Trade Schools and Colleges in California

Education

If you would like to start a rewarding career, get the skills employers demand by attending one of the many four-year colleges or trade schools in California. Programs at CA colleges typically range from one to five years in length, and some can be completed in as little as eight months. Culminating in a diploma, certificate, associate’s degree, bachelor’s degree or graduate degree, areas of study that students may pursue include dental and medical assisting, criminal justice, nursing, business administration, computer technology, and culinary arts, among others.

State Facts

California was originally claimed as part of the Spanish Empire until Mexico’s independence from Spain in 1821. In 1848, it was ceded to the US during the Mexican-American War, becoming the 31st state. If California were a country, it would be the 35th most populous in the world. It is home to eight of the nation’s 50 most populated cities, including Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose, San Francisco, Fresno, Sacramento, Long Beach, and Oakland. With an impressive Pacific coastline, the fertile Central Valley at its center, and the Mohave Dessert in the southeast, California has a diverse geography. The third largest state in the US, about 45% of California is covered by forestry, most notably the Redwood Forest in the northwest.

Economy

California has one of the largest economies across the globe, with agriculture among its major industries. The Golden State is the world’s fifth largest supplier of food in the world, leading in production of fruits, vegetables, wines, and nuts. Other notable areas of economic success in California exist in Hollywood and Burbank, which are major centers in the entertainment industry; the Silicon Valley, which remains a leader in the field of information technology; and across the state, from Yosemite National Park to Disneyland, where tourism is prevalent.

Top Organizations

According to Inc.com, the top grossing companies in California are Restoration Hardware, Blackhawk Network Holdings, Quinn Emanuel, Universal Services of America, Pacific Dental Services, and Westlake Financial Services. On Fortune’s list of the 100 Best Companies to Work For, there were 18 companies headquartered in California including Google, Cisco, Adobe, DreamWorks Animation, Nordstrom, Zappos.com, Salesforce.com, Scripps Health, Marriott International, Intel, American Fidelity Insurance, and the Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts, among others.

Employment

Overall

There are 18,617,300, 000 people in the California labor force. The unemployment rate in California is 9.1%, which is 1.6% greater than the national average.

California Employment in Thousands
Apr 13
Civilian Labor Force (1) 18,617,300
Civilian Employment 16,923,000
Civilian Unemployment 1,694,400
Civilian Unemployment Rate 9.1%
(U.S. Unemployment Rate) 7.5%

Source: State of California Employment Development Department

Industries

The industries with the highest employment in California include trade, transportation and utilities; the government; professional and business services; and educational and healthcare services. The state also has a strong goods producing industry, particularly in manufacturing, as well as a large leisure and hospitality industry, particularly in the sub-industry of accommodation and food services.

California Industry Employment in Thousands April 2013
Total Farm 372,400
Goods Producing 1,918,000
     Mining and Logging 31,000
     Construction 633,800
     Manufacturing 1,253,200
Service Providing 13,166,400
     Trade, Transportation & Utilities 2,789,800
     Information 444,300
     Financial Activities 784,600
       Finance & Insurance 526,600
       Real Estate & Rental & Leasing 258,000
     Professional & Business Services 2,319,400
       Professional, Scientific & Technical Services 1,132,300
       Management of Companies & Enterprises 216,200
       Administrative & Support & Waste Services 970,900
     Educational & Health Services 2,287,900
       Educational Services 344,100
       Health Care & Social Assistance 1,943,800
     Leisure & Hospitality 1,662,300
         Arts, Entertainment & Recreation 265,500
         Accommodation & Food Services 1,396,800
     Other Services 514,800
     Government 2,363,300
       Federal Government 247,200
       State Government 481,500
       Local Government 1,634,600

Source: State of California Employment Development Department

Occupation Types

In 2012, the highest paying occupation types in California were management; legal; architecture and engineering; computer and mathematical; and healthcare practitioner occupations. The occupation types with the most employees were office and administrative support; sales; food preparation; transportation; and education occupations.

