Trade Schools in Colorado

LearnHowToBecome Team
Erin Gobler
November 9, 2021

LearnHowToBecome.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Are you considering attending a trade school in Colorado? You may be surprised to learn that trade school can be a lucrative alternative to a traditional four-year education. Colorado students who attend trade school graduate in less time, often with little to no student loan debt.

Trade jobs in Colorado often have high salaries and leave plenty of room for growth with ongoing training. Keep reading to learn more about trade schools in Colorado and find some of the best programs.

Trade School and Trade Jobs in Colorado

Here are a few facts to know about trade school and trade jobs in Colorado:

FAQs About Continuing Education in Colorado

How much does trade school cost in Colorado?

Trade schools in the U.S. cost $33,000 on average, but the trade schools on our list below average just over $13,000.

How many trade schools are there in Colorado?

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, there are more than 70 technical and vocational schools in Colorado.

Trade Job Outlook in Colorado

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual wage for a job that requires a postsecondary nondegree education is $53,295. That said, jobs without a degree can have salaries that exceed $90,000, so don't feel limited by this average.

So how does this compare with other levels of education?

Trade School Average Salary
$53,295
Bachelor's Degree Average Salary
$86,663
Master's Degree Average Salary
$82,498

Average Cost of Trade Programs in Colorado

One of the major benefits of attending trade school is its affordability. The national average cost of trade school is $33,000. Bachelor's degrees cost up to $150,000 on average, according to CollegeBoard. However, the trade schools on our list below average $13,901 in net price.

You'll pay over 10 times more for a bachelor's degree, but only make $30,000 more each year. This means your trade school education will pay off a lot quicker than if you were to earn a bachelor's degree.

Trade Accreditations in Colorado

While there are many trade schools to choose from in Colorado, it's essential that you choose one that is either regionally or nationally accredited. When a program is accredited, it's been verified to provide a quality education that meets certain standards.

Additionally, graduation from an accredited program is often required for federal financial aid or eligibility to sit for licensing exams in some trades.

Trade schools are often accredited by national organizations that include:

But just because the trade school you've chosen is accredited doesn't mean the program is industry-recognized. Ensure the program you're attending is accredited by an industry-standard organization to get the most out of it.

Accreditation isn't the only factor to consider. Colorado requires that postsecondary schools be licensed in the state to educate students. Colorado's Department of Higher Education maintains a list of licensed schools in the state, including trade schools, so be sure the school you choose falls on this list.

Financial Aid for Trade School in Colorado

While trade schools are already more affordable than four-year alternatives, you can save even more money by applying for one of the many scholarships available to trade school students.

William J. Blair Scholarship Fund

CollegeInvest 529 Scholarship

Denver Scholarship Fund

Mildred Sorensen National Scholarship

For more information on paying for trade school, visit our guide on Vocational Education Financial Aid.

Colorado Trade Schools and Colleges

Colorado is home to plenty of technical and vocational schools for you to choose from. However, the 20 below meet the following qualifications:

Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts-Boulder Boulder

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $8,839
Graduation rate: 52%
Largest program: Culinary Arts

Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts in Boulder offers the following programs:

  • Culinary Arts
  • Baking & Pastry
  • Pastry Arts
  • Plant-Based Cuisine
Avalon School of Cosmetology-Aurora Aurora

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $16,314
Graduation rate: 60%
Largest program: Cosmetology

Avalon School of Cosmetology-Aurora has the following programs and courses:

  • Cosmetology
  • Master Esthetics
  • Student Instructor
  • Makeup Artistry
  • ADV Hair Extensions
Aveda Institute-Denver Denver

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $19,257
Graduation rate: 98%
Largest program: Cosmetology

Aveda Institute in Denver offers these programs:

  • Cosmetology
  • Esthiology
  • Barbering
  • Massage Therapy
  • Hairstyling
  • Educator
Cheeks Beauty Academy Loveland

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $9,550
Graduation rate: 73%
Largest program: Cosmetology

