools do offer 2 year associate’s degree programs; average pay: $46,360, Read: What does a diesel mechanic do? for more.
Medical Assistant (6-8 weeks)
Certified medical assistant programs can take as little 6-8 weeks to complete. This is another career where you can stay in school longer, up to an associate’s degree; average pay: $32,480. Find a medical assistant school near you.
Dental Assistant (9 months-1 yr)
Dental Assistant programs take 9 months to 1 year for certification training; average pay: $37,360 (popular online course). There are online dental assistant programs available in most states. Read: What does a dental assistant do? for more.
Emergency Medical Technician (1-3 months)
Emergency Medical Tech training takes 1-3 months; average pay: $33,380. EMT is a career that requires hands on training but hybrid classroom-online courses may be available in some locations. Read: What does an EMT do?
Home Health Aide (3 months)
Home Health Aide courses are fast generally taking only 3 months; average pay: $23,210. Read: What does a home health aide do?
Medical Coder (8 weeks)
Medical coding programs take about 8 weeks to complete and it’s a popular online course that you can complete at your own pace; average pay: $39,180.
Certified Nursing Assistant (6 months-12 weeks)
Certified Nursing Assistant college courses take 6-12 weeks to complete, this is also a popular online course; average pay: $27,520.
HVAC Technician (6 months-1 yr)
Phlebotomist (1 year)
Phlebotomy Technician training takes 1 year or less of college classes; average pay: $33,670. Phlebotomist is also career that requires some hands on training but hybrid classroom-online courses may be available. Find a phlebotomy school near you.
Plumber (1 year + apprenticeship)
Plumbing trade school programs take about 1 year of school, then you start your apprenticeship; average pay: $52,590. Read: Becoming a plumber
The career programs above are not always the highest paying trade school careers, just some relatively quick ones.
The program times listed are estimates based on hours of credit needed or other references from our partner trade schools and technical colleges. I will probably add to this list so check back periodically.
last edit: 2/24/19