The Propane Industry: Leading Alternative to a College Degree

February 23, 2021

Did you know that the average student loan debt is $32,731 per student? [1] No wonder high school graduates are looking for alternatives! The cost of college has increased approximately 20% in the last five years and is on track to continue inflating in the future.

The good news for students in Pennsylvania is that there’s another career path that requires fewer years of schooling at a lower cost: trade school. Students who attend trade school save on their certifications AND begin earning a full-time salary two years faster than those who enroll in a four-year college degree program.

Earning Potential of Skilled Workers vs. College Graduates in Pennsylvania

One of the top concerns parents and students in Pennsylvania have when it comes to trade school is future earning potential. The 2020 Propane Industry Survey conducted by Gray, Gray, & Gray, LP shows the following average per-hour wage in the Northeast United States for a propane delivery driver is $24.32 ($50,585.60/year) and a propane service technician is $27.08 ($56,326.40/year).

While a college education has its benefits, the route is not for everyone. Many students want to avoid student loan debt which can take decades to pay back. The average cost of a 4-year bachelor’s degree at a university is $170,960 (plus years of interest), while most trade certificates cost between $1,200 and $15,000. It is easy to see why students take the skilled-worker direction considering the price difference along with the fact that trade school certifications allow for at least two additional years of earning potential.

Want to Start Building Relationships with Propane Employers in Pennsylvania?

Whether you’re a high school graduate or have already begun taking steps toward professional development in Pennsylvania, it’s never too early to start connecting with potential future employers in the propane industry. Building these relationships now can help you gain experience and even secure a job when the time is right. If you haven’t already, join GeneratioNext Propane Pros to create your free profile and upload your resume to start connecting with potential propane employers in Pennsylvania today.

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