“For the times, they are a changin’.” — Bob Dylan
It is a strange time in which we are living. We now know phrases like “social distancing.” There are no sports. You can walk into a bank with your face covered and do business without question. Lives of people who’ve done no wrong are being ruined. Many jobs have been lost and could be lost for good.
As strange as it may sound, now is an opportune time for many people to change their lives for the better. You can start preparing to learn a trade.
These uncertain times are teaching us that many people live paycheck to paycheck. Money isn’t coming in and bills can’t be paid. The state unemployment program is so overwhelmed that many people still aren’t receiving benefits. Food banks are short of food. Organizations providing free meals are struggling to fill the need.
Learning a trade can get you out of the paycheck-to-paycheck life.
The construction industry has been short of trained labor since the recession of a decade ago. There were more than 325,000 documented construction jobs available nationwide as of February. There are plenty of openings for skilled workers in Moore County as well. Electricians, plumbers, HVAC professionals, carpenters, roofers, framers, masons, welders and more are all needed.
It takes time and effort to learn these professions and it’s not easy work. But a construction trade worker can start at $20 an hour in their skill once they complete their training.
These jobs pay much better than retail or restaurants and offer far better benefits. You have an opportunity to build a career with a skill you can use no matter how bad things get. You can even build your own business.
In Moore County, you have access to training through Sandhills Community College. It offers one-year classes in electrical, plumbing, HVAC and more for the construction industry, with more classes on the way. You can complete the class, do a one-year paid apprenticeship, get licensed and begin a new career in your chosen field quickly.
Sandhills has numerous programs in a wide variety of fields that can give you the training you need to build a great life. They also have financing programs that will help you pay for your training. You’ll get your degree or certificate in your skill and have little or no debt when you start your professional career.
In the new normal that’s coming, trade skills will still be a necessity. People will always need shelter, and that shelter will always need maintenance. When school reopens in the fall you can get the proper training if you prepare now.
As crazy as it may sound, millions of people have been provided the opportunity for a do-over by this pandemic.
You can continue to live day-to-day, paycheck-to-paycheck, or you can start fresh, learn a trade, start a career and build a great life. It won’t be easy, but nothing worthwhile in life is ever easy.