FOX43 Finds Out: What training may be your best bet to land a job

LANCASTER, Pa -- Manufacturing, welding and plumbing.

These are all jobs trade industry experts here in central Pennsylvania say need young workers.

"Everybody has the same pain, they can't find qualified people."

Wes Geib has worked in the manufacturing industry for 50 years.

It wasn't until he recently when to a career fair that he realized there just aren't enough recent high school graduates considering technical training.

"There were 125 employers and 20 of us were looking at a graduating class of 13."

With the economy improving, Geib says there are hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs open in the US.

Those jobs require specific technical training that you typically won`t find at a traditional four year college.

Geib though, believes many high school students don`t even know technical training, at a trade college or votech, is even an option.

Damien Brodbeck, a senior at Northeastern High School in York County, was one of those kids.

"Traditional school, that's all I thought there was. Four years, four years and then I had talked to guidance and they helped me."

He`s heading to Thaddeus Stevens college in Lancaster County after graduation to focus on Engineering CAD.

Something he realized was an option after chatting with his guidance counselor Eric Bierker.

"It's like a buffet. You want to give people an opportunity to look at all the options and they're going to make a decision which is best for them."

Sometimes that decision comes down to dollar signs.

According to a recent study from the Idaho Department of Labor, the average costs of a bachelor`s degree is $127,000.

While, the average cost of a trade school education is about $33,000.

"They can actually make more sometimes in their 2-year degree, technical hands on trade vocational trading, then they would with a four-year degree."

Now that can be harder to prove.

The jobs that require a bachelor`s degree have a big range of salaries and those that require a technical degree do too.

Age and experience are big factors also.

However, there is some data from the National Center for Educational Statistics.

On average, a person with a bachelor`s degree earns $46,900 year, while a technical school grad earns $35,720 per year.

again, take those numbers with a grain of salt.

It`s just hard to study something that broad.

However, Brodbeck says he`ll be done with school at Thaddeus Stevens by the time he`s about 20 years old and says he`ll be making about $50,000 a year.

"I'm going to have a job set in stone before anyone else is done with their schooling."

Marci Beggs will graduate from Thaddeus Stevens in a few weeks.

She has a water and environmental technology job lined up.

She says she`ll be making at least double the starting salary as most of her friends with bachelor`s degrees.

"I wanted a career and not just a job somewhere."

Katie Surra is one of Begg`s instructors at Thaddeus Stevens.

She says her recent graduates are all making decent money.

Surra thinks it`s hard to talk to high school students about salaries, though.

She says she tries to break it down for kids at career fairs, but thinks teenagers just don`t understand what a livable wage really is.

"Students graduating from the program will earn a good wage. They're able to support their family, afford a house, a car and some vacations and stuff. What do you think that means? I got answers back starting at $10,000 a year."

No. Her students are making much more than $10,000 a year, Surra says.

"Somewhere between $18-$22 an hour."

One reason guidance counselor Bierker thinks these trade jobs are paying well right now is because those gigs are hard to out source.

"You can't call Mexico or China and say 'Can I please have a plumber come to house on a Sunday night because my toilet just over flowed."

Even so, Geib and experts at Thaddeus Stevens say, recently more people are considering a trade industry job.

There are still just not enough bodies though to do the work.

"That one company is looking for 95 welders every year for the next five years. Thaddeus Stevens isn't turning around enough welders in that years time to supply that demand."