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99 High-in-Demand Careers Without a College Degree

Written by on March 07, 2022

The future of work is not about degrees. It’s about the skills. 

I said what I said and I stand by my words.

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The cost of a college degree is now around five times more expensive than it was just two decades ago. That’s a lot knowing that solely having a degree doesn’t guarantee you employment once you graduate from your studies. What’s more, after they finish their studies, many people feel disappointed to find out their bachelor’s degree has little or nothing to do with the practical value in the business world. Everything, in the end, comes down to experience and skills.

Today, many people who choose to go to university, end up with crushing debt they are struggling to repay. The struggle to repay is there even with a good-paying job. What’s more, some analysts predict that a mass student loan debt can be the start of the next financial crisis.

When is a good idea to go to college?

student

While many employers now don’t require a diploma from their candidates, some professions still require formal education. This is the case for the medical or engineering field, for instance, that serves as the foundation for succeeding in a certain career path.

When you can take the faster road?

If you feel like studying is a big waste of time, and you think hands-on experience is more important, you’d be glad to hear that more and more employers now value more the experience and skills compared to formal education. 

Furthermore, many young adults feel pressured by their parents to get into college, with no clear career path in mind, and end up in-depth, while never working in the field they studied for. If that’s the case with you, a good idea would be to skip college and try with more hands-on experience.

The bottom line is: in many cases, experience is more important than the actual degree.

This is why we decided to provide you with a list of 99 high-in-demand careers that don’t require a college degree.

Claims Adjusters

Working as a claims adjuster can be a rewarding career path for many. These individuals earn a median salary of $40,850, and they are usually responsible for investigating insurance claims. While this job doesn’t require a college degree, insurance companies prefer people with an investigative background such as former police workers and detectives.

Real Estate Agent

real estate agent

If you enjoy watching TV shows such as Million Dollar Listing or Tiny House Nation, then you should maybe consider pursuing a career as a real estate agent. Real estate agents can earn a decent wage that ranges anywhere between $30,000 to $180,000 per year.

While being a real estate agent does require a license, anyone with a high school diploma is eligible to apply for the real estate exam. 

However, if you do choose to pursue this career path, you should know that many real estate agents work long hours and on weekends, and usually earn their wage by working on commission, which can be stressful for some.

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Freelance Writer

Freelance writer. Mac with an open document across the screen.

If expressing creativity with words was never a problem for you, you should maybe consider pursuing the career of a freelance writer. While it is true that most freelance writers don’t earn much in the beginning, persistence, constant improvement, and building relationship with clients can allow them to have good wages, with the most successful ones earning up to $100,000 or more.

Electrician

electrician working on site.

If you want to have a stable job that pays well, then becoming an electrician can be the right career choice for you. Electricians can earn up to $30 per hour, and their main duties are installing, maintaining, and repairing electrical devices. 

Bookkeeper

If you’re good with numbers then you might consider pursuing a career in bookkeeping. These individuals can earn up to $38,390 a year, and they’re responsible for producing financial records for companies.

Media equipment manager

If you’re into pop culture and constantly looking at what celebrities are doing, a media equipment manager could be a good career choice for you since you’ll be able to meet famous politicians, stars, and athletes. Media equipment managers usually handle media gear and earn up to $59,040.

Paralegal assistant

Paralegal assistant

Paralegal assistant can be yet another rewarding career that can help you earn up to $49,500 without a college degree. The work usually entails document drafting and client relationship management, with additional duties depending on a law office.

Executive assistant

Executive assistants are responsible for helping higher-level management officials to meet their goals and manage their schedules more efficiently. In case you’re great at multitasking, this might be a rewarding career path that can earn you up to $37,230 a year.

Pet groomer

Pet groomer

If you love animals and you’re creative, then this job is right for you. Pet groomers are responsible for cleaning, brushing, cutting, and styling pets’ hair, earning around $22,230 per year.

Sales Representative

If you love talking to people and have persuasive skills, then a career in sales might be the right fit for you. Sales representatives, as the name implies, have the responsibility of selling products or services to customers. They can usually earn up to $58,011 per year, depending on the industry they’re in.

A mystery shopper

A mystery shopper is an intriguing career that doesn’t require a college degree. By the statistics, mystery shoppers can expect a yearly income of $20,000 doing this job. However, this job comes with an interesting perk: mystery shoppers usually get to keep products they’re asked to buy.

Illustrator

While a college degree isn’t compulsory to become an illustrator, you still need to have some training and artistic flair. Illustrators’ careers can prove to be financially rewarding, as illustrators can earn around $57,410 a year. Lastly, this career choice can prove to be dynamic and interesting as illustrators usually have to wear several hats, trying to attend to the needs of various clients.

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Web developer

web developer

Web developers are in high demand, given the fact we’re living in a digital era, with almost everything running online. Web developers are usually in charge of overseeing the technical workings of a website. They monitor performance data, ensuring users have a seamless experience, and usually earn around $66000 per year.

