10 Best Trade Schools inSeattle, WA

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If you want to start a rewarding career without spending four years in college education, vocational training can be a sound option.

Classes that promise to get you ready for employment in less than a year are available at many trade schools or community colleges.

These programs prepare students for a variety of industries, from the automotive to the beauty industry.

This page is designed to help those who want to study in Seattle choose the program that best meets their needs and professional aspirations.

1Maritime Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies

About the School

Maritime Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies are leaders in maritime training and simulation.

The school offers a variety of courses, including 28-month apprenticeship programs.

Apprenticeships combine 26 weeks of classroom training and 360 days of training at sea.

Some apprentices may finish the program in only 24 months.

Every shore-based class included in this program is reinforced by simulation and onboard maritime training.

The program prepares students for careers as deck officers.

The MITAGS MAP Deck program is approved by the United States Coast Guard, the State of Washington’s Workforce Training, Education and Coordinating Board, and by the Maryland Higher Education Commission.

Classroom hours are between 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Some classes meet on Saturdays.

The apprenticeship program usually starts in the Spring or Fall, although schedules vary.

Courses Offered

Maritime Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies is offering the following programs:

  • AB to Mate Program
  • Mate to Master Program
  • Maritime Apprenticeship Programs:
    • 500-1600 GRT
    • Third Mate Unlimited
    • Engineering Apprenticeship Program
    • Washington State Ferry Maritime Apprenticeship Program
  • NSAP

State pilot, Tug and Barge, STCW Basic Training, and other courses are also available.

Contact Information

2PIMA Medical Institute

About the School

PIMA Medical Institute combines real college experience with a family atmosphere.

At their Seattle campus, there are eight healthcare programs available in total.

Four of these programs lead to certificates while four lead to associate degrees.

To be eligible for admission applicants need to meet the following criteria:

  • Having a high school diploma or GED equivalent
  • The approval of a parent if the applicant is under the legal age
  • Taking and passing an entrance exam

Additional requirements specific to some programs may apply.

Tuition is between $11,890-$75,600- depending on the program.

Additional fees for textbooks, uniforms, and supplies may apply.

A $225 technology fee may apply to some programs.

Courses Offered

The following certificate programs are available:

  • Dental Assistant – a program that prepares students for a career as a dental assistant, orthodontic assistant, oral surgery assistant, or surgical dental assistant
  • Health Care Administration Certificate – with this certificate students can become medical administrative assistants, medical secretaries, medical receptionists, medical office specialists, medical records clerks, or office managers.
  • Medical Assistant- a program that can lead to a career in physician’s offices, hospitals, clinics, or outpatient medical facilities.
  • Veterinary Assistant – graduates of this program are ready for employment in private veterinary clinics, animal shelters, animal hospitals, and other similar settings.

Associate Degree programs are also available in the following fields:

  • Dental Hygiene
  • Physical Therapist Assistant
  • Radiography
  • Veterinary Technician

Contact Information

  • Address: 9709 Third Avenue N.E., Suite 400, Seattle, WA 98115
  • Phone: 800-477-PIMA
  • Website: https://pmi.edu

3Divers Institute of Technology

About the School

Divers Institute of Technology is preparing students for careers as commercial divers.

The Institute offers a Professional Commercial Diver program.

To be eligible for enrollment, you need:

  • To be at least 18 years of age upon graduation
  • To hold a high school diploma or equivalent
  • To be proficient in English
  • To pass an ADCI dive physical exam
  • The ability to swim 400 meters unassisted
  • The ability to obtain a TWIC card
  • A completed application

The approximate cost of attendance is $44,500 which includes tuition, room and board, travel, food, utilities, personal, and miscellaneous expenses.

The program is completed in approximately 28 weeks by 84 percent of the students, according to the Institute’s website.

Courses Offered

The following courses are available:

  • Physics & Medicine
  • Lightweight & Rigging
  • Offshore & Hazmat
  • Welding & Underwater Welding
  • Salvage & Hydraulics
  • SCUBA & Inland
  • Deep Dives

Program certifications are also available in the following fields:

  • Unrestricted Surface Supplied Air Diver Certification with Occupational SCUBA Diver Endorsement
  • Qualified Safety Analysis
  • Qualified Rigger
  • Cylinder Services Fill Station Technician
  • Professional Commercial Diving Program Diploma
  • And many more

Contact Information

4Seattle Dental Assistant School

About the School

Seattle Dental Assistant School is offering students the chance to become dental assistants through hands-on training programs.

