Higher education is still an option for people considering careers in the trades. Pima Community College offers courses to prepare them for those jobs. Patrick Lawless serves as department head of PCC's Building and Construction Technologies program. He described how public perception of trade careers has evolved.
"I think the professions are getting more respect than they have in the past," Lawless said. "I had a contractor from Phoenix … she told me a couple of her techs are making over $150,000 a year."