16 Best Paying Entry Level Jobs Without a College Degree
Updated on: by Olivia
I have a college degree, and although it has helped me land some great jobs from home, I learned the hard way that I didn’t need a degree to do what I am doing.
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However, it was beaten into my head at an early age that in order to make it in this world and have a high paying job, you have to get a degree.
Although I don’t regret the experience of college, I do regret the amount of debt I have racked up and had I not gone, I would be on my way to financial freedom.
So, if you don’t have a college degree, don’t freak out! You can still make a lot of money without one. In fact, you may actually fair better than someone with a college degree.
My parents pushed college on me, and I thought it was my only option to make it in this world. However, thousands of people are finding that you can make a living without it.
If you are thinking about going to college or think you should push your child into going to college, here are a few reasons you should skip college!
- It’s expensive. Let’s face it; college puts you in debt before you can even get started in this world. Gone are the days of being able to work part-time and pay your way through college.
- Too many people are going. The more people continue to push college, the less jobs there are available to those with a degree. This means you are literally fighting thousands for one job.
- Trades are in high demand. As more people go to college, less are pursuing a trade. This means trade jobs are in high demand and they are willing to pay good money, too.
- People change. I went to school to be an educator, but now, I am a VA and writer. People change and you may not like what you went to school for.
- You may not get a job. Just because you get a degree doesn’t mean you are going to land the career of your dreams. And, you still have to work your way up the totem pole.
Of course, if you are dead set on going to college, always do what makes you happy! However, if you are looking for alternatives, you have come to the right place.
Boost Your Resume
Although you won’t need an associate or bachelor’s degree for these jobs, you may need some experience or certification depending on the type of job you want.
And, it is always a good idea to make your resume stand out when applying to a job even if it is an entry-level position.
Here are a few ways to boost your resume:
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- Emphasize your strongest credentials
- Highlight experience or extra credentials
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Once you have believed you have what it takes and boosted your resume, it is time to start job hunting!
Here’s my List of High Paying Entry Level Jobs Without a Degree
It is important to keep in mind that even though these jobs may not require a degree, they may require special training, certification, or a trade school.
However, many places will pay for such training if you don’t have it. So, even if you feel you are not qualified, send your resume anyways because you may surprise yourself.
Here’s your list of the highest paying entry level jobs without a degree:
Margin Department Supervisor
Do you have a knack for credit? Can you tell who will be wise with their line of credit and who won’t based on a credit check? If you do, you can make up to 83,000 per year!
Margin Department supervisors oversee a specific companies credit accounts and approves or denies a customer for credit.
You won’t need a degree for this job, but you will need to know the basis of accounting and finances as you will be required to make mathematical calculations.
Here are a few places that hire for this type of job:
Air Traffic Controller
The job of an air traffic controller has been voted as the most stressful job in the US; however, you can make almost $75,000 per year doing it!
As an air traffic controller, you do not need a college degree, but you must be able to pass rigorous tests administered by the FAA.
You must be in good health as well as be mentally stable. Here are a few places that regularly hire for Air traffic controllers:
Service Station Manager
Did you know you could actually get paid $72,000 per year to work at the gas station? As a service station manager, you are responsible for day to day operations of the gas station.
You will set gas prices for the day, schedule employees, order new merchandise, and take care of day to day functions. This position is typically had by working up the ladder.
Check indeed for service station manager jobs in your area!
Real Estate Broker
The great thing about being a real estate broker is the income is totally up to you. Most brokers make about $71,000 per year! However, the more you sell, the more you make.
To become a real estate broker, you will to take a few classes to become certified, but it will be far less than going through college.
Not only is this a lucrative way to make money without a degree, but many companies allow you to do it from home.
Here are a few places you can check out to become a real estate broker from home:
You can make $66,000 or more per year being a landscaping architect. Of course, this depends on where you live and the seasons you have.
If you have warmer seasons, you may find that this is a great way to make a living without ever going to college.
You can also choose whether or not you want to be certified. Certification does help you get bigger clients and projects.
The best way to make money as a landscaping architect is to start your own business. This way you can set your own hours and your own pay.
Sign up at 1.800. Contractor so customers can find your business.