Cheeks Beauty Academy offers programs in:

  • Cosmetology
  • Hairstyling
  • Esthetics
Elevate Salon Institute-Westminster Westminster

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $12,288
Graduation rate: 60%
Largest program: Cosmetology

Elevate Salon Institute in Westminster offers the following programs:

  • Cosmetology
  • Esthetician
  • Nail Technician
  • Hairstyling
  • Barbering
Emily Griffith Technical College Denver

School type: Public
Net price: $7,653
Graduation rate: 88%
Largest program: Cosmetology

Emily Griffith Technical College offers 45 programs in areas including:

Empire Beauty School-Littleton Littleton

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $16,673
Graduation rate: 61%
Largest program: Cosmetology

Empire Beauty School in Littleton offers a Cosmetology program.

Intellitec College-Grand Junction Grand Junction

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $19,144
Graduation rate: 65%
Largest program: Medical Assistant

Intellitec College in Grand Junction has the following programs:

International Salon and Spa Academy Colorado Springs

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $17,737
Graduation rate: 79%
Largest program: Cosmetology

International Salon and Spa Academy offers the following programs:

  • Cosmetology
  • Nail Technician
  • Barbering
  • Esthetics
Lincoln College of Technology-Denver Denver

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $20,072
Graduation rate: 59%
Largest program: Welding

Lincoln College of Technology in Denver offers the following programs:

National Beauty College Denver

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $11,081
Graduation rate: 99%
Largest program: Nail Technician

National Beauty College in Denver offers courses in:

  • Hairstyling
  • Cosmetology
  • Esthetics
  • Manicuring
Pickens Technical College Aurora

School type: Public
Net price: $9,772
Graduation rate: 65%

Pickens Technical College offers 30 programs including:

  • Automotive Technology
  • HVAC-R
  • Welding
  • Cosmetology
  • Culinary Arts
  • Respiratory Therapy
Pima Medical Institute-Denver Denver

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $17,882
Graduation rate: 80%
Largest program: Medical Assistant

Pima Medical Institute offers courses ranging from certificate programs to master's degree programs. Some certificate programs include:

  • Dental Assistant
  • Medical Assistant
  • Medical Billing and Coding
  • Pharmacy Technician
  • Phlebotomy Technician
  • Veterinary Assistant
Stacey James Institute Parker

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $16,784
Graduation rate: 85%
Largest program: Cosmetology

Stacey James Institute offers programs in cosmetology and esthetics.

Technical College of the Rockies Delta

School type: Public
Net price: $19,953
Graduation rate: 89%
Largest program: Licensed Practical Nursing

Technical College of the Rockies offers 18 programs, including:

  • Emergency Medical Technician
  • Practical Nursing
  • Advanced EMT
  • Law Enforcement Academy
  • Maintenance and Light Repair
The Salon Professional Academy-Colorado Springs Colorado Spring

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $4,081
Graduation rate: 86%
Largest program: Cosmetology

The Salon Professional Academy in Colorado Springs offers programs in:

  • Cosmetology
  • Barbering
  • Esthetics
  • Nail Technology
  • Chemical Peel
  • Microdermabrasion
The Salon Professional Academy-Grand Junction Grand Junction

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $14,974
Graduation rate: 71%
Largest program: Cosmetology

The Salon Professional Academy in Grand Junction's largest program is cosmetology.

Toni & Guy Hairdressing Academy-Colorado Springs Colorado Springs

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $16,104
Graduation rate: 95%
Largest program: Cosmetology

Toni & Guy Hairdressing Academy in Colorado Springs has a 95% graduation rate.

Trinidad State Junior College Trinidad

School type: Public
Net price: $11,200
Graduation rate: 56%

Trinidad State Junior College offers tons of programs ranging from early childhood education to automotive technology.

United Beauty College Denver

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $8,666
Graduation rate: 100%
Largest program: Nail Technology

United Beauty College in Denver boasts a 100% acceptance rate.

Become Team
Erin Gobler
Contributing Writer

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