25 Top paying jobs without a degree

25 top paying jobs without a college degree... http://christianpf.com/paying-jobs-without-degree/...After recently writing about the debate of whether a college degree was still worth it or not, I have been doing a little bit more research on the topic. I found out about the growing FauxPloma industry and I recently stumbled on an article that talks about the top paying 25 jobs that you can get without a degree. In the article, the author makes a couple encouraging statements for those without a college degree...Can you get a good paying job without a degree?

After recently writing about the debate of whether a college degree was still worth it or not, I have been doing a little bit more research on the topic. I found out about the growing FauxPloma industry and I recently stumbled on an article that talks about the top paying 25 jobs that you can get without a degree. In the article, the author makes a couple encouraging statements for those without a college degree…

The belief that you need a college education to have a well-paying and rewarding job is quickly fading. A four-year degree definitely has its benefits in the business world, but it’s not the only path to a successful career.


“…according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), eight of the 10 fastest-growing occupations through 2014 don’t require a bachelor’s degree. And these jobs, which include health technology, plumbing, firefighting and automotive repair, are less vulnerable to outsourcing. After all, if a fire breaks out, you need the fire department to be a few blocks away, not halfway around the world.”


As I mentioned in the previous posts I wrote about college degrees, regardless of whether or not you get a college degree, you have to be a learner. Success comes from learning. If you don’t have a college degree, but you are a lifelong learner devoted to developing yourself and learning new and relevant skills you will be successful. If you are under the assumption (that I was at an earlier point in my life) that you can get a degree, quit learning and coast through life, you are likely to be disappointed.

The mind of the prudent acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.

Proverbs 18:15

Do you really need a job?

The last couple years have taught me that there are legitimate work-from-home jobs out there and other ways to make money online. After getting laid off a couple years ago I started to step up my efforts to make money blogging and now I am a full-time blogger and couldn’t love my job more!

Starting a business isn’t for everyone, but even a small-side business can be a great supplemental income source. Places like Elance and Odesk have thousands of writing positions available if freelance writing is your thing. I wrote a step-by-step guide to starting an Ebay business as well as a guide to making money writing articles for Hubpages – both can be small side-businesses that can generate some extra cash if your day job just isn’t cutting it – and best of all – they don’t require a college degree!

25 top paying jobs that you can get without a degree

25 of the top-paying jobs that don’t require a four-year degree and their average salaries, based on data from the BLS and CBSalary.com. It is important to note that some of these jobs DO require some kind of a degree, just not a 4-year degree. As many have commented below many of the jobs do require formal training of some kind or even a two-year degree.

I thought it was particularly interesting to see that Air Traffic Controllers topped the list at $100K/yr. Who knew? A couple of the other interesting jobs were…

  • Funeral Director (about $80K)
  • Real estate broker: (about $58K)
  • Dental hygienist (about $60K)
  • Detective and criminal investigator (about $54K)
  • Commercial pilot (about $54K)

Click To read the rest of the 25 top paying jobs without a college degree.

One of the things that struck me a little was that the author said there were more than 50 million jobs available that pay over $40,000 a year and DON’T require a 4-year degree! As a college grad who went to college mostly so that I could make more than $40K/yr I am pretty blown away by that statistic.

The biggest thing I learned from reading this article is that just like most things in life, there are always alternate routes. If you have the mindset that you can only get a good job if you have a college degree, then that is all you are likely to find. But if you desperately look for opportunites that don’t require a degree, then you are going to be a lot more likely to stumble upon one.

“So while a college degree was de rigueur for the Baby Boom generation, that’s not necessarily the case now. In today’s highly technical and service-related market, workers are judged more on their skills than their sheepskins.”

The truth is that the world is changing – and fast. Finding a job/career like our parents (with security, pensions, etc) just probably isn’t going to happen. The best way we can handle it is to stay up to speed with what is going on in the world around us and get educated. I don’t necessarily mean a college degree, but learning is always going to be beneficial. Whether it is learning how to be a better _______ (insert job here), improve your time management skills, or improve your interviewing skills, learning will always be beneficial.

By the way, if you are doing a job search, here are some job sites to help you find one. Or if you are looking to work from home, here are some legit companies that will allow you to do that.


  1. i may try the funeral job. My current career seems to be at a dead end.

    • This made me LOL!

      Anyway, I might try my hand at real estate. My mother is a licensed civil engineer, but quit her job to become a real estate broker. She’s earning more from being a real estate broker than working for the government as an engineer.

  2. Brian,
    good question – it is amazing to me how we as a country are veering from all the things that made it a great one in the first place…

  3. Interesting post. I have to admit that I am surprised to see a few of these jobs on this list, I would have thought some of them required a degree. I do whole heartedly believe, however, that everyone who has the means to go to university, should do so. Regardless of whether you then go on to use that degree in any way, attending university teaches you to think in ways that you might never discover otherwise, and encourages original research and exposes students to so many different schools of thought and differences in opinion. I don’t think you can put a price on that. I also think that if you go straight into a profession without a degree, your options may be restricted later on, if you want to make a career change. Here in the UK, having a degree is certainly still the most desirable thing to see on someone’s CV, and is a prerequiste if you want to work in a non-technical industry.

    • pamela rice


  4. I like the list but I find “#11. Computer specialist: $59,480″ a little vague. True, but vague nonetheless. I think we’re ALL specialists in some aspect of computer-ization these days! 😉 Interesting list indeed though…

  5. I believe computer specialist is someone who has vast knowledge of computers from networking, system administration and hardware.

  6. D'Ann Dunabr

    ARE YOU KIDDING? I am a pilot. More than a few of these ‘no degree’ jobs you state are miss leading. The common person needs to know:
    there is a LOT of money dropped to get a couple of these jobs. On the education it takes, and a good mind to go with it. Not to mention the psych stuff has to be checked out too. Dream on people. The “degree” !! Is still there and payed for.

    • pamela rice


    • All of the money you “payed” bought an excellent education.

  7. Please tell me the average pay salary for an EMT. Also, what is a Computer Tech exactly?

  8. Are you kidding…..some of these jobs reguire some kind of college; and some difficult college…. dental hygienist….not easy!

    • Ralph T.

      The article said some college, just not a four year degree.

  9. Hedge fund manager, save some money from working at McD’s, learn how to trade, generate a track record, start a fund, and make millions per year. There are hedge fund managers making HUNDREDS of millions per year literally without even a high school diploma, and the income potential is truly unlimited, the best of both worlds.

    In general, you can be a ceo without a college degree too. Start your own business is another great high paying thing to do with no degree.

