Colleges & Trade Schools in Rhode Island
| Last Updated
Trade schools in Rhode Island offer skills-focused programs that give students the chance to prepare for a whole new world of professional possibilities. Vocational training can help you become an important contributor in a variety of sectors that are thriving in the Ocean State, such as manufacturing, business, health care, and education.
Education & Training in Rhode Island
Whether you enroll in a university, college, or career school in Rhode Island, you can enjoy a range of distinctive advantages.
Key Benefits of the Region for College Students
- Proximity to major commercial centers: Many Rhode Island students are within easy reach of Boston and New York City, with countless possibilities for internships and other valuable experiences.
- Greater affordability: The cost of living in Rhode Island is lower than in neighboring Connecticut, Massachusetts, or New York.
- Rising incomes: Between 2014 and 2019, personal income in Rhode Island grew by 16.4 percent, according to Bureau of Economic Analysis numbers.
Rhode Island's colleges, technical schools, and other post-secondary institutions charge students different amounts. But based on National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) estimates, the average tuition and fees at four-year schools in the state during the 2018-2019 academic year were as follows:
- Public schools: $12,576 (in-state); $29,998 (out-of-state)
- Private schools: $42,108
If you enroll in a two-year institution, your yearly tuition and fees may be less than those figures.
Students who lived on campus paid the following average amounts for room and board, according to the same NCES data:
- Public schools: $12,251
- Private schools: $15,069
Rhode Island Trade School Accreditation
Accreditation signals that a school has met the quality criteria of an independent agency. Accredited schools are regularly evaluated to ensure they continue to meet or exceed those criteria, and they can lose their accreditation if they don't measure up.
Federal financial aid is only awarded to students who attend schools that are regionally or nationally accredited by an agency approved by the U.S. Department of Education.
The New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) is the regional accreditor for Rhode Island. Examples of national accreditors include:
- Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC)
- Accrediting Council for Continuing Education & Training (ACCET)
- Council on Occupational Education (COE)
Private post-secondary schools that do not grant degrees must be approved by the Council on Postsecondary Education, which is part of the Office of the Postsecondary Commissioner.
Financial Aid for Rhode Island Students
In Rhode Island, state funds are given to post-secondary institutions, which then distribute the money to students in the form of grants. Contact the school you'd like to attend to see what's offered. To make sure you are considered for any available aid, you need to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) every year.
Scholarships are another potential source of non-repayable aid. For instance, the Rhode Island Student Loan Authority (RISLA) offers the Knowledge for College Scholarship, which is worth $2,000. RISLA also provides a database of local scholarships.
In addition, you can explore scholarship offerings from the Rhode Island Foundation.
FAQs About Being a Student in Rhode Island
How expensive is off-campus housing in this state?
Based on statewide data, you can expect to spend a median of $798 per month to rent a studio apartment in Rhode Island. The median cost of a one-bedroom unit is $845. Both of those amounts are lower than the nationwide medians.
What transportation options exist?
The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) provides bus service to nearly every community in the state. And through the U-PASS program, students at participating institutions can purchase discounted passes or even ride for free, depending on the school.
Commuter rail service is also available between Providence, T.F. Green, and Wickford Junction.
What other resources can be helpful for Rhode Island students?
Ocean State Libraries is a consortium of public libraries that enables Rhode Island residents to enjoy digital access to databases, books, and other research tools. Its Park 'n Surf program allows you to take advantage of free Wi-Fi in the parking lot of participating libraries, so you can get online without having to go inside.
Rhode Island Schools
- Computer Systems Support Technician
- Dental Assistant
- Massage Therapy
- Medical Assistant
- Practical Nursing
Focused Training for What Lies Ahead
This small-yet-mighty state offers plenty of big opportunities for anyone who aspires to a more enriching vocational life. Through the job-centered programs at trade schools in Rhode Island, motivated students like you can begin creating the future they want.