For anyone who is uninterested in a four-year degree, but wants to enhance their skillset, trade school may be the perfect option for you.

Some common reasons trade school is a better fit for you:

  • Bachelor’s Degree programs seem to offer unessential knowledge
  • You want to learn practical skills to earn more money
  • Bachelor’s Degree programs take too much time to complete and you have a busy schedule
  • You are only able to spend only up to two years in school because of other responsibilities
  • Bachelor’s Degree programs lead to jobs you can’t imagine yourself pursuing
  • You want to pursue a career in the skilled trades

Trade schools offer vocational training that can lead to a successful career in less than half the time it takes to complete a bachelor’s degree. At one of these institutions, you can learn a new skill or craft and get hired for it all within a few months to two years.

New Jersey has some of the best trade schools with all kinds of programs to choose from. Whether you are interested in carpentry or healthcare, or anything that may fall in between, there is a New Jersey school that’s right for you.

1. Lincoln Tech College

  • Lincoln Tech has six different campuses spread across New Jersey. The college offers courses for the industries in the highest demand like IT or Healthcare.
  • Career paths (and their NJ campuses) include:
    • Computer & Network Support Technician – Iselin, Moorestown and Paramus
    • Medical Assistant – Iselin, Moorestown and Paramus
    • Medical Coding and Billing – Paramus
    • Patient Care Technician – Moorestown, Paramus
    • Practical Nursing – Iselin, Moorestown, Paramus
    • Automotive Technology – Union, Mahwah
    • Electrical and Electronic Systems Technology – Union, Mahwah
    • Automotive Mechanics – Union
    • Air Conditioning, Refrigeration & Heating Technology – Union, Mahwah
    • Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Machining and Manufacturing Technology – Mahwah
    • Diesel and Truck Technology – South Plainfield
    • Heavy Equipment and Truck Technology – South Plainfield
    • Welding and Metal Fabrication Technology – South Plainfield
  • Costs
    • Depend on which program you choose.
    • Varies from $13,800 to $39,232
  • Website

2. Eastwick College

  • Eastwick College works in conjunction with the HoHoKus School of Trade and Technical Sciences. They have campuses in Nutley, Hackensack, Ramsey, and Paterson and offer a wide range of career training programs.
  • Career paths include:
    • Bilingual Licensed Practical Nursing
    • Business Operations and Accounting
    • Electrician Apprenticeship
    • Electronics and Computer Technology
    • Facilities Management
    • HVACR
    • Licensed Practical Nursing
    • Manufacturing Technology
    • Medical Assisting
    • Medical Billing and Coding
    • Plumber Apprenticeship
    • Welding
  • Costs
    • Depends on which program you choose and how long it takes you to complete.
    • Varies from $12,165 to $39,231
  • Website

3. American Institute

  • American Institute began by offering career training programs in business, but now also offers several programs in legal, allied health, diagnostic medical sonography, and IT. There are campuses in Clifton, Somerset, and Toms River, NJ.
  • Career paths include:
    • Administrative Office Professional
    • Dental Assisting
    • Diagnostic Medical Sonography
    • ESL – English as a Second Language
    • Massage Therapy
    • Medical Assisting
    • Medical Coding and Billing
    • Nurse’s Aide – FastTrack
  • Costs
    • Tuition fees are comparable to the other NJ Trade schools. They vary from $12,995 and $32,995.

4. New Educare Institute of Healthcare

  • New Educare is a healthcare centered institution offering courses mainly in various different healthcare programs. The programs are designed to help students earn careers in allied health professions. The campus is located in Newark.
  • Career paths include:
    • Patient Care Technician
    • Clinical Medical Assistant
    • Phlebotomy Technician
    • EKG Technician
    • EKG and Phlebotomy Technician
    • Pharmacy Technician
    • Surgical Technician
    • Surgical Instrument Technician
    • Dental Assistant
    • Administrative Medical Assistant
    • Medical Billing and Coding
    • Restorative Care or Aide
    • Rehabilitation Therapy Technician
  • Costs
    • Varies depending entirely on program of choice.
  • Website
    • For more information, visit:

5. Jolie Health and Beauty Academy

  • Jolie Health and Beauty Academy is designed for students interested in cosmetology and other related professions. They offer hands on training programs for students aspiring to make it in the beauty industry. Campuses are located in Cherry Hill, Northfield, and Turnersville, NJ.
  • Career paths include:
    • Barbering
    • Cosmetology
    • Esthetics/Aesthetics
    • Skin Care Esthetics
  • Costs
    • Tuition for these programs varies between $7,861 and $18,455.
  • Website
    • For more information, visit:

Paying for Trade School

There are a few ways that you can pay for trade school. You can either pay in cash by saving up and charging the amount due for your tuition every semester. This is the most straightforward, but also the most immediately expensive.

You can enroll in a payment plan that splits up your tuition costs throughout the months of each semester you enroll in. This makes sense if you are working and are earning a steady income, but would rather not pay in full.

Other options include filing for financial aid. Contrary to popular belief, trade school students are eligible for financial aid through FAFSA! It is not limited to Bachelor’s degree or post-graduate degree programs. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) will show you if you are qualified for financial aid or not. If not, you can see which student loans you may qualify for to cover the costs of your term bills.

You can also apply for scholarships, grants, and other financial awards to help fund your technical education.

Time to Apply!

Hopefully, this list helped you create an idea of where you want to take your career with trade school. These are the best five trade schools in New Jersey, and programs that they offer, so that you can understand your options when it comes to trade school. Depending on what you like and the career you want, these schools and programs can help bring your dreams to reality!