  10. toothcleaner

    how funny #18 is Dental Hygienist…and in order anyone to practice in this field in any state must obtain a college degree and past not only a written national exam, but a clinical exam, ( just like a dentist )…so should it be on this list…i think now

  11. Was that funeral job a joke? Cuz that was pretty good… Haha jobs at a dead end…

  12. C.J. Rogers

    NO!!! NO!!! NO!!! I do not believe a word of it I have worked in manufacturing for years and learned everything about the jobs I had. Then watch the people that knew nothing run the company’s into the ground. I am 36 and went back to school to get a degree in software engineer. I got sick of the ones with degrees think they were smarter then me.Worst yet taking an idea I had and calling it theirs then getting large bonuses for my ideas. All the time calling me a liar for fighting them for my idea. No I say a degree so you can walk away from an injustice without putting your family into any trouble with money!

    • First of all you had a great point of all theses college people thinking they know everything.As a wise man once said you cant fix stupid and there is a whole lot of stupid in the buisness world.Mainly because if you have a degree, in any companys eyes you are qualified to do any job( please!)Thats why we are so screwed up today you have people with no on job training with no common sense making the calls these days.Management loves new kids cause they know no better and and they can mold them in the shady ways they operate.

  13. All I can say is that I don’t have a degree of any kind. I am a store manager for a check cashing service and I get paid about 70k a year. NO DEGREE!!! I think that the jobs are out there we just need to look and learn when we do find something. I make more than teachers, police, and quite a few others with no degree. I always tell my kids it’s really important for them to get an education because I really believe that! It is important for many reasons but not to be a top earner! Good luck everyone!

    • Paula

      Hi A.V,R thanks for your information. Can you share what you had to do to make it as a store manager? What type of working experience did you have prior to that?

  14. hernan lamatao

    all of you’ve said are i think needs a college degree except for the plumber…and am pretty sure it was applicable only in europe,k.s.a. and usa; and not in third world countries like the philippines that even a janitor must have a four years course in tertiary before it will accepted on that job…..

  15. I dont know where the author got the information that a computer support specialist does not require a degree, because I went to college for computer systems and any kind of work in the IT field requires a college degree and some of the certifications come in handy depending on what type of work you are doing. You must have good knowledge of servers, networking systems, etc. Someone with no training could not do this work or deal with its daily stress, especially when a lot of responsibility is riding on your back.
    People like to write a bunch a crap and haven’t done the job for one day…

  16. there’s a lot money in garbage

  17. abedallatif

    i want to know what type of job that to suite me with you people.
    i am doctor graduate frtom very good college, but some people is behind me in the feild of the job so i can t find good seat for me in my country . i can travell and work any job that suite me because i want to support my self.

  18. michel bodden

    please e-mail a copy to me.

  19. Julianne, the author is correct. A degree is not required to be a computer support specialist, however I agree that most people wouldn’t be able to succeed in IT without at least some college, or at least IT training. I work in IT even though I have an associates degree in a completely different field. Many of my coworkers are highly motivated and intelligent individuals without a college degree and they do very well. You have to remember that there are quite a few people in the world who posses very high intelligence, good work ethic, and self-motivation who did not attend college for four years.

    • sharedsecrets

      Absolutely correct, Dave! The point being some people are talented in some areas, while at the same time lacking “common sense” and others who lack in knowledge of one field exceed astonishly at another occupation which GENERALLY requires skill, knowledge and extensive education. Some may not believe it, but I actually do, and know this to be a fact. Take Drs of old, what was their ACTUAL education level and btw WHO TAUGHT THEM and how did THEY learn??? BY trial, error !! I have a cousin who plays the piano so beautifully! Years and years of piano lessons, practicing daily never behooved her , however. EVERY NOTE she plays is completely by ear!!
      Get what I’m trying to convey?

  20. That is true about not needing a degree for the Nuclear Operators and Technicians. But I think the payscale is wrong. I am a insturmentation tech at a nuclear power plant and by the time I reach max pay I will be making 75,000. That will be in 3 more years. The operators make about 90,000 at the plant. That does not include all the overtime with refuelings. After all the overtime 100,000 a year is very achievable.

  21. John Whitman

    I think the best job that does not need a college degree is a hotel sales or catering manager. I earned an entry level salary of 45 thousand and bonus and made more than 77 thousand after just two years.

    I plan to get to the Director of Sales Positon (no degree required) in about 2 more years and should earn 100 thousand or more plus bonus…..now that’s a good salary without a college degree. I was gong to a marketing class at a JC but found an easier way to get a start with a on-line certificate from aprinda.com

    The aprinda.com was on-line and only took me about 20 hours to complete.

    I would think hotel sales jobs should rank right up in the top two jobs for those people that don’t have a degree.

    • Exactly what types of hotel sales jobs do you recommend that pay as high as you mentioned (entry level 45K)?

  22. Jeremiah

    Anyone know how to get into air traffic control?

    • Join the Air Force – Get the best training and experience for free, not to mention bonuses and other benefits. Then when you get out you’ll basically be guaranteed a job as an Air Traffic Controller as a civilian.

  23. You missed yacht crew. Positions vary, but captains can make well into six figures, chef/cooks can make close to six figures, and chief stewardesses/ first mates can make up to 60-80 k. American stewardesses are in particularly high demand.

  24. Computer specialist is quite misleading indeed. I am what some people would call a computer specialist and at the end of the day, you will pay for a college degree by the time you obtain all of the certifications necessary to keep your career afloat. I have a Masters in Information Technology and that didn’t stop me from being laid off. During an economic downturn like the one we’re facing now, a degree is a hindrance to getting just any old job because they think you are going to try to get paid more than they are offering. Because technology and computers change so often, education is an ONGOING effort. There will always be something new to learn and if you are not working for a company that will pay for that education, you will be hemoraging money left and right for the certifications. I am looking to change careers because you really don’t get paid that much to keep spending $5,000 here and there for certification courses.

  25. FYI: Unless things have changed since 1995, you do not need a degree to become a dental hygenist. But this entire post is misleading. Although you may not need a degree you do have to be certified for most of these jobs. If you don’t go to college for a degree you still need to take some sort of classes. Which are usually accelerated, overpriced vocational courses and you usually pay out of pocket. Even if you do qualify for some sort of aid it won’t cover everything because the classes are usually so expensive. So you still come out of pocket. You only come out with a ‘certificate’ of completion for that particular job or take a test to become certified in that field. And if you leave that job field, what can that certificate do for you except look good on a resume. And while you may not need a degree, most employers I know require at least an associates degree, in any field, before they will consider hiring you for any job. I’d rather go to college but, different strokes for different folks.

    • I think you are confusing this job (dental hygiene) with being a dental assistant. No degree is required for that. A hygienist requires no less than an Associates degree, you must pass a national , regional and sometimes a state board for a license. I have been a hygienist for 25 years, not easy degree by any means!

    • You are confusing this with a dental assistant, which requires no degree. A dental hygienist must have a minimum of an associates degree, just FYI!