Computer Support Specialist

With a median salary of $52,690 and an unemployment rate of less than 5%, tech-savvy people might find a rewarding career as computer support specialists. Computer support specialists are usually responsible for troubleshooting tech problems over the phone, chat, email, and even face-to-face.

Fitness Coach

fitness coach

If you love to work out and help others stay healthy and fit, then becoming a fitness coach might be the right career choice for you. Fitness coaches usually do require professional certification and can work even remotely providing video lessons and tutorials.

Information Security Analyst

As the name implies, Information Security Analysts are responsible for protecting an organization’s computer systems. Their sole task is to keep data safe from prying eyes, plan and carry out security measures such as installing firewalls and data encryption programs. While some organizations prefer hiring people with a degree, some are open to hiring people with sufficient working experience.

Software Developer

Becoming a software developer is yet another lucrative career choice that doesn’t require a degree. Software developers are responsible for creating, fixing, and updating programmes. Usually, individuals who pursue this career have strong problem-solving skills.

  • Hearing Aid Specialists–Hearing aid specialist administers tests for customers and interprets results. They usually earn up to ​​$ 54,630.
  • Receptionist–If you enjoy working with people, then becoming a receptionist might be a good career option for you. This position is, in most cases, just a jumpstart to higher positions within the hospitality industry.
  • Dispatcher– If you love logistics and transportation, then becoming a dispatcher might be a good option for you. With this position, you can expect a living wage of s $16.59 per hour.
  • Mechanic–If you enjoy fixing things, and you simply love cars, then, becoming a mechanic might be the right fit. Mechanics usually earn around $44,050 per year.
  • Chef–If making yummy dishes is your passion, then you should consider pursuing a career path as a professional chef. The most persistent and successful professionals find this to be one of the most rewarding career paths, both professionally and financially.
  • Cosmetologist–If you thrive on helping people feel good then a career in cosmetology might be the right fit for you! There are wide arrays of specialities within this field, and you can become either a nail technician, hairstylist, or administer cosmetic procedures.
  • Firefighter–While becoming a firefighter doesn’t require a degree, you’ll still have to possess a certain level of physical fitness to do this job. If you have what it takes, we’re sure you’ll find this career path rewarding.
  • Gaming managers–You enjoy gambling, but you’re afraid you’ll become addicted? If you become a gaming manager, you’ll have the privilege to see how casinos work and make sure everything runs smoothly.
  • Lead Carpenter–If you enjoy making new things, then becoming a carpenter might be a rewarding career path that pays well.

Other high-in-demand careers you might want to consider

  • Court reporter
  • Civil Engineering Assistant
  • Commercial pilots
  • Ultrasound Technician
  • Elevator Installers and Repairer
  • Actuary
  • Physician Assistant
  • Computer Network Architect
  • Detectives and Criminal Investigator
  • Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairer
  • Fire Inspectors and Investigator
  • Insurance Appraisers (Auto Damage)
  • Personal care aid
  • Bartender
  • Radiation therapists
  • Air-traffic controllers
  • Events Manager
  • Headhunter
  • Recruiting Coordinator 
  • Photographer

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  • Ship engineers
  • First-line supervisors of non-retail sales workers
  • Transit and railroad police
  • ​​Power plant operators
  • Pharmacy Technician
  • Flight Attendant
  • Firefighter
  • Plumber
  • Medical Technician
  • Business Intelligence Analyst
  • Travel Agent
  • Phone Interviewer
  • Transportation, Storage, and Distribution Manager
  • Makeup Artists 
  • Business Operations Manager
  • Massage therapist
  • Hairstylist
  • Brick Mason
  • Postal Service Worker
  • Subway and streetcar operator
  • Locomotive engineers
  • Transit and railroad police
  • Gas plant operators
  • Magnetic resonance imaging technologist
  • Ship engineer
  • Signal and track switch repairer
  • Dental hygienists
  • Petroleum pump system operators, refinery operators, and gaugers
  • Radiation therapist
  • Occupational therapy assistant
  • Construction manager
  • Signal and track switch repairer
  • Truck driver
  • Surveyor
  • Gas-plant operator
  • Transportation manager
  • Welder
  • Immigration and customs inspector
  • Emergency Medical Technician
  • Medical Coder
  • Information Technology Technician
  • Criminal Investigator
  • Director of Security
  • Cable Supervisor
  • Flight Services Manager
  • Nuclear Power Reactor Operator
  • Funeral service director
  • Power distributors and dispatcher
  • Detectives and criminal investigator
  • Margin Department Supervisor
  • Automobile Service Station Manager
  • Landscape Architect

Final words

If Shakespeare’s Hamlet was written today, I’m sure he’d be wondering whether “To go to college or not to go to college”. Luckily, he wouldn’t have to break his head for long. We hope he’d stumble upon this article and find out what his next big step in his career would be.

The question is, did you?

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