After increasing student enrollment, a trade school teacher works with students on the engine under a car hood.

Best Enrollment Marketing Strategies For Career and Trade Schools

Are you looking to increase student enrollment rates at your trade, career, or technical school? With the need for skilled trades at an all-time high, the time has never been better to launch a robust, multifaceted marketing plan to increase enrollment. At Paramount Capital Group, we have you covered with enrollment marketing strategies that can help you raise admission rates now. 

Meet Your New Student Goals With These Enrollment Marketing Strategies

No two schools or students are the same, and neither are admissions marketing plans. But using a flexible combination of old-school and 21st-century techniques can help you find the perfect balance to attract new students and increase acceptance rates. 

Data Analytics

It’s important to understand your school’s strengths and weaknesses. Analyzing your data is going to give you the answers to develop your game plan, such as:

  • What’s your most popular course?
  • Where do you draw the most students from?
  • How many graduate on time? 
  • Who is your top employer?
  • How many take out loans vs. pay privately? 
  • How many students do you need to meet XYZ goals? 

These questions are just the tip of the iceberg of what you can learn when you analyze the data. 

Create Your School’s Story

 Several potential students stand at a registration table to learn more about student enrollment at a career school.

You need to tell a story about what makes your school special and share it everywhere online, in print, and in person. This consistent message gives you an easily remembered identity and helps prospective students understand who you are and what it’s like to be a student there. Consider your brand or mission statement or if there is a specific course for which you want to be known. Personalize the story with testimonials from teachers, students, alumni, and employers. All this gives the school powerful endorsements, making it more tangible and memorable.  

Attend School and Career Fairs

Physical school fairs still play a big role in showing students school options. Don’t miss this chance to be in front of your target audience, to answer their questions and tell them compelling information about your school. Gaining in popularity as a result of the pandemic—but also for convenience—are virtual school fairs. You may want to see how they work for you. 

Career fairs are another new student source. You may capture the attention of someone looking to change jobs or explore new interests. And, similar to school fairs, it’s easy for prospects to find out what you offer. 

Build Relationships with Guidance Counselors and Teachers 

High school guidance counselors talk to students and can mention your school to students interested in something other than a four-year college degree. Teachers also talk daily to students and know firsthand who may be interested in a technical career or one in health care, the culinary arts, construction, and more. 


Make sure you advertise or are a sponsor on local neighborhood blogs, sites, or print or online newspapers. The same goes for high school sports team programs. There are plenty of digital and print opportunities around—just look. 

Develop a Strong Digital and Social Marketing Plan

First of all, make sure your website is mobile-friendly and on par with the experience students expect. Consider adding a virtual tour so prospects can get a good look at the school. Also, make sure it’s easy to contact you and get questions answered. In addition, capture email addresses and design nurturing emails or eNewsletters to develop the relationship. 

Next, you’ll want to look into digital advertising on places like Google or Bing, employ search engine optimization, and use retargeting ads that interact with prospects once they’ve visited the website.

Lastly, students spend a lot of time on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and other social media platforms. You need to be there, too, with thoughtful content that reflects your school’s story. 

Start a Referral Program

Reach out to current and past students and encourage them to spread the word about your school. 

Offer Better Student Financing Options

While trade or technical schools aren’t as expensive as four-year colleges, they still have fees that some students may have trouble covering. If you can help students and families get tuition financing, especially those who may not have perfect credit, it’s a big differentiator that can increase admission and acceptance rates and enhance your reputation. 

That’s where Paramount Capital Group can help. We specialize in partnering with schools like yours to offer unique loan solutions so as many students as possible can take the next step and enroll. It’s the perfect complement to your enrollment marketing strategies

We offer: 

  1. A simple one-page online student application. 
  2. A same-day review of the application and credit report, as well as a decision.
  3. A compliant PDF document for approved students to sign and return.
  4. Funds remitted in three to five working days*.
  5. Loan servicing handled by us at Paramount Capital Group.

Partner with Paramount Capital Group 

If you’re looking to increase enrollment at your career school, contact us today and find out how we can help you with better, flexible student loan options that can open the door for more students. We look forward to talking and developing meaningful solutions together soon.   

*  For some short-term programs, the student must graduate in order to receive funds.

Adult instructor shows a student how to work on metal beams.

Strategies for Increasing Student Enrollment at Your Trade School

Over the last five years, post-secondary enrollments have declined, and many believe a lack of affordability is behind this steady drop in college attendance. Indeed, young adults are increasingly leaving four-year institutions with mounds of debt and no job prospects.