  26. I agree with all the people who say this list is misleading. Some of these jobs require associate’s degrees and associates are degrees as well. And for the record, many dental hygienists have bachelors degrees.

  27. Well, I worked in IT for 11 years in Canada with only a 2 year technical college programmer certificate… That was until 2002 when dot com collapsed. Trying to find work again was near impossible, because with all that and the huge influx of programmers in I.T from other countries — They began more and more to ask for university degrees. I have worked with others who where self taught programmers, making the same salary. I agree that some health field or regularte fields should require degrees for obvious reasons, but I also think that many employers today for fields like I.T, sales, marketing etc… should rely more on the persons ability to learn and aptitude, then a university degree…But we all know how today they dont look/scan past the resume text, and that is an issue all in itself!

  28. bristolfarmer

    Money is the wrong reason to go after any career. I deliver gasoline for a living and make btwn 60 and 80k and I work a really odd shift that compromises time with family and quality of life. Before anyone looks into any of these high paying , no degree needing fields, do your research and find out what’s required of you first. The need to earn money will always exist whether you earn a degree or not. Be certain that you and your loved ones can live with the conditions of the career path you choose. P.S., I do not have a college degree.

  29. i work at a small warehouse making over seventy a year easy that is with taking a bit of over time, but with thoes other carreers you mite have to add in retairement or heath insurance or things such as that meaning warehouse inployees or making way more than you think they are

  30. martin jones

    i agree and disagree with much of the dialogue here, and some is just plain silly and uninformative pap. as for college degrees and advanced higher education, they have their place. to be sure, you cannot be a doctor, lawyer, engineer, scholar or resarcher without a degree, and preferably from a prestigious institution. moreover, if you’re looking to better your skills at reading, writing and critical thinking, a higher education is a worthwhile pursuit and a true gift for those who can avail themselves to it. that aside, most jobs do not require degrees. they require basic intelligence, various skills, common sense and the ability to get on fairly well with others. networking, schmoozing and knowing the ‘right’ kinds of people never hurt either. this is especially true in areas of sales. many other types of work, such as graphic or web design, require creativity and an artistic sense. most jobs can be learned either on the job or with preliminary training and practicum. many computer people i know never pursued a degree in IT. they learned it on their own, from books, websites, following others or getting a lucky break at work. as for hedge fund traders, yes, some are high school dropouts. but you have to be a gambler and have nerves of steel for that kind of highly speculative work. i am a big advocate of trade schools. you want to be a plumber or electrician, a specialized school or union should teach you, and then you should apprentice for a year or two. the ancient guild system was a worthwhile institution. if you want to learn to repair engines or be a mechanic, go to a trade school for that. most sales jobs require a certain height, weight, build, well-groomed appearance and the gift of gab. you can’t read books on how to influence people, though many have been written. again, college has its place, but as with any enterprise, it has its limitations as well and is not the silver bullet to success. university should be a choice for those seeking to pursue intellectual disciplines and the higher mental life. it’s too bad that it has become little more than a factory for cranking out people to do jobs that they could better learn from training and apprenticeship.

  31. Daffy Duck

    Duh, you even have to have a degree pretty much to work at Mc Donalds, burning burgers and over salting the fries. It’s hard to find a good paying job that doesn’t require a degree!

  32. Hmm. About 10-15 years ago, it was predicted by “experts” that (at least in Canada), 2/3 of all new “career” jobs would require a degree higher than a Bachelor’s — mostly a Master’s. But in a country like the U.S., with a much larger economy, it’s understandable that there could be so many jobs that don’t require a degree and pay over $40K. However, it depends on where you live. $60K in, say, San Francisco, doesn’t get you the same lifestyle as in other parts of the U.S.

  33. ATC jobs do not require a degree, its true. BUT, It definatly helps. I was in a similar field when i was in the Air Force and had plenty of experience, After a grueling 18 MONTH application process and almost perfect qualification test score, someone else was still selected for the position in front of me! If you plan on applying for an ATC spot, be prepared (as the government saying goes) to “hurry up and wait!” Good Luck!

  34. Air Traffic Control shouldn’t be on the list just for the fact that money hungry/lazy people that don’t want to go to college will really try to pursue this as a career. ATC isn’t a joke, u have more peoples live in the palm of your hand than the actual pilots do.

  35. Having felt the frustration and rejection of being told, “Sorry but as much as we would like to , we can’t hire you because despite your extensive management and sales experience we can’t offer you a position with our company.” This along with encouragement from my wife compelled me to obtain my CIS degree. It was later confirmed by a friend who works as an HR manager that ,in some companies, in order to mitigate the possibility of legal damages incurred via litigation , they have a mandate that prospective employees can’t even interview for certain positions without having a verifiable degree from an accredited college or university. One reason is that if a careless or incompetent employee mishandles a clients account or gives them improper advice resulting in a financial loss the employer can be held liable if they didn’t exercise reasonable care and “Due Diligence” in their hiring process.

  36. I think that a college degree will always be a useful tool, especially in this economy…
    For example, firefighting, which is under the list of not needing a bachelor´s…I live in California and am looking into jobs for my boyfriend who does not have a college degree. Though the job does not have a 4 year degree pre-requisite officially in type…it is nearly impossible (at least in California) to be hired by a Fire Department if you do not have at least an Associate´s degree in Fire Science.

    The truth of the matter is now there are so many people searching for jobs so the pool of applicants is very competitive. If the choice is between 2 potential firefighters who have all the same qualifications, certifications, but one has a degree and the other no, the one with the degree will be chosen…

    In times of economic stability a 4 year degree may not be as necessary as it is in times of crisis and competition…

    Doing a quick search on job search engine sites it´s true that there are jobs out there that don´t put a degree as a pre-requisite…but I´m guessing the person who is actually hired does have the degree…even if that may make them overqualified.

    So I guess I´m saying the importance of a 4 year degree depends on the economy…bad economy…degree more important than in a good economy…

  37. Cindy

    #20 – nuclear medicine techologist – i hate to tell the author of this blog but you are required by Federal guidelines to be accredited, certified and registered to obtain a job. If you can do it without getting some kind of certificate without formal education than you have pulled a rabbit out of a hat. I work for a hospital and the minimum education they require is a 2 yr certificate and a State registration. Many employers and an increasing number of States require certification or licensure.

    #18 – Dental hygienist – they are now required to have at least an Associate’s degree before they can even take a State exam.

    Writer needs to recheck his facts.

  38. Rayssen

    Im gonna do some research about most of these jobs cause I get out if the navy soon and I’m undecided about what I wanna do buy I really rather not go back to doing stuff with air planes anymore air traffic control really ain’t that great unless your incharge other wise it pretty much sucks by u can’t say how it is for civilians .

