College is not for everyone, but the chance to live a fulfilling life after high school is! In many cases, vocational training, trade schools and checking out different volunteer opportunities can be great alternatives to going to college. There are many organizations out there that can help to get you on the path to a job; please check out these resources:
The Regional Occupational Program (ROP)
Provides vocational training, career education, career development and workforce preparation that contribute to student academic and career success. There are local chapters across the country so check online for the office in your area.
A free education and training program that helps young people learn a career, earn a high school diploma or GED, and find and keep a good job.
California Vocational Schools
Whether you want to be a pharmacist, a chef, a nurse or if you are not sure and you just want to browse through different trade schools and small colleges in your area that can help you get on the path to your dream job, the California Vocational Schools website is for you. Find affordable and convenient trade school options in your area.
Volunteering not only gives you a chance to help others, it also provides you with valuable life experience that can help you find a job. The California Volunteers website allows you the chance to search for volunteer opportunities in your area. You can put in what you are interested in and it will match you with organizations that are looking for volunteers.
The California Conservation Corps
A state agency hiring young men and women, 18 to 25, for a year of natural resource work and emergency response. The young women and men of the Corps work hard protecting and restoring California’s environment, responding to disasters, becoming stronger workers, citizens and individuals through their service.
Your local One-Stop Career Center
A great place to call and ask if they know of any vocational training programs that match the jobs that you are interested in.
The Drive of Your Life
Provides great online tools for learning about yourself, higher education and different careers.
College or any type of post-secondary education or training can be the most exciting time of your life. It's the time when you will learn to be on your own, meet new people, see new things and start a path toward the most independent life possible for you. Take full advantage of every resource, family and friend, ask questions, make lists, don't limit yourself, and be honest about what you want and what you are capable of. And most of all…enjoy yourself!