Trade Schools in Virginia

Candidates in Virginia choose to attend trade schools over conventional colleges for several reasons. For one, attending a trade school ensures that the focus is entirely on career readiness, which helps them quickly begin their careers.

Along with speed, trade school students are also confident that they have received all the prerequisite training needed for entry-level employment, after which they may continue to improve through their craft and continuing education.

For candidates looking to enroll in a trade school in Virginia, we have provided the guide below, containing relevant information that will prove very useful.

This includes the prospective education costs to expect, accreditation agencies to look out for, and a list of the top trade schools in the state, among others.

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Average Cost of Trade Schools in Virginia

When estimating the cost of attending trade schools in Virginia, it is important to consider factors that can influence these figures. It is also important to distinguish between public and private education costs.

Concerning the factors that can affect the figures, they include program location, duration, complexity, accreditation, and school reputation.

As for the overall estimate, attending a private trade school in Virginia costs between $10,000 to $30,000 per year, while attending a public trade school costs between $5,000 to $15,000.

Notable Examples

Below are some notable examples of the tuition cost of attending trade schools in Virginia:

  • An associate degree in nursing from the Northern Virginia Community College costs $9,792 annually.
  • An associate degree in mechatronics technology from Tidewater Community College costs $8,618 annually.
  • A certificate in medical assisting from Virginia Beach Technical College (a private trade school) costs $17,990 per year.
  • A diploma in dental hygiene from Piedmont Community College (a private trade school) costs $24,000 per year.

Financial Aid for Trade Schools in Virginia

Trade school students in Virginia will be glad to know that several financial aid programs are designed to help them reduce or eliminate their education costs. The state organizes some of these programs, but private, federal, and institutional organizations also award a fair few.

We examine some of the most notable alternatives below.

  • Virginia Tuition Assistance Grant - Was designed to support Virginia residents attending private schools. Candidates must be enrolled as full-time students. Students of private trade schools in Virginia may also apply. It awards up to $3,500.
  • John Randolph Foundation Scholarship - Offers varying levels of financial support for students living in Prince George, Hopewell, and several other cities in central Virginia.
  • Leo Bourassa Scholarship - Awarded by the Virginia Lakes and Watershed Foundation, the Leo Bourassa Scholarship was created to help students enrolled in an accredited college in Virginia study a program relating to water resources. The scholarship awards are between $500 and $3,000.
  • Lettie Pate Whitehead Foundation Scholarship - candidates attending accredited schools in Virginia may apply for this scholarship if they are enrolled in a nursing or allied health field.

Licensing and Accreditation for Trade Schools in Virginia

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges is responsible for awarding regional accreditation status to trade schools in Virginia. Even though regional accreditation makes it easy to transfer credits from institution to institution, not all schools in the state pursue regional accreditation.

It is common, for instance, that a few private schools in the state pursue national accreditation, which the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges awards*.* As for online schools and programs, they are accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission.

Candidates must ensure their prospective schools are accredited and registered with the state. Accreditation is not the same as registration/licensing.

The State Council of Education for Virginia maintains a list of approved public and private institutions (including trade and technical schools) in Virginia.

Top Vocational Trade Schools in Virginia

Below are some of Virginia’s most prominent trade schools offering high-quality training and convenience.


Southside Virginia Community College

Alberta , VA Online + Campus

Southside Virginia Community College in Alberta offers an array of associate degrees, certificates, and workforce development training programs for interested candidates across the state. The school boasts strong programs in business, agribusiness, counseling, computing, industrial technology, information technology, nursing, public service, teaching, and more.

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$4,620 - $6,423
  • (434) 949-1000

Mountain Empire Community College

Big Stone Gap, VA Online + Campus

Mountain Empire Community College in Big Stone Gap is another popular destination for technical and vocational training in the state. It boasts a high-quality curriculum with a focus on hands-on training.

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$4,710 - $10,713
  • (276) 523-2400

Danville Community College

Danville, VA Online + Campus

Danville Community College is a public community college with transfer-oriented programs and career readiness training in several fields. The school offers over 80 associate degree programs and certificates, with strong industry partnerships and apprenticeship opportunities.

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$4,725 - $10,728
  • (434) 797-2222

New River Community College

Dublin, VA Online + Campus

New River Community College in Dublin offers hybrid learning and hands-on training with affordable tuition and possible grants and scholarship opportunities. The school is perfect for candidates seeking a small, community-focused training environment.

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$4,697 - $10,699
  • (540) 674-3600

Eastern Virginia Career College

Fredericksburg, VA Online + Campus

Eastern Virginia Career College in Fredericksburg is "the fastest degree-granting college in Fredericksburg." The school is notable for strong business, technology, legal, and healthcare career training.

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$23,465 - $35,050
  • (540) 373-2200

Advanced Technology Institute

Virginia Beach, VA Online + Campus

Advanced Technology Institute in Virginia Beach is notable for extensive hands-on training and comprehensive curriculum in technological fields. The school boasts industry-standard equipment, ensuring students are ready for their positions upon graduation.

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$13,200 - $15760
  • (866) 971-2006

Notable Mentions

Other notable mentions include:

  • Paul D. Camp Community College in Franklin,
  • Standard Healthcare Services College of Nursing in Falls Church,
  • Eastern Shore Community College in Melfa,
  • Chester Career College in Chester,
  • Central College in Norfolk, Richmond, and Newport News, and
  • Southside College of Health Sciences in Colonial Heights.

Career Guides in Virginia

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