Lead carpenters make upwards of $63,000 per year. As a carpenter, you have to be good at your skill which means you may need a trade school.
Another great way to get into the carpentry field is to work through a union. Unions offer you a paid apprenticeship as well as trade school that you don’t have to pay for.
I actually have a friend who did this, and he gets paid $18 per hour, paid health care, and all his classes for free. Here are a few union halls to check out:
Director of Security Guards
If you want to become the director of security, you may have to start out in an entry-level position as a security guard.
The great thing about being a security guard is that you don’t need to go to college to be one. You simply need to have the will to serve and protect.
You will need to pass a background check and possibly go through a security guard training program depending on the company you choose to work for.
The training would be paid for. So, this is a great route to work yourself up to $60,000 per year.
Supervisor for a Cable Company
Seriously, can anyone live without cable in this day and age? Well, I am sure some people can, but there is a big market here for cable companies.
As a cable supervisor, you can make $60,000 per year. And, you don’t even have to be the one to set up the cable boxes.
Your duties will include overseeing the maintenance and installation workers that set up the cable boxes.
You can apply as an entry-level cable installer and work your way up to a supervisor. Check out these popular companies for jobs in your area:
If you have a knack for taking beautiful pictures, you can make around $47,000 per year being a freelance photographer.
This kind of work may require you to travel to take the perfect picture; however, there are many stay at home parents that do this in their free time and never have to travel.
You can take pictures for magazines, newspapers, recipes, or even bloggers. To get started in this niche, here are a few great places to start selling your photography skills:
If you are a person who really values a healthy lifestyle, you can become a personal trainer. As a personal trainer, you can make around $37,000 per year.
You will need to have a certificate to teach, but this certificate does not cost much. You can work for a company, but the most lucrative personal trainers work for themselves.
So, if you want to make your own schedule and the income you desire, working for yourself is the best option.
As sad as it is, people die on a daily basis. Because of this, funeral directors make about $80,000 per year.
So, if you love being there for people who are going through a hard time, and love to offer a helping hand and support, this is a great job to get into.
You will need training for this job, but a college degree is not necessary. Here is a list of places you can find funeral director positions:
If you like driving and traveling, you don’t have to go to college to be a truck driver. You will simply need your CDL license which you can get from the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
Not only can you get your CDL on your own, but many companies will pay for and train you to drive for them. Here are some companies to check out:
Most truck drivers make about $45,000 per year or more depending on the company they go with.
If it was always your dream to be a firefighter as a kid, now you can fulfill that dream without going to college. Firefighters make an average of $30,000 per year.
Firefighting is a dangerous job, but somebody has to do it, and you can get a great paycheck by saving people’s lives.
You must have a high school diploma, but most fire stations will pay you and train you to become a firefighter. So, if this sounds like it is for you head down to your local fire station, today.
Learn to become a firefighter, today.
If you are looking for a job that allows you to stay home and work around your own schedule, a medical coder is a great non-college option.
As a medical coder, you will need a background in medical terminology as well as a certificate, but you can get that in as little as 6 months.
Not only can you make around $47,000 per year, but you don’t have to commute either saving you more money.
Here are a few places that hire medical coders from home:
- Change Healthcare
- The Coding Network
- Conifer Health Solutions
- Himagine Solutions
- Maximum Healthcare Services
- UnitedHealth Group
One of my favorite jobs to get into without a degree is freelance writing. You don’t have to have certifications or experience to be a writer.
You should have understanding of the English language and be able to write with proper grammar and sentence structure.
However, as a freelance writer, you can write on a plethora of Niches that you enjoy all from your couch.
Some people are making 6-figures writing from home. Here are a few places that continuously seek out freelance writers from home:
If you can type with lightning speeds and pay keen attention to detail, you can make a great living as a transcriptionist.
Not only can you make around $40,000 per year, but you can do this all from the comfort of your home!
Here are a few places that actively hire transcriptionists:
- Accutran Global
- Birch Creek Communications
- Casting Words
- Daily Transcription
- GMR Transcription
- Neal R. Gross
If you are looking for more jobs that fit your field of expertise, check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics for a more in-depth look.
Have you found a high paying job without a degree?
Share your job experience in the comments below!