The curriculum is nine weeks long and prepares students for employment.

Tuition is $3,350 if paid in full before the beginning of the class.

This includes a set of scrubs, all supplies, and materials.

Students will have to buy or rent a textbook separately.

The school is now offering an online class that mirrors its in-person curriculum.

Both programs are taught by instructors with many years of experience in the field.

The schedules are flexible so students can keep a job while getting ready for a new career as a dental assistant.

If you want to enroll at the school, you have to follow a few steps:

  • Fill out and submit an online application
  • Make a deposit to secure your spot
  • Fill out enrollment forms
  • Set up a payment plan and enroll in the course

Applicants need a high school diploma, GED, or equivalent.

Course Offered

The school offers a Dental Assisting program.

The program requires a 40-hour externship before graduation.

Contact Information

5University of Washington Professional & Continuing Education

About the School

The University of Washington offers career accelerated certificate programs through their Professional & Continuing Education department.

The university offers nearly 100 certificate programs and more than 80 degrees.

Certificate programs are designed to be completed in less than one year.

Fees vary depending on the type of the program.

The registration fee is $55 and is charged only once, regardless of the number of classes you register for.

When applying for a certificate program you pay a $50 one-time application fee.

Courses Offered

The following career accelerator certificate programs are available:

  • Digital Marketing
  • Editing
  • Front-end Development with HTML, CSS & Javascript
  • Project Management
  • Python Programming

Certificate programs in a variety of fields are also offered:

  • Accounting – an online program that can be completed in 11 weeks or 8-9 months
  • Aircraft Composite Materials & Manufacturing
  • Audio Production Techniques – an online program that can be completed in 8-9 months
  • Data Science – can be completed online in 8-9 months
  • Engineering Leadership – an 11-12 month program available online and at UW Seattle.
  • And many more

Contact Information

  • Address: 4311 11th Ave. NE, Suite 100, Seattle, WA 98105-4608
  • Phone: 206-543-2310
  • Website: https://www.pce.uw.edu

6Discovery Point School of Massage

About the School

Discovery Point School of Massage provides education programs for therapeutic massage professionals.

The school’s catalog includes a Professional Massage program that can be completed in 12 months.

Tuition for this program is $11,550.

Additional costs include massage tables (between $400-700), books ($380-450), and $150 for supplies.

Students are charged for additional electives.

Applicants have to meet the following requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years of age by the start date
  • Have graduated from high school or GED
  • Be physically and emotionally capable of performing massage
  • Complete the application process

The first step in the application process is to download the school’s catalog from their website.

After reading the catalog applicants have to complete a novice class which costs a $50- fee that will be applied to your student fees.

Afterward, you have to complete an application and an admission interview.

Courses Offered

The 750-hour professional licensing program includes classes such as:

  • Applied Anatomy, Physiology, and Pathology
  • Therapeutic Massage
  • Outcome-Based Massage
  • Professional Practice
  • Student Clinic

The following electives are also available:

  • Therapeutic Alternatives
  • Electives

Contact Information

7Aveda Arts & Sciences Institutes

About the School

Aveda Arts & Sciences Institutes offers hands-on cosmetology education in Seattle.

Their cosmetology and esthiology programs offer training in the following areas:

  • Body Care
  • Business Development
  • Facial
  • Makeup Artistry
  • Retail Knowledge
  • Skin Care
  • Wellness

Tuition is $18,000 for the cosmetology class and $11,500 for the esthetician class.

Aveda Arts & Sciences Institutes is accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts and Sciences.

Courses Offered

  • Cosmetology Class
  • Esthiology Class

The cosmetology class combines theory with hands-on training and covers topics such as hair cutting, color, nail care, makeup applications, retail knowledge, and many more.

This program prepares students for the state licensing examination in cosmetology and covers the technical, personal, and business skills needed for this profession

The esthiology class covers theory, practice, and clinical study of skincare.

Graduates who complete the esthiology program are prepared to take the license exams in their states.

After getting a license, cosmeticians and estheticians are ready to work in salons and spas that offer skincare treatments.

