Vocational Education Teacher
Vocational education teachers help students develop practical career skills in middle school, high school, community college, or privately-owned trade schools. Also called career or technical education teachers, they have experience in skill-based occupations such as agriculture, cosmetology, and plumbing. These educators and leaders help shape young leaders of tomorrow by teaching them the specific skills they need to be successful in their chosen trade.
Vocational education teachers must be creative, resourceful, and patient to create innovative career-readiness programs for students with differing abilities. They must also have strong communication skills, the ability to lead, and expert-level skills in their subject. They are responsible for helping students develop a specific set of skills through hands-on lesson plans, assignments, and exams. They also monitor students’ safe use of tools and equipment, as well as their progress, and evaluate their knowledge and performance. Some teachers specialize in one subject, while others teach a variety of subjects. In addition to teaching skills, vocational education teachers sometimes place students in actual work settings and monitor their progress.
Most teachers need bachelor’s degrees, plus three-five years of work experience in their field. Some specialties require licenses or certification, with education and training requirements varying by state and subject. Vocational education teaching jobs are expected to grow 7% by 2026 at the middle school level and 6% at the high school level, with the most opportunities in fields such as computer technology, automotive mechanics, and medical technology.