  39. Rayssen

    Im gonna do some research about most of these jobs cause I get out if the navy soon and I’m undecided about what I wanna do buy I really rather not go back to doing stuff with air planes anymore air traffic control really ain’t that great unless your incharge other wise it pretty much sucks by u can’t say how it is for civilians . So hoping these jobs are true to wat he is saying about them .

  40. Baggs

    Listen here, I have no degree and no high school education. ( I had a child in high school and had to work immediately to support him.) The fact of the matter is, my IQ is higher then most people and I can’t get a job that pays squat. I had one job that paid $30/ hour, but the cost of this job was losing all feeling in my hands and arms within three years. I have been passed over time and time again for promotions due to my lack of degree. Even people who can’t spell or count are making more than me due to having a degree. So for all you wishful thinking young people who want to rebel, GO TO SCHOOL.

  41. Brenda

    Isn’t the point of going to college to learn new things, experience a wealth of knowledge that wouldn’t be available to us otherwise!? I thought college was a place where you discover your interests and talents and utilize the resources to help you to accomplish your goals? But what do I know!! I’m just Reading this like the rest of you. I went to college because it helped me figure out what I wanted to do with my life to better myself. If you know what you want to do with the rest of your life … Do it!! If not I recommend college, it will help put things in perspective and give you time to decide for yourself what you enjoy. If not make a hasty decisions like going to trade schools that teach you a skill.

  42. But everyone does not have the MONEY to play around in college while they figure out what they want to do in life. If your going to spend all that money on college you might as well go for a medical degree….atleast then you will see an actual return on your money. College is for rich people and future doctors. How about for those people who havent been to college yet and already have working experience….work for yourself! You have the skill and the experience, why not work for yourself.

  43. Kyle McShane

    I have been helping some friends that did not attend college in their job hunting process. This article helped me out. I also was reading this article (http://blog.dreamfetcher.com/Jobs_without_Four_Year_Degrees). It gave a lot of good information.

  44. I wanted info if anyone knew about furthering education without paying for. I know that there are grants but the ones that I have seen you have to pay a fee for information, which I am not trying to do. If it is free you should not have to pay for. Also wanted to be emailed places that are hiring cooks and caterers in the state of new jersey. As for website my husband and I are both distributors with. If you or if you know anyone who wants to have own business and keep 9-5 and improve their health the natural way to contact by email address provided and when emailing to put to attention Mike and Rietta. thanks

  45. To be honest, I’ve always thought that studying for a degree because you wanted a highly paid job was a pretty poor idea. I did it because I loved my subject and because I wanted to know more about it. Graduate jobs can pay higher salaries but you often still have to work up to that.

    A degree isn’t for everyone, which is not to say that those who lack a degree lack intelligence.

  46. Gennaro

    I wouldn’t know what a degree is. I ‘ve been working since the age of 10, and never could afford to go to college. I am now 45 years old with nothing accomplished, having low paying jobs without benefits, with little or no raises, which these breed of employers do constantly take advantage! I am a honest, conscientious , perceptive, and intelligent. I do not understand by having such a great work ethic, that I ended up being a working class Bum!

    • Gennaro,
      I know this posting comes a bit late to the party…but let me tell you…YOU HAVE ACCOMPLISHED SOMETHING…you worked since the age of 10 and though you may have low paying jobs, without benefits, at least from a monetary standpoint, you have worked harder than some who do go to college. You’re not a Bum either…you work, remember and you haven’t given up…that’s a PLUS! I feel your pain and I will pray for you.

  47. jessica

    Depends what you can find, Thats paying well and doesnt need to much to get, You have to realize that jobs like that are not for everyone, & everyone doesnt get lucky enough for that. duh.

  48. Summer

    Just to clarify, a person DOES need a degree to work as a dental hygienist in every state except Alabama. Why would you trust someone to clean your teeth with sharp instruments, among other things, if they hadn’t some real time and experience invested in learning how?

  49. drivers

    Hotel sales and catering managers never get listed even though every hotel employs 1-7 or more sales and catering professionals. These jobs start at 40-60K plus bonus and advance rapidly. You can travel, work in great surroundings, enjoy great food, meet lots of people every day, and advance rapidly in terms of salary. Personally, I oversaw 12 hotels in 5 years and earned over 100K plus bonus. I recommend this career to anyone that has a good head on their shoulders and has a professional image.

    Or even take a course at a local college. You don’t need a college degree to advance to the often highly paid General Manager position (75-200K per year)…..and lots of added perks

  50. I work in real estate – had a degree in ministry from a non-accredited “school of ministry” and I have been in real estate and met many very successful Brokers who either had no higher education, or had degrees completely irrelevant to their current careers. No matter how bad the economy – people will be buying and selling homes on some level. I think this is a really open field for people who are self-motivated and relationship oriented. O yea, and you do have to be with a company that is good and that will offer ongoing training….this is my education, and I can see myself doing it til the day I day…no matter where I live!

  51. having a degree is one thing, working your way up the lader is another. a degree is an investment that should start you somewhere in the middle of things and work yr way to the top. however, thatis not always the case. i have a degree, never got an opportunity to work in the field but because i had it i was able to advance to management level. it depends on where you live and the economy. it’s sad to note that there are still many people who have inveested thousands of dollars earning a degree and they have been jobless or underemployed for a very longg time, strugling to pay their student loans.

  52. Just to point out to the above people: this article is NOT titled “no college degree required jobs” it says in the title “no four year degree” AA’s and creditadations are NOT four year degrees unless you’re lazy and take four year to finish.

  53. I have a 2 year degree. I have had so much trouble getting a god paying job. I am a very hard worker. I did catering sales for 13.00 a hour. I am 40. That is the highest paying job I have had. Most catering jobs do want a degree in hospitality. Sales? yes even at the wireless sales store they want a degree. A lot for stores in the mall for management want a degree. I have also been passed by for lack of education. My 2 year degree is a field that is declining. I am forcing my child to go to school. She is 18 she has no choice. All my friends who finished their degree is doing very well. I find most people in a lot of these fields have degrees and have made a switch in careers. Example real estate. Also I do see that a lot of people who go to school are better readers and writers.

  54. I agree@bamboo. I have always been curious about that field, and I have seen ads in the paper, asking for people who are interested in it, but I thought you had to have some sort of degree to get into it. Great article. If nothing else, it gives me a place to start :-).

  55. Been there, done that

    You don’t need a degree to be a realtor, but intelligence goes without saying, and there is huge money to be made for a diligent prudent person. You don’t have a life, except when no one is after you…but….if money is your goal and you can attract and deliver for buyers and sellers, you can make several hundred thousand a year! Education isn’t necessarily acquired in the classroom either…the technical aspect of any occupation is a given, but beyond that, it is all about hard work, good ethics, and continuous study.

