Kick-Starting Your Career: 4 Jobs that Don’t Require a Degree

Everyone wants to make money and have a rewarding career, but not everyone can afford the high costs of student debt or commit four years to obtain a degree before entering the workforce. Whether you’re looking to switch to a new industry or just getting started with your career, there are luckily plenty of high-earning jobs out there that only require some training and skill-building instead of a bachelor’s.

Pharmacy Technician

Most pharmacy techs learn on-the-job and only need a high school diploma. Techs assist pharmacists in the day-to-day operations of a pharmacy in drug stores, hospitals and a variety of other medical settings. There are many vocational programs available as well that can get you certification in a year or less.
The average pay for a pharmacy technician is $31,750 (2017), according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook.

Security Guard

Security guards can work flexible hours in a variety of locations including entertainment venues, retail stores, public buildings and hospitals. There are also gaming surveillance officers who work in casino observation rooms, using video and audio surveillance equipment to prevent theft and scamming.
To a security job, there are typically physical fitness requirements and a high school diploma while surveillance officers may need experience with audio and video equipment. The average pay for security officers and surveillance officers is $28,490 and $32,680 respectively.

HVAC Technician

Vocational school and on-the-job training will help you become a certified HVAC technician. In this position, you will be responsible for the maintenance, repair and installation of heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems in both residential and commercial properties.
This is a hands-on job that’s ideal for someone who enjoys physical work and prefers to be on the move than at a desk. HVAC techs typically earn around $45,000 annually.

Web Developer

Front-end, back-end or full-stack web developers can easily earn $60,000 to well over $100,000 a year without a college degree. You’ll have to be patient and teach yourself to code, but there are plenty of free or affordable resources to help you online.
Tech is the present and future, so you won’t have to worry about job security if you become a web developer and help create the websites that power our everyday lives. From local businesses to behind-the-scenes at mega-corporations, web developers are everywhere and needed in every industry.
You may have no idea what you want to do for a living, and that’s okay! Use this time to explore your interests, refine your skills and understand your strengths and weaknesses. Make sure you know what you want to do as much as what you don’t want to do.
Give yourself time and patience to make a decision, but don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and give multiple jobs a shot. The more you explore, the greater you know yourself, and the easier you’ll be able to determine which career path is truly the best fit for you.