It is highly common for high school seniors to select a 4-year college program when they still have no idea what type of career will be right for them. In fact, one-third of college students change their major in the first three years of their program (NCES), and the average rate is 49% for post-secondary education (National Center for Education Statistics). These statistics are not too surprising when you consider the pressure that high school students experience to select their major at a 4-year college, with little attention paid to alternative options. The fact is that a Bachelor’s degree isn’t for everyone and shouldn’t be treated that way.

At Big Ideas, Inc., our mission is to introduce students – aged 13 to 113 – to skilled trades such as carpentry, welding, plumbing, electrical, mechatronics, masonry, HVAC/sheet metal, commercial cooking, commercial sewing, and more. We want to fill the gap for those students who feel that a bachelor’s degree is the only way for them to be successful after high school graduation.

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ROI of Trade School

There are a lot of college freshman who start courses in the Fall only to realize that the 4-year path isn’t right for them, and we want the Big Ideas community to be there to show them some alternative paths that will fit their personality and interests. We understand that this realization is scary, and these students might feel like they are letting someone down if they decide to dropout of the 4-year program, but a successful future is still in reach – and at a fraction of the cost.

Entrepreneur.com created an incredible infographic to show high school students the real return on pursuing one of three paths: trade/vocational school, 2-year college, 4-year college. See the infographic for “One Size Fits None” by clicking here.

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So, which path is right for you? If you think a trade might be your calling, we highly encourage you to take one of our skills courses to get some hands-on experience and to talk with the instructor about what life in their trade is all about.