  56. I love reading comments on educated situations. Some people need to attend High School before they are allowed to post anything on anything. Before you can tell me or anyone else how you feel, please learn how to spell, punctuate, and make sense for that matter! This may be the reason you don’t have a job and are living off of the taxes I pay. Good luck with your endeavourers.

    • Natasha

      before you cast stones, you may want to spell check and grammar check your own post. “High school” is not capitalized unless you are referring to a specific one, such as Millard High School. Also you spelled endeavors completely wrong. “Endeavourers” does not make sense. Assuming you are British or Canadian and meant to add the “u”, there is never an “er” on the end. “Educated situations” does not make sense either, for that matter.

      Also, your logic is in error. You make a general assumption that people replying to this article are unemployed and/or living off your taxes. Are you referring to the Navy sailor’s post with spelling errors? He is certainly employed to protect your freedom to post your opinion, but I suppose you could say he’s living off your taxes since he’s employed by the government, which is totally funded by general taxes. Your assumption omits the probability that some readers may be seeking a career change from their jobs, others may be graduating high school. In the latter case, they are probably living off their parents, not welfare. Furthermore, most people who are unemployed live on unemployment benefits, not welfare, because they have recently been employed. Half comes from the taxes they as individuals pay in, not the general population, and half from their employer.

      Looking for a living wage in this economy and overcoming whatever obstacles one may have is difficult enough without having to deflect judgmental or critical comments. Give ’em a break. At least they’re trying to improve their situations, even if they can’t spell like the majority of Americans. I blame Spellcheck.

  57. top jobs without a degree
    Try a hospitality job.

    If your young, and just out of high school, start at the front desk and earn 8-14 and hour. After a few years you can obtain a managment position. The range is vast 35-100K or more. It depends on the size of the hotel and location. Many advance to General Manager jobs and earn 75 thousand to 150 thousand or more per year. It happens all of the time. My friend started as a secretary and now earns 150 thousand at a hotel in SF at Fishermans Wharf.

    Another way to get started in hospitality is the sales and catering department. You can get entry level jobs at 40-60K plus bonus. These jobs also can lead to the Director of Sales or the General Manager job. I know of hundreds of people that got started this way. Get an inexpensive hotel sales certificate at ecornell.com or aprinda.com

    Hospitality is a great career, it’s a top job for 2010, and will be way into the future. I believe hospitality is the second or third largest employer in the world.

    • Daniel HIdalgo

      Wow this has been very help, thank you to everyone that have posted their positive and negative comments in here. I am Daniel my education is very limited 10th grade is as far as I went due to being the oldest male in a family of four with a single mom. I discovered in Alabama that I was born to be a people person a local news paper offered me a job making 100.00 per week and 15% commission and it was terrible, I quickly realize in a matter of a month that I could do it on my own I simply needed a designer and I came up with my own Birmingham magazine where I advertise local companies and posted local free jobs for them i got toped out at clearing about 8,000 per month, shortly after I started buying little cheap houses fixing minor things and reselling them I was on top of my game sold my magazine invested that money on another house at age 26 I had 7 houses I have never in my life made so much money and it hit me I had never had money to offer my mother who fought three jobs to feed us so I bought here and my family plane tickets on a vacation before I knew it we had spent 30k I was ignorant with what do with so much money. When I got back I sold two house shortly after I made 60k on one and 55k on the other I put all my earned money and decided to build me a future for me and my boys and spent all my money buy more houses, soon after the market just dropped and now I’m thirty years old stuck with properties that I dint know when they will sell.

      I share my story because these are two subjects that have been mentioned on this topic, I am a self motivated person with 2-3 months into my 10th grade in high school I can never be proud to tell my boys but for everyone out there this one time I can say it, if a latin gang affiliated did it everyone can, I come from Santa Ana, california ran away from their to get out of gangs and man up to help my mother I have felt success in the sales and real state but the truth is that you will not ever make it if you don’t love it in your heart or have a drive for it.

      I came in here to thank everyone for their tips because I want to find a company where my sales drive can grow in a company but until then I’ll be opening soon a used tire shop in panama city Florida called Quick Stop I will be out generating sales accounts like dealers and spreading the word to the local companies, please excuse my spelling for which I should go back to school but life comes pretty fast I don’t know if I can any more, but thanks to all of you I will be submitting resumes at hotels and maybe land a job with benefits and making a good income while running my little shack.

      Daniel hidalgo

  58. These are all great ideas for young adults out there. However, if you are mid to late 30’s, or even 40’s, there are age limits on some of these jobs. Typically, no older than 30. I wish I had known more about these fields when I was much younger.

  59. what about recently graduated high school students? The economy is so crappy these days, its hard for us to even get a job at a fast food joint.

  60. i’ve heard that in US, you get unemployment benefit, as long as you don’t make certain amount of money.

  61. ohno… tell that to the poor and homeless.. especially over hear in detriot and wayne..mi

  62. You do need a degree to be a dental hygienist, thats what Im majoring in now

  63. joseph piatt

    im 17 and trying to find out some stuff about good jobs for when i get out of high school, i dont plan on going to college but dont really want to end up like my father and be 53 years old and still working a full time job just to get by. and the way the economy is going i dont no what filed of work to get into. so if any one has some advice let me know

  64. Take a tip from a 50 year old without a degree. Get your degree!

  65. It is true that degree is not obvious for earning money. A car cleaner whom I ve seen earns 80000 per annum and tax free. At the same time degree is also important for many. All this is about finding your own ways to earn money and respect in the society. Many business men in the world like Apple Jobs, bill gates, were the college drop outs. All we need is an aim and a good planning to succeed. Money comes on its own way.

  66. So, I went and got my BS degree in Business Management, back 5 years ago, and the only thing it got me was qualified to work on projects that come around every now and then. Having the degree did NOT advance my pay when I got management positions either. I am now thinking to go back and get a new certification in a field that will always be in demand, or so they say…..at the time I was getting my Bus degree, I was told my degree would be highly needed, but so far the economy is proving this wrong. Best of luck to us all out there. I’ll believe my degree means something when the economy proves it. BTW, My mother didn’t have a college degree and she was able to become her own boss over and over again and manage…..education is grand, but the proof is in the paycheck or cash flow coming in more than those accounts payables going out…..

  67. I myself am a self taught I.T. Administrator and Application/Database Developer who earned several certifications in the field, spent many years working with upper management reading books that target my challenges and putting things into practice while learning new techniques that have been very successful and have built a portfolio over time, which college heads were not able to do. In our try before you hire session, at my company we ended up getting rid of a few college grads because their knowledge was so far behind and seem to be spoiled. I think experience and character overrides College by far, remember in college courses you just read a little try to memorize till test time pick and choose teachers who most of time has spent little time, if any, in the field they are teaching. What is the difference between this and jumping on Google and reading the latest information about a subject, then putting it into practice. People that hire based on degrees are just selfishly looking out for themselves, because perhaps they have a degree, and end up hurting themselves and their company by passing up someone with more knowledge, certifications, character and experience, remember results is why you hire, not because you might have read something in a outdated textbook. That being said, I am working on a degree although as I take the classes it is confirming what I feel to be true.


