Get the job now. Save your money and then you can go to college in a few years if need be and pay for all your education instead of having loans. The key is to live without debt. If you don't feel the need to go to college, then you could save enough money to buy a home, cars etc with cash you have saved from working. Education is very important, but learning how to handle money is just as important. By the time you have a family, you could own a home free and clear, have no debt and have a pretty nice life. I have friends that spent tons of $$ on college and ended up with thousands in debt that took year and years to payoff. Everyone is told if they don't go to college they will be a bum in life. That's a lie and don't believe it. By the way if you do want to go to college, nowadays you have to go for longer than 4 years to separate yourself from other four year graduates. Future employers want to see why you are different then all the others they interview. Learn to talk to people and be aggressive. You will not fail with anything you choose.
I would suggest you look into specialized training for oil and gas rigs. Several schools offer that like Slippery Rock U. They are anywhere from 4 to 8 weeks, cost about 5 grand, and most get hired immediately starting at $60,000/yr. Check out;
But the hours are long.....12-14 hr days....14 days straight....with 7-10 days off.... and the work is hard, dirty and a bit dangerous and you work in all weather. Plus, you will have to travel and stay in motels or man camps.
If all that didn't scare you off, you can start at 60 to 70 G/yr and quickly mover up to 80-85G/yr. I heard of one young man that started at 65G at age nineteen, has been promoted several times, and now, at age 23, will make six figures.
Damn, wish I was 25 years younger! Good luck!
Since both endeavors require some travel, If you repair a specific type of medical equipment like lab or imaging, then go into the sales side, you could earn as much as both the oil and repair jobs combined. Then again there are probably sales jobs in the oil and gas industry that you can earn even more. If you like what you do you will enjoy life more. Good luck
I work in the industry and would love to tell you that it's gonna be stable employment for a lifetime. The fact of the matter is that it CAN be, as long as you're willing to travel to whatever spot on the planet has work!
In my 6 yr's in the patch, I've met many guys who, when the seemingly inevitable downturn arrived, found themselves working overseas for many years. Not that it's a bad thing mind you, many of these men (now company men or independent consultants), have never missed a day of employment in over thirty years, although the firms they worked for over that time have been numerous. I myself have been laid off twice, as well as fired and rehired by the same company I still work for! I've moved my family twice in 4 years (though the wife tells me we're staying in PA!) and have known others to do the same.
In just six years, I've seen raises come (not just due to a promotion) and then wages go to levels below when I started! Then raises come back again, honestly it's a very cyclical industry, and most likely will remain that way (based upon the experience of myself and others in the patch).
While we all hope that the Marcellus and the Utica turn out to be the sort of plays we can retire on, we're still skeptical having heard the whole story before. Each new play offers talk of being THE BIG ONE until the next election and the administration changes hands and rigs soon end up laid over in the grass.
The money is great, the time off is too, but I'd not suggest the field to a young man seeking a LIFETIME of guaranteed stable employment. Then again, I can't think of ANY JOB in today's economy that offers that, besides possibly US Senator or Representative!
I see,you're looking at college and a career in a technical field. I'd assume your choice is based upon a degree of technical/electronic/computer/mechanical aptitude. This sort of ability is in GREAT need in today's patch. The newest, state of the art rigs are wonders of electronic, mechanical, hydraulic and computer engineering. There is ample opportunity for those who understand and can repair these systems as downtime is a very expensive proposition and the tech who can get a rig back up and running is well compensated.
I'm not one to TELL you what to do-(unless of course you're on my crew!) but I'd suggest giving the patch a try. It most certainly is not for everyone, the hours long and hard, the work can be dirty, you work in the extreme heat and the bitter cold. Those of us with some time in the field have a saying-"it's in your blood".
Unfortunately, the only way to test for it is by giving it a shot. There's no shame in giving the industry a try by hiring on as a floorhand and seeing how the patch fits you and you fit the patch. Floorhands come and go out here and if you stick around for three or four hitches we might even remember your name! Working hard, carrying your own weight and being eager to learn will get you far. If you find that the patch doesn't suit you, feel free to move on, it's expected out here, as I said, it's in your blood or it isn't.
You may find the patch fits you and you the patch-just as I did. You do have the advantage here though as I didn't find it in my blood till after 40, and honestly cannot see myself working in any other field!
If you have any questions, feel free to PM me. We're always looking for bright young men with a work ethic who we can count on to help keep us all safe and productive!