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Best Vocational Careers to Pursue

Not everybody needs or is right for college, and that's where the best vocational careers come into play.

Vocational careers are perfect for those who are looking to do some actual work and have their mind fixed on a steady paycheck. These jobs are stable and most of them have steady growth rates, so you won't have to worry about finding a new job every few months like some shaky careers out there. 

Many of these worthwhile jobs don't require work experience or a Bachelor's Degree, and many can be obtained with some vocational training or specific certification programs. If school doesn't seem right for you, or you could never see yourself stuck in an office or chained to a desk, look into some of these best vocational careers today. 


Electrician is one of the more stable of the best vocational careers, as they are called into work wherever there is electricity—which is pretty much everywhere. They can work in construction, both residential and commercial, and their services will always be needed. 

Most people don't know the first thing about wiring and electric, so a good electrician can save you a boatload in the long run. Additionally, the national growth rate is over 14 percent, more than double the average.


Plumbing can be fickle, so a great plumber will always have a gig basically anywhere in the industrialized world. You can be hired by companies or individual people, and there are always plenty of opportunities to make money.

Being a plumber will take some vocational training, but once you take care of that you'll be pulling in a steady pay check as it's one of the best vocational careers. As your skills grow, you can basically set your own schedule and travel to as many jobs as you're up to. Another great sign is the growth rate is twelve percent, significantly more than most careers out there. 

Wind Energy Technician

Wind energy techs are going to become more and more in demand as we transition our energy sources to more Earth-friendly means. It works when a wind turbine converts kinetic energy from wind into power, and these turbines will need to be maintained. You'll help install them, do maintenance, and complete repairs as needed.

After completing a certification program, you'd be able to work outside and with your hands. Plus, if you're looking to get in on the ground floor this may be for you, as one of the best vocational careers has a 108 percent projected growth rate.


Basically, as a mason you will be laying brick, building the foundation for our modern society. Masonry is needed everywhere, from the building of homes to the construction of bridges. As a mason, you will need to be able to interpret blueprints, as it's a highly skilled trade despite its seeming simplicity. 

While working as a mason you can expect to work in a number of different places. Many work for construction companies, both big and small, and they are known to do a ton of residential construction. A good mason can make up to $70,000 a year, and with a 15 percent growth rate it doesn't look to be changing any time soon. 


Granted this isn't the sexiest job out there, but a good welder will always be in demand, and it's one of the best vocational careers if you're looking for a steady job—the growth rate is over 20 percent! As a welder, you'll join metals and thermoplastics via fusion. Welders use a variety of energy sources: gas flame, lasers, and even ultrasound. A competent welder can expect to find work in both the construction and manufacturing industries.


Cars are built to break, so becoming a auto mechanic will always be one of the best vocational careers. Repairing cars and trucks will always leave you with a steady pay check, and after gaining some technical experience through any number of certification programs, you can be good to go shortly after high school.

Cars are always advancing, so as long as you keep up with the trends, such as electronic and hybrid cars, you should be employed wherever you'd like for as long as you'd like. It doesn't have quite the growth rate of some of the other fields on this list, but a great, trustworthy mechanic will always have a job.

Home Inspector

Becoming a home inspector is one of the best vocational careers to get into, as they can work in a number of different situations. They can work in the real estate, construction, and insurance industries. You can also work as an independent contractor for specific clients, helping them determine the value or safety of their home.

They are used by banks  to determine the amount of mortgage loans, so a good home inspector can either save or cost you hard earned money. Home inspectors need to know all the various codes, and they will also be tasked with writing up detailed reports. 


A general contractor can make a ton of money, and a good one will average over $80,000 a year. Contractors play a huge role in all construction projects, whether they are federal, commercial, or residential. They work alongside the engineers and architects, and it's one of the best vocational careers you can get in terms of annual salary. 

A contractor has to collect all the necessary permits, work with the clients, and make sure the building is up to code. It takes a good planner, as a you'll need to keep track of the entire projects resources, and a bad move can cost big. 

HVAC Technician

HVAC techs deal with heating, ventilation, and air conditioning, all huge areas of need. Whether they are installing central heating or fixing a broken air conditioning in the dead of summer, a god HVAC tech will always be busy.

Most will work for a company and be sent out on jobs as need be, but it's also possible for you to start your own company, making it one of the best vocational careers. Solving problems is what the job is all about, and the growth rate is pretty impressive at 14 percent.


Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, you should consider becoming a nurse. There are many different avenues you can go down if you want to become a nurse, but one of the quickest is through a vocational training program. An approved nursing program can take less than two years to complete, and after that you can be expected to make a solid starting salary. 

If you like dealing with people and helping ailing patients, then this is one of the best vocational careers you could choose. People will always get sick and need help, and that is why the projected growth rate is over 15 percent through 2026. 

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