    I love how so many of these comments are incorrectly spelled, etc. Too funny, and from people with college degrees, based on their comments.

  69. I have an awesome job! 75,000 a year. No degree. Medical Sales.

    • Hi Amanda, Could you talk more about your experience please? For example: How you found the job? What the requirements are? Thank you.

    • Good stuff. Kudos. Would you share the information wealth of who I could contact for work too? Thank You.

  70. I don’t think this is misleading. The author did state that some of the jobs would require a college degree. a 2 year college degree is an Associates degree. I have one in Business but yet still make my living as a freelance writer(writing about mostly business of course, lol)

    I am nowhere near $65k or higher but find that I have the ability to be when I can work full time(since a 20 hour week nets me about $30k a year now) I grew up in a family with a dad who was a teacher and a mom who was a librarian so we were always studying something or other. I have to admit, since I have been online making money(2003 start), I have learned more through self study than my college degree ever gave me.

    Always keep pursuing knowledge and you will be able to go anywhere you want to get(well along with hard work and other traits)

  71. amanda,

    what kind of medical sales do you do & what does that entail ?

  72. Congratulations Amanda !

  73. 95% of job postings on monster.com require some kind of degree.
    Regarding hotel sales jobs, you need previous experience (at least 2 years) to start at a 40k job, check career builder.
    Technical jobs are the way to go for high paying non degree jobs but most are for the male population – I do not want to be a firefighter or an automobile mechanic or a plumber.
    As for as starting your own business, that would be ideal for alot of non-degree people but what bank will give someone a loan in these economic times. Especially for someone who has been out of work for over a year.

  74. P. Oneil

    In regards to the debate on whether you need a degree or not: I have a day job but it only earns so much and doesn’t offer much room for advancement. It’s a job that I’ve let myself become comfortable in and never thought I’d need to advanced, but I’ve been got a new girlfriend for almost a year now and we are getting serious. I realize that soon I will need to provide for her and a future family and I’m seeing the need to go back to school. I’m a bit reluctant because i hated high school but it’s necessary for me to get at least an associates degree. I don’t have natural talent or the skills and personality to work for myself or be an entrepreneur, therefore I NEED a degree otherwise I will regret it later in life. If you’re in a similar situation as me, don’t follow this article… a degree can only better your options and outcome!

  75. I’m getting my degree right now solely to satisfy false beliefs, yes I am picking up information along the way, but could have just as well Google the same info from reputable sources and it would have been a lot cheaper :) I’m doing very well at my job now, however I do get challenged by people all the time when they find out all I have is some college. I usually win in the end by my results(my certs helped too targeted proficiency), but this is stressful for me. This is the information age you can learn about anything without having to shell out cash to the school business. Putting things into practice and building on your knowledge overtime you learn things no school will ever be able to teach.

  76. Dental Hygienist Jessie

    I just want to let you know a little bit more about Dental Hygiene as an option. It is at minimum a three year degree and not an easy one. After doing your year of prereq classes you have to compete to get in. In my program they took 24 applicants out of 450. After you get in you have to fight to stay in. Out of 24 of us 4 failed to keep the above 73 grade in every class. Were talking all heavy duty science classes…. think you can memorize ever tiny nuance of nerves and cells in the mouth? theres a lot more going on in the mouth then I woulda thought in my wildest dreams. You have to take an insane amount of clinical classes on top of your science classes and even have to give and receive novacaine injections from your classmates. After you make it through all that you have to take a thousand dollar clinical exam, a couple hundred dollar written exam that tests everything you have learned in 3 years, a state law of dentistry exam aaannnd an exam on giving injections… this is not a good path for someone looking to skimp on a degree and make a good living… While in the program I saw people’s marriages fail because of the stress, and grown women and men break down crying.. just saying

  77. I see most of the people in here are from the U.S. You people are really lucky, i mean people earning 40k+ per year without a degree. I am a graduate from a third world country and not earning a penny yet. Anyone with a job in my country is considered to be blessed even the ones with the master degrees, with the pay that i can’t even mention in your currency.
    It does depend where you live in the world and believe me people you live in a good part of the world

  78. Well Farhaj, even here in America we have people with masters degrees and no job. My sister has a masters and has been unable to find work for a year. Another sister has her BS in something, can’t remember what right now, and no job for almost 2 years. I myself only took 1 semester and was bored out of my mind. I recently lost my job due to the economy, but previously had worked for 15 years straight starting at about 35k and working up to 65k in the low-voltage industry. If I so choose, I can take a few training classes with a manufacture and be an independent programmer making 100k a year easy.

    I have been a firm believer in the fact that college teaches you how to work for someone else for the rest of your life, and make them rich. Even friends of mine that have taken several entrepreneur type courses have said that in the end the course still leaned more on the “working for someone else” side of things. Basically you just need to decided what it is YOU want to do in life and figure out what is needed for you to do that. It might be college, it might be a trade school, or it might just be self training.

    On a side note. I also found it funny that many of the posts from people claiming to have a degree, seem to be the worst posts. The posts had very poor sentence structure, grammar, spelling and punctuation. Just a tip to all of you out there. When typing out anything on a computer, you should put 2 spaces after a “.” before starting your next sentence.

  79. I would really be interested in knowing where they came up with a salary for the funeral director I don’t know of any director that makes this!

  80. The linked document for :

    Click To read the rest of the 25 top paying jobs without a college degree.

    In this article isn’t working, Bob. It says “article not found.” Thought you might need to know.

  81. SusanCGK

    I have really enjoyed finding the site. Although it is nice to have a formal education. There are many factors involved in deciding what you want to do with your life. I think it all boils down to what kind of fulfillment you want from your work or if you want any at all. There are massive amounts of people that live being told what to do,and how to do it. They don’t really enjoy having to put alot of thought into a CAREER. Most of those people end up in a factory type inviroment. Or something very regimentaed with out alot of choices. It seems like our goverment depend on those people the most. They Know how much to expect in taxes. They Know how to win there vote so on and so fourth. LIke most of the things in our life. If you stop and think about it, or ask someone why they like something or do something…THEY DON”T KNOW. But you know as well as I do….TV, Bill boards, Radio, they have be progamed with out realizing to be who they are.WELL or who they think they are. ITS kinda sad, I have lived around that my whole life. NEEDED and have looked for a mentour. To show me how to live another way. I am still searching.. I know I want more. I would not be living to my potintial if I settle. At this point seems the odds are against me…..PRAY FOR ME and those that are trying to break out of the generational curse .