The good news is that there is another option: trade school. Trade schools are significantly cheaper than traditional colleges, their programs can typically be much faster, and the job outlook after graduation is bright. Even so, these schools still struggle with enrollment numbers and affordability issues. Read on to learn about strategies for increasing student enrollment at your institution to fill empty seats and serve more eager students. 

Strategies for Increasing Student Enrollment

Optimizing the Enrollment Process for Mobile

Teacher shows three students in blue clothes how to use a tool to cut metal

Mobile devices are essential to people’s lives—especially students’ lives. Without a website and enrollment process that caters to mobile phone users, the chances are that you are losing out on potential enrollments. 

With that in mind, invest in your online presence and build all of the essential enrollment utilities into your mobile website adaptation. The more people can use their phones to access their enrollment information, the more eyes will see and consider their acceptance letters and the more you can increase student enrollment

Following Up with Applicants

Even though applying to school is a big deal, acceptance letters can still get lost in people’s email inboxes. The last thing you want is for students who are ready to accept their offer never to see your message in the first place. 

Therefore, always follow up with applicants if you are still waiting to hear back about your offer. Use email, text messages, and phone calls to make sure that your applicants know that they were accepted into your program and have the opportunity to attend it. 

Communicating Financial Aid Offerings

Many people considering trade school are looking to break into an in-demand field—such as manufacturing, health care, or engineering. They believe learning a trade and swiftly entering the workforce is better than attending a traditional college. But here’s the thing: These willing trade school applicants often need financial aid to afford the necessary skills training. One study found that low-income students are 3.5 times more likely than higher-income students to attend for-profit institutions like trade schools.

Because so many trade school applicants are not in a financial position to bear the full burden of tuition, financial aid can be a deal-winner. While you cannot award every student financial aid, make applicants aware of the opportunities you have for financial aid offerings. If a student is on the fence about accepting their offer, some financial aid may be the incentive they need to pull the trigger so your school can increase student enrollment.

Offering Alternative Financing Options

If you work in the trade school industry, you should know that offering school financing options is one of the key strategies for increasing student enrollment. Sure, you can up your marketing game to garner more interest in your school, but it won’t do much good if those interested can’t afford to attend. Providing custom financing that brings in students who otherwise couldn’t afford the tuition is the best way to increase the number of eligible applicants and, subsequently, enrollments.

Trade schools will likely continue to grow in popularity among those looking to streamline their education and career advancement and cut down on educational debt. With that in mind, the schools that best give underserved students a way to pay for school will see the most success.

If you are looking for a way to provide students with alternative financing options so that they can attend your school, Paramount Capital Group can help. Our programs are geared specifically toward underserved students to give them a chance at the career they want and to increase your revenue. With more than 900 partner schools, PCG has the financing options your students need. Click here to learn more about what we can do for your business. 

Paramount Capital Group Taps Scienaptic’s AI-Powered Credit Decisioning Platform

Deployment is expected to boost alternative financing for career schools, technical schools, and other training providers

Leading global AI-powered credit decision platform provider Scienaptic AI announced today that Paramount Capital Group, LLC. has chosen Scienaptic’s AI-based underwriting platform to automate and streamline its credit decisioning and expand its customer base.

Since 1997, Paramount Capital Group has provided alternative financing for career schools, technical schools, and training providers. They have established innovative solutions, allowing educational institutions to offer an education to individuals with lower or limited credit histories. Leveraging Paramounts years of origination, servicing, collection, and compliance expertise, the Company has expanded to provide servicing for consumer lending companies. Using Scienaptic’s AI platform, Paramount Capital Group can make AI-based advanced loan decisioning, increase loan approvals and credit access, for accounts that the company purchases and services.

“Paramount Capital Group is committed to providing innovative and accessible financial products,” said Ryan Paul, CEO and Co-founder of Paramount Capital Group. “We were looking for a platform that would provide us with automation, innovation, and personalized credit decisioning, and Scienaptic AI was the perfect fit. The platform enables us to consider each individual applicant as a person with a unique story, not an impersonal credit score. We are proud of the impact we create in the community, and Scienaptic’s platform will help us amplify the impact through more approvals, lower risk, and the ability to serve more deserving consumers!”

Correspondingly, Pankaj Jain, President and Co-founder of Scienaptic AI, said, “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Paramount Capital Group on their mission of providing students with a new opportunity to receive the education they need for a meaningful career. The impact of a credit-challenged student receiving the credit they deserve is far-reaching, and we feel blessed to be a part of this journey.” 

About Scienaptic

Scienaptic AI’s mission is to increase credit availability across the globe by transforming the technology used in credit decisioning. Credit unions, auto lenders, banks, and fintechs, use Scienaptic’s AI native credit decisioning platform to continually improve the quality and speed of their underwriting decisions.