They are ready for employment as facial/skincare specialist, waxing specialist, wellness consultant, spa directors, or Aveda educators.

Contact Information

8School of Professional Home Inspection

About the School

School of Professional Home Inspection prepares students for a career as independent home inspectors.

Classes are taught by instructors who have completed several thousands of actual inspections.

Students enrolled in the home inspection program participate in real-life projects.

The program combines lectures with hands-on training in a state-of-the-art classroom.

The classes are kept small and prepare students for the Washington State Home Inspection Exam.

To sit for your Home Inspection License exam in the state of Washington you have to meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Have completed a Fundamentals of Home Inspection course – 120 clock hours
  • Have 40 hours of field training
  • After completing the education requirements you have to submit a home inspection exam application which can be found online.

The examination fee is $125 for the state portion only, $250 for the national portion, and $300 for both portions.

Tuition for the Fundamentals of Home Inspection class is $2,500.

Courses Offered

The school offers a Fundamentals of Home Inspection class which consists of twelve 10-hour sessions.

The program emphasizes the following topics:

  • Inspection Laws
  • Washington State Standards of Practice
  • Practical inspection techniques

Contact Information


About the Program

Galvanize provides customizable corporate training that features real-world practices and hands-on projects.

The courses offered are between one day and 12 weeks long, depending on the class.

Their software engineering program can be completed in as few as 12 weeks by full-time students and in 36 weeks by part-time students.

The program is available online.

The application process starts with an application.

After a non-technical admission assessment, you are ready to begin prep.

The last two admission steps consist of a technical admissions assessment and precourse work.

Tuition varies depending on the program.

Courses Offered

Galvanize offers the following software engineering classes:

  • Angular Skill Builder
  • C#/.Net 5 Skill Builder
  • Capstone Project
  • Cloud Computing for Executives
  • Introduction to Cloud Computing
  • Cloud-Native Developer
  • Extreme Programming Essentials
  • Java/Spring Builder
  • JavaScript Essentials
  • React Skill Builder
  • TypeScript Essentials

Bootcamps are also available in the following areas:

  • Software Engineering Immersive
  • Software Engineering Online Immersive
  • Software Engineering Online Immersive Part-Time
  • Software Engineering with JavaScript and Python
  • Software Engineering Immersive Prep

Contact Information

10Seattle Central College - Wood Technology Programs

About the School

Seattle Central College provides technical instruction for over 80 years.

They offer Associate of Applied Science degree programs in residential carpentry, boat building and repair through the Wood Technology Center.

The programs can be completed in five quarters.

Tuition costs vary depending on the program.

For example, the carpentry program- which can be completed in 15 months- costs $9,125 if completed within normal time.

The pre-apprenticeship in construction trades costs $2,271 and can be completed in as few as three months.

The above costs include in-state tuition, fees, books, and supplies.

There may be additional costs for living expenses.

Courses offered

The following programs are available:

  • Carpentry- a program that helps entry-level and experienced students become professionals in the construction industry.
  • Boat Building and Repair- this program offers training in the construction and repair of watercraft and onboard systems.
  • Pre-Apprenticeship Construction Training- a program that covers hand tool and power tool use, trades math, road flagging certification, industrial safety, and more.
  • Residential Construction- a one-year program that prepares students for careers as remodelers, residential builders, or construction supervisors.

Contact Information

Salary Information for Popular Trade Careers

CareerEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Paralegals and Legal Assistants5,590$78,230$37.61$106,510$50,410
Medical Records Specialists2,250$63,460$30.51$90,630$46,290
Nursing Assistants15,890$44,520$21.4$53,040$37,750
Dental Assistants6,050$53,330$25.64$63,550$37,180
Medical Assistants10,360$54,010$25.97$63,340$44,410
Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters5,880$86,230$41.46$135,560$46,320
Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics5,960$59,670$28.69$79,720$38,530
Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers3,800$70,410$33.85$101,660$47,090
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA metropolitan statistical area, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Final Thoughts

With so many options available, choosing the career path that best suits your interests and aspirations can be hard.

To help you in this process, on this page we have compiled information about the top Seattle trade schools.

Now that you have read our list, it’s your turn to continue the research, and gather information about all the factors relevant to your decision-making process.

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