2012 Employment and Salary in California By Occupational Groupings
Occupational Title May 2012 Employment Estimates Mean Annual Wage 25th Percentile Hourly Wage 50th Percentile (Median) Hourly Wage 75th Percentile Hourly Wage
Total all occupations 14303630 $52,978 $11.60 $18.86 $32.47
Office and Administrative Support Occupations 2403360 $38,728 $12.79 $17.31 $22.88
Sales and Related Occupations 1475050 $41,300 $9.66 $13.64 $22.40
Food Preparation and Serving-Related Occupations 1297190 $22,623 $8.81 $9.37 $11.51
Transportation and Material Moving Occupations 906690 $34,768 $10.16 $14.20 $20.54
Education, Training, and Library Occupations 895710 $58,821 $17.04 $25.90 $36.85
Management Occupations 808170 $123,431 $35.70 $52.23 $74.14
Business and Financial Operations Occupations 790660 $76,821 $25.09 $33.36 $44.50
Production Occupations 787240 $34,782 $10.49 $14.22 $20.47
Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations 721930 $89,821 $25.74 $38.55 $53.88
Computer and Mathematical Occupations 471890 $93,062 $31.94 $43.02 $56.31
Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Occupations 465740 $49,268 $15.95 $22.34 $30.13
Construction and Extraction Occupations 459670 $54,328 $17.19 $24.63 $33.71
Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance Occupations 452020 $28,347 $9.58 $11.74 $16.33
Healthcare Support Occupations 361930 $32,482 $11.44 $14.39 $18.39
Personal Care and Service Occupations 353930 $27,427 $9.24 $11.02 $14.37
Protective Service Occupations 348950 $53,650 $12.03 $21.76 $37.58
Architecture and Engineering Occupations 315670 $92,840 $31.63 $43.08 $55.89
Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Occupations 283510 $73,919 $17.74 $27.33 $42.20
Community and Social Services Occupations 218510 $51,596 $16.18 $22.64 $31.92
Farming, Fishing, and Forestry Occupations 197210 $20,799 $8.60 $9.04 $9.64
Life, Physical, and Social Science Occupations 171200 $77,473 $23.87 $34.88 $46.60
Legal Occupations 117390 $118,272 $30.13 $47.43 $75.70

Source: State of California Employment Development Department

Fastest Growing Careers

With home health aides holding the number one slot for fasting growing careers, 12 of the projected top 30 fastest growing occupations in California pertain to the healthcare industry. The second fastest growing career goes to market research analysts and marketing specialists, with an anticipated employment increase of 45.8% from 2010 to 2020. Due to California’s thriving trade and transportation industry, jobs for logisticians are expected to increase at a rate of 33.8% from 2010 to 2020. Also, notable are the IT positions of database administrators and systems software developers, which are expected to grow at a rate of 32.1% and 31.9% respectively. Although positions for food service mangers across the country are expected to show little change, employment for this role in California is projected to increase by 30.3% in the coming decade.

Fastest Growing Occupations in California from 2010-2020
Occupational Title Annual Average Employment in Thousands
Employment Change 2012 First Quarter   Wages
2010 2020 Percent Median Hourly Median Annual
Home Health Aides 61,100 93,100 52.4 $10.44 $21,712
Market Research Analysts and Marketing Specialists 53,700 78,300 45.8 $32.74 $68,104
Personal Care Aides 324,700 462,900 42.6 $10.34 $21,510
Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics 15,900 22,600 42.1 $15.19 $31,578
Medical Scientists, Except Epidemiologists 27,800 39,300 41.4 $40.12 $83,430
Marriage and Family Therapists 10,700 14,900 39.3 $22.27 $46,311
Diagnostic Medical Sonographers 5,300 7,300 37.7 $40.17 $83,540
Biochemists and Biophysicists 6,400 8,800 37.5 $39.19 $81,515
Logisticians 13,600 18,200 33.8 $37.92 $78,861
Tapers 6,000 8,000 33.3 $23.75 $49,410
Pharmacy Technicians 29,000 38,600 33.1 $18.41 $38,285
Cost Estimators 22,400 29,600 32.1 $32.25 $67,087
Database Administrators 11,200 14,800 32.1 $38.72 $80,523
Pharmacy Aides 8,100 10,700 32.1 $11.61 $24,158
Software Developers, Systems Software 75,500 99,600 31.9 $55.19 $114,795
Training and Development Specialists 18,800 24,800 31.9 $31.00 $64,471
Credit Analysts 6,000 7,900 31.7 $34.27 $71,275
Nonfarm Animal Caretakers 19,600 25,700 31.1 $10.13 $21,070
Healthcare Social Workers 12,600 16,500 31.0 $29.22 $60,777
Veterinary Technologists and Technicians 8,400 11,000 31.0 $16.77 $34,876
Loan Officers 28,300 37,000 30.7 $32.44 $67,494
First-Line Supervisors of Helpers, Laborers, and Material Movers, Hand 21,100 27,500 30.3 $22.07 $45,907
Food Service Managers 48,200 62,800 30.3 $23.59 $49,058
Personal Financial Advisors 30,100 39,100 29.9 $29.62 $61,610
Health Educators 7,700 10,000 29.9 $23.99 $49,891
Cooks, Fast Food 103,600 134,400 29.7 $9.00 $18,738
Physical Therapist Aides 6,400 8,300 29.7 $12.58 $26,165
Medical Secretaries 78,300 101,400 29.5 $16.58 $34,480
Interpreters and Translators 8,900 11,500 29.2 $21.88 $45,510
Pest Control Workers 9,000 11,600 28.9 $15.75 $32,773

Source: State of California Employment Development Department

Exploring Schools

Colleges in California can train you to work in skills-based careers, allowing you to dive straight into your coursework. Join the thriving economy of California armed with a degree or certificate in the field of your choice by exploring the trade schools and colleges featured below.

  • United States University is a private university located at 830 Bay Blvd in Chula Vista, California. It offers graduate and undergraduate degrees in health sciences, business, and nursing as well as California Teaching Credentials.