The platform enables FIs to reach more borrowers, including underbanked and underserved individuals, and say “yes” more often without increasing risk. It democratizes automated AI-powered lending while addressing all regulatory requirements, including Fair Lending and explainable adverse actions. Scienaptic-enabled lenders have processed more than 200 million transactions, benefitting millions of borrowers. For more information, visit 

About Paramount Capital Group

Founded in 1997, Paramount Capital Group is a specialty finance company that has grown to become a trusted leader in tuition financing and consumer loan servicing for career, trade, and technical schools.  

Leveraging PCG’s years of underwriting, process, collection, licensing and compliance expertise, the Company has expanded to provide servicing for consumer lending companies. Many consumer lenders and capital providers are struggling to find a reliable loan servicer that can deliver an exceptional customer experience. We provide compliant, customized, data-driven solutions designed for a superior borrower experience that ensures maximum portfolio performance. 

Find out how to put this technology to work for your loan servicing here

Are Income Share Agreements a Healthy Alternative to Traditional Student Loans?

Income Share Agreements (ISA’s) have become an increasingly popular credit option among public universities, as well as a new financial product offered to for-profit colleges and career schools. Under an ISA, students pledge a predetermined portion of their future income to pay for their present-day tuition. Payments are typically 5-10 percent of the student’s annual salary for a set number of years after graduation.1

Repayment terms often vary depending on the graduate’s earning potential. For example, a philosophy major typically will pay a higher percentage of salary than an engineering student.

A typical ISA looks something like this: Martha, a coding school student, chooses an ISA, rather than a traditional loan, to pay the $15,000 tuition required to attend. Martha is required to pay 10 percent of her gross income for 48 months after graduating. If her annualized income falls below $30,000 in a given month, she doesn’t have to pay. When her income exceeds $30,000 again, she will need to resume making payments. Martha’s total payments are capped at 200% of her tuition.

When Martha enrolled, she could have signed an installment contract with the same 48-month term, an APR of 8.99%, and a monthly payment of $373.20. So which option was better?


Traditional Loan Option

At $373.20 per month for 48 months, Martha would have paid a total of $17,913.81, or 119% of her tuition.


ISA Option

The average annual salary for a software developer is $59,000. If Martha earned an average of $59,000 during the repayment term, she would pay $23,600, or 157% of her tuition.

For both Martha and her lender, the contract is a gamble. If Martha goes on to a lucrative job, her lender earns more (limited by the 200% cap) and Martha risks paying more (as she did in the example above). But if Martha earns very little and pays back less than he or she received, her lender absorbs the loss.

ISAs seek to align the goals of students with their expectations from the education provider they attend. Proponents note that colleges have a financial stake in the success of students whose education is funded this way, something that is not the case with regular student loans. With income-share agreements, schools make less if their graduates make less and more if they make more.2

There are also downsides. In addition to the student’s risk of paying more as a reward for earning a higher salary, some ISA’s have provisions that pause the repayment period during months where people don’t earn enough. This could effectively extend an income-share agreement for someone’s entire working life. Payments as high as 20 percent could last longer than a decade.2

Repayment is also more complicated than with a regular student loan, because students have to regularly provide tax returns, payroll stubs or other evidence of how much money they earn. Failure to provide that information in a way that meets the exact terms of the agreement could throw the contract into default, converting it into a debt subject to collections, even wage garnishment.

Another potential risk is the possibility of inequities among repayment terms among similar students attending different schools. A study performed by the Student Borrower Protection Center (SBPC) provided examples tougher repayment terms for students of historically black colleges and universities (HBCU’s), despite choosing the same major as a student who did not attend a HBCU.

A defining feature of the marketing of ISAs is the idea that the contracts are not student loans or not even a form of credit. However, legal experts increasingly agree that ISAs are simply another form of consumer credit that are subject to consumer protection laws like the Truth in Lending Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010.

What’s the right answer? Income Share Agreements do offer unique alignment between a student’s desired outcome and his/her school’s responsibility to offer high-quality training. But any student or school should be aware that they are a new, unregulated financial product with no shortage of risks and uncertainty.


1 A Novel Way to Finance School May Penalize Students From H.B.C.U.s, Study Finds, New York Times, March 25, 2021

2 New Kind of Student Loan Gains Major Support. Is There a Downside?, New York Times, December 16, 2019

3 See generally Aryn Bussey, “Educational redlining? The use of educational data in underwriting could leave HBCU & MSI graduates in the dark”, Student Borrower Prot. Ctr. (Jul. 24, 2019),