Why the Trades?
With so much attention brought to the business and management industries during Canadaʼs rekindling economic climate, many core fields of work are being overlooked by the students; one of these being the trades.
The skilled trades are a growing field of work that is in constant need of well-trained workers.
What exactly is a skilled trade? It can be defined as an expertness of a specific skill, usually attained through years of training and commonly related to construction and repair. The skills that are considered “trades skills” range broadly from carpenter, electrician, automotive technician, plumber, pipe fitter, welder and much more.
There is a common misconception that the trades are considered “blue collar” jobs done through informal training. In reality there are a plentitude of academic institutions that provide education and preparation in the trades.
Although it is common to get into the trades through practical training, it doesnʼt mean you will be making less money than someone who attended university. Tradespeople are some of the highest paid employees in Canada. Not only is a customer paying for your knowledge about a trade, but they are also paying for expert performance.
If you enjoy learning new lessons everyday and arenʼt afraid to be challenged, a career in the trades might suit you. Trades jobs are considered demanding and will put your mind and body to the test daily. If you enjoy a hands-on work environment, and are interested in how things work, this field may be what you want to look at.
There is an increasing shortage in the skilled trades. According to careersintrades.ca, 67% of young adults choose university over a college education in the trades because it was encouraged more by friends and family. There were also instances in which a lack of information about the trades swayed students away from the sector.
So, what exactly are the steps to take to become tradespeople? The most efficient and reputable manner to becoming certified in the trades is an apprenticeship. This way, you are getting one-on-one experience with a master in the trade who can help you further your knowledge and skills. Many college programs that deal with the trades have their own apprenticeship training programs. So go and check out your local college to see what they offer, or look on Jobs People Do to see what colleges offer certain apprenticeships.
The best thing to do in your early years of education is to look at high schools that provide introductory training of a trades skill you are interested in. Julian Finbow Westlane graduate, claims that:
“Taking the refrigeration course at such a young age was extremely beneficial for the jobs I am interested in.”
Julian is looking to develop his trade skills in refrigeration, and is planning on either taking a apprenticeship or going to college.
Become involved and research trade skills you think will peak your interest. It may be beneficial to shaping your career path! So put on that thinking cap (or hardhat for this situation) and immerse yourself in the trades.