Start Your Future at North Carolina's Technical and Trade Schools
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North Carolina Technical and Trade Schools

North Carolina is a state on the rise. With the fastest growing population east of the Mississippi, and a vibrant high tech economy, there are many great career opportunities available if you to attend one of the North Carolina technical schools.

The U.S. Census Bureau lists North Carolina's population as 9,380,884. This makes "The Tar Heel State" the 10th most populous state in the country. Between 2000 and 2009 the state's population growth rate of 16.6 percent outpaced the overall U.S. population growth rate of 9.1 percent.

North Carolina's economy is one of the strongest in the United States. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, North Carolina's gross domestic product in 2008 was worth $400.2 billion. This makes the state the 9th wealthiest in the U.S. in terms of GDP.

The state's economy is largely focused on knowledge-based enterprises including business and financial services, engineering, communications, and biotechnology. The state is a center for academic and corporate research and development programs. North Carolina also has significant agricultural, manufacturing, and tourism industries. As a graduate of one of the North Carolina technical schools you could potentially find employment in any of those fields.

North Carolina's unemployment rate of 9.7 percent is slightly below the U.S. unemployment rate of 9.8 percent, according to November 2010 figures from the Bureau of Economic Analysis. The median household income in North Carolina in 2009 was $45,069, according to the U.S. Census.

Careers in North Carolina

The state's growing economy provides many opportunities to graduates of trade and technical schools in North Carolina. The industries with the highest career growth include:

  • Information Technology
  • Professional, Business, and Financial Services
  • Education and Health Services
  • Biotechnology
  • Manufacturing

Where the Jobs Are for Graduates of North Carolina Technical Schools

The largest proportion of North Carolina residents live in the central Piedmont plateau region. The Piedmont region is also home to the majority of the state's industry, agriculture, and educational institutions. The other two main geographic regions in North Carolina are the coastal plains to the east and the Appalachian Mountains to the west.

There are three main metropolitan areas in North Carolina with each area offering its own unique employment opportunities.

The Metrolina. This region includes Charlotte, the largest city in North Carolina. Over 709,400 people live in the city itself and over 1,745,500 live in the greater Charlotte metropolitan area. Charlotte is the second largest financial services center in the U.S., after New York. The financial and business services industry jobs in the region bring the median household income in the Charlotte area up to $52,364, according to 2009 U.S. Census figures.

The Triangle. This eight county region includes the cities of Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill. The region is named for the Research Triangle Park, the largest research park in the U.S. The park's emphasis on high-tech R&D has made this region the leader for high-tech, scientific, and academic jobs. The 170 firms in the park employ an estimated 42,000 full-time knowledge workers and an additional 10,000 contract employees. There are over a dozen colleges and universities in this region as well. November 2010 figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show the unemployment rate for the Durham-Chapel Hill region at 7.1 percent. The median household income for Raleigh city was $53,370 in 2009, according to the U.S. Census.

The Piedmont Triad. This region is made up of the areas around Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High Point. Over 1,603,000 people live in this region. Although the Triad has historically been one of the primary manufacturing and transportation hubs in the south, the region's economy is increasingly converting to knowledge-based industries as the overall manufacturing base declines. There are over 20 colleges and universities in the Triad region. Greensboro is the largest city in the region with a population of 245,776, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Census figures also show that Greensboro has a median household income of $41,050 and an unemployment rate of 8 percent.

Leading Careers in North Carolina

Some of the leading careers for graduates of North Carolina technical schools with their mean annual wages include:

  • Computer Programmers, $75,990
  • Computer Software Engineers, Applications, $87,380
  • Database Administrators, $76,590
  • Diagnostic Medical Sonographers, $60,000
  • Radiologic Technologists and Technicians, $52,650

All About Attending North Carolina Technical Schools

The majority of the technical schools in North Carolina are in the Piedmont region. Many are clustered near the state's high-research and development hubs. These high-tech fields are in constant need of graduates from North Carolina technical schools.

The programs at the technical, vocational, and trade schools in North Carolina include both on-campus and distance learning options. The exact curriculum and program length varies according the subject and program. Although some programs can be completed in under a year, most programs require at least a year of course work and on-site training. Associate degree programs typically require two years and four year degree programs are also available.

By attending a trade or technical school in North Carolina you can improve both your employment prospects and your pay. Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows that the unemployment rate for those with a certificate drops to 8.6 percent. The unemployment rate drops to 6.8 percent for graduates of associate degree programs. The data also shows that the more education you complete, the more money you could potentially earn in your career.