  82. you just have to work your way up in the world…I had nothing grew up poor… was homeless a few differerent times.. all it did was motivate me now i make over 70k a year at age 22 WITH NO COLLEGE… im not smart by any means u just have to work hard to get where you wanna be!

  83. I like coming to back to the post every once in awhile, my third comment yeah. I must say I have done well over the past decade without a degree. As far as working hard not totally true. If you want to excel it’s good to put in more time in whatever craft you choose then the average person, working smarter not harder helps. Just make sure whatever your doing your growing, even if it’s in a small way, believe me it will add up over time. Learn new skills wherever you can, via school, a job or asking key questions to friends, family & strangers with this, your value and insight will grow and you will become more valuable to society and yourself, thereby increasing your earning power.

    To solve a problem plan B is to consistently and relentlessly hit it from all angles it will eventually be solved, after all our Father created the universe We should at least be able to get a job that gives a decent quality of life. I for one consider this to be the bottom for me and will always go after more stopping every so often to chill and want what I already have.

  84. upser

    Very true, UPS where I work gives all employees amazing benefits that compare with the military. Not to mention drivers make anywhere from 60,000-90,000 per year.

  85. I don’t have a four year degree but God has provided for me and my family. Single income family of six. My income is 70k on the low end and 100k with OT. Others that I work with are 100K + on the higher end. Grade 1 Boiler Operator in the Seattle, WA area.

  86. There was time when a degree was not necessary or needed by these employers, but not anymore. They have all jumped on the degree bandwagon, especially in Florida. Take a look at the requirements for simple accounting tasks; such as an AP clerk and you will see many asking for a degree; and you’ll be lucky if you can get $10 an hour.

  87. IT Guru

    We ended up laying off a few folks with a college degree, because they were just not that good. We ended keeping a guy that almost finished an associates mainly because of his experience and character to do the job right. I have been in Florida for 18 years in a working capacity. When going on an interview, come with all you got, but don’t be discouraged if you don’t have a degree, but have the drive and the background. I am presently working on a degree because it does add value and my current company culture will probably look at it more if I want to break into the ranks of top management. Hint…….. looking at the job postings in my company over the years they listed a degree, but half were filled by persons with a degree the half by people without. Both sides turned out the same with a bad and good apples on the college side and the experience, character side.

  88. I have 5 kids so far. My dh makes between $25-35K a year at a grocery store. That is our only income. Sometimes he gets his hours cut so he only works 3-4 days a week during certain times of the year. In the early days he used to have 2-3 fast food jobs to get all the hours he needed at $6 or less an hour. We have never gone hungry and when he gets his ours cut we are glad we have more time as a family. We live simply and without debt. Only $50K left to pay on the house..no others. We have internet, cel phones, we go camping, etc. In fact many times we discover that we have more AVAILABLE money and time than those we know who have fancy stuff and higher paying jobs. We are able to be flexible whereas those who have a high ‘standard of living’ crash and burn just because they get a day cut from work and usually they even have husband and wife both working. IMO it is worth it to NOT be part of the rat race. We are content and happy. We have some nice things that we pay cash for but we don’t feel the need to buy everything under the sun. We have no food stamps either. We don’t live in a dump. The Lord has provided and taught us how to use our money wisely. Dh has only a high school diploma and I stay at home. Bottom line is, enjoy life not ‘things’ and stay out of debt (we used to have many many creditors in the early years because it was cool and dug our way out of it never to go back). If you avoid debt and save money and add things (bigger house etc) to your life gradually you won’t have any trouble. Get with Dave Ramsey and take his advice. And stop putting so much of yourself into vehicles and car loans. We never pay more then $5k for a vehicle and always pay in cash. It means our vehicles don’t depreciate as much and we usually get almost the same when we sell them as when we bought them. My 2 cents. It has worked for us and I love my life and family time.

  89. Dave M

    Both my sons work at large grocery chains, different companies. They are a few years out of HS. They both say they work with many who have BS degrees and cannot get a job anywhere else. They have huge educational debt and nothing to show for it. I saw it when I was young as well, but not to this extent. It takes the sheen off a higher education when you can’t get a job with a degree and illegals get preferred treatment and financial aid much easier than US citizens to top it off.

  90. Vinnie Kaz

    This was very informative to me. I’m in the middle of a 2-year program now, and was planning on continuing with, at minimum, a Master’s degree. Knowing that the job market is that fluctuant, I may just begin to look for suitable employment a little earlier. I can always continue my education at a part time pace, while earning money – possibly with a tuition assisting employer, and continue progress without pouring too much into loan repayments later. I drove truck for several years and can’t say that the money was bad at all. I’m also an active musician. I love to learn and keep busy while I’m at it. Thank you Mr. Lotich. Your research has been a great help to me today.

  91. mommab

    You forgot to mention Union jobs…..my DH has no college degree, and makes $80k as a Union Tin Knocker. He had to pass a written test (mostly math related) and once he was accepted into the program, the Union provided him with 5 years of training (2 nights/wk, 6 mos/yr) while keeping him employed in the field, immediate health insurance, and regular pay increases. There are many entry level, good paying jobs if people aren’t afraid of physical labor.

  92. Pls send a copy of the latest IT jobs that pay in the job market.

  93. im now 25 and my whole life i been working two to three jobs min , and I never knew you could make that money know i know im going for it ,,, i never made over 20k with one job my whole life .. shoot id love a decent paying job i dont care how hard the work is at long the money right

  94. Curtis Hielema

    You forgot commission sales for major appliances, furniture and cars. I have one of these jobs, and make around 50k a year at age 25 with only a college certificate in an unrelated field.

  95. Education is not getting worse. I work in a great public education facility in the South and we are doing a great job of educating our young people. The problem lies in the amount of work that does not involve teaching that teachers have to complete on a daily basis so that school systems look good on paper. When our teachers are allowed to teach and hold students accountable for their work students learn. Unfortunately teachers are blamed when parents fail to enforce the importance of school at home, or undermine the teacher’s authority in the name of being their child’s friend instead of their parent.

  96. im a future vet, but i rly dont know if that NEEDS a degreee cuz my friend got in without one, but the other vets say you need a certificate

  97. I find this article encouraging. However, I have spent the last 8 years working as a self employed hairstylist while studying towards my Bachelor degree in Business Administration with a concentration on Entrepreneurship. (Sounds like I’m going in a bit of a circle doesn’t it). Well I am currently less than a year away from my degree. Super excited. I read another article “legitimate ways to make money from home” after looking over the sites it seems you have to have degrees and professional experience in the writing field. Does anyone know of other ways to make legitimate money from home (without an official 4 year degree)? Besides for selling things on sites like eBay or etsy.com.

  98. Becoming a funeral director will be the death of me.

  99. I already do the real estate-actually own the company. For those of use willing to adjust to the times, the money is still good. But…I also have a fully working farm with pigs, cow, chickens, ducks, and bulls for meat. The garden is larger than most city lots. I spend less than $50/month for food(flour, sugar, etc). The farm makes the real estate possible. You don’t need a lot of money if you reevaluate where you spend it.

  100. Andy McGuire

    NO WAY! I’m a funeral director and I can asure you that a funeral director does not make 80k a year unless they own there own funeral home. I make between 55k and 60k year with a lot of extra time working.

  101. I have no college degree and have worked as an automotive technician since I graduated high school, I have 32 years in the trade and can tell you this, get a college education! The physical labor itself literally wears your joints away, the technical problems and fault tracing be it electrical or mechanical are brutal every day. It is an odd thing in that the more you know the less you make, the people who make the money are the ones that replace parts and do services. The specialist who trouble shoots your check engine light or weird electrical problem loses there shirt and these are the folks with the real knowledge, add to this the money you spend on tools…very common to spend 50-75k just on tools! When the trade is done with you have fun trying to sell your transferable skills outside of the automotive business, your body is spent and you education does not look good on a resume!

  102. This post is very inspiring thanks. It was after reading the Christianpf post on how to blog that I decided to start a side business as a blogger. I’m now 9 weeks in. I’m averaging about 0.18 per day, which is, I guess, about right for where I am.

    I really owe you a big thanks for point me in the right direction. Thanks!!!

    Joel, author

  103. Suzie

    Our forefathers did not have degrees when they came to this land, so we know that grit and determination can take you a long way. Although I will agree that education is a good thing…there are other ways to be trained for a job other than college. With manufactoring jobs starting to return to the U.S. maybe the trend of coming out of college with thousands of dollars of debt is reversing. Our mothers and fathers did okay in the manufacturing jobs. Not everyone is cut out for college or desires to go to college. My sons, are taking over thier fathers vineyard and cattle operation. I would have loved to seen them get at least a community college education, but that is not the path they have chosen. Their future looks pretty bright. College or not, this is a labor intensive business, but they seem to love being self employed and working hard but watching the fruit of their labors pay off.

  104. That funeral amount is a crock! I am a funeral director and I dont make half that.

  105. Try hospitality. You can advance from bellman to General Manager and earn 60, or 200K or more depending on the location and size of the hotel. Thousands advance to the top without a degree.

    You (I did) anyone can start entry level as a hotel sales manager if you have a good head on your shoulders and like working with people. Advance fast in salary. My best year was 187K….never went to the GM job, I enjoy sales and marketing.

    Fun career, good salary, work in nice surroundings, and always jobs in the hotel business. Why are people unemployed if they really want to work. Front office, bellmen, engineering….but I liked sales…and that is where the money is. Every hotel has 1-10 or more sales people.

  106. I’ve been a customer service representative and got retrench because my company decided to have it outsourced somewhere in Asia. I thought I couldn’t get any job at all since I am not a college graduate but thanks to a friend who have helped me land into this home based work. I earned more than my job before plus I get more time to play with my kids and I can send my wife to work and pick her up. I love this job!And that is so true there can be so much of high paying jobs out there without having to finish a degree.

  107. I hold three earned degrees and am not working in a field that is based on any of them. Three of
    my kids have degrees but have been unable to secure jobs with those degrees (one sort of but not what she wanted) so…I have reevaluated the whole value of a degree. I noticed on your listings that I make twice as much as many of the “degree required” jobs, so what is the point of kids getting tens of thousands of dollars in debt and not being able to even use the degree. Mark Cuban predicts this will collapse traditional higher ed just as non-qualified loans collapsed the mortgage industry.

  108. Seems like the only job that one can truly make good wages without a degree is blogging. Poor research and a fairy-tale mentality to the real world and someone buys it. When bologna is packaged nice everyone is a customer.

  109. IT Guru

    I have done pretty well without college in the IT World. Now I’m into application development (self taught). I did go back to school anyway and got a Business Degree. Statistics drives everything (How many deviations is most data from the mean? Can’t answer, then you’re already behind, because you can’t see the big picture) I used to be a college basher, but now that I look back there are allot of things I learned that I would have never figured out on my own. I write better. I present better. I have a better understanding of what money is and how businesses think. I’m able to maneuver allot easier in the Corporate world. I think the mistake people make is in going for a college degree. Find out what you like then do research i.e. bureau of labor statistics to see job outlook etc., then proceed to finish the degree needed. It’s good to be a well rounded individual. Theory+Experience beats Experience alone any day and the bigwigs already know this. Even when unemployment was as 10% it was at 5% for college grads that’s a fact. Read Money magazine, network and understand the world. Also don’t just get a degree. The whole idea is to actually do something with the information you were taught, seems like common sense, but people don’t practice this. Don’t be one of them. You can also forget about people giving examples of people without degrees being successful, facts are educated folks are more likely to be successful.

    Don’t you want to have the best possible chance of success?

  110. A great eye opener! I still think that starting a small business is another good way to make a decent income without a degree.

  111. After over 25 years as a shop owner, and manager of other full service facilities, I have never had a problem getting a job as I have in the past year. Either I am over qualified or it is my age, over 50, is it me. I am a white male.

  112. “25 of the top-paying jobs that don’t require a four-year degree and their average salaries, based on data from the BLS and CBSalary.com. It is important to note that some of these jobs DO require some kind of a degree, just not a 4-year degree. As many have commented below many of the jobs do require formal training of some kind or even a two-year degree.”

    HELLO people! That was the “disclaimer” that the author inserted, so to speak. Not every job is absolute, and there are exceptions with everything. Not only that, but situations vary, according to region, experience, etc. Because that’s what I inferred from what the author wrote here. And he clearly stated that some require a degree of some kind or some extensive training. Am I the only one that read it that way? There are so many people on here saying things like “Such-and-such does require a degree, the author doesn’t know what he’s talking about…” That leads me to believe that they either reading comprehension skills need work, or they’re very sensitive about their particular profession. Which is fine; I think people are a bit subjective when it comes to their career choice. But to misrepresent what the author said, or not take it in its entirety, is misleading and confusing to other readers, and unjust to the author. I had to go back myself, and read the original post to ensure I read it correctly. I didn’t walk away with “dental hygienist doesn’t require a degree or any training”. Far from it! So I’m wondering if we’re even reading the same post.

  113. No one ever mentions farming. We’re all gonna be farmers eventually. After the revolution. Farm or die

  114. I don’t think studying several years to get a degree worth it nowadays in most cases. If your plan is to get a degree, get a job and wait until you retire then you are wrong! This time is over…The world moves too fast. There is a high probability that high demand jobs of today won’t be high demand jobs when you’ll be done with your degree or several years later… Unless you are studying to become a doctor because we will always need them or studying as a lawyer or in finance to eventually start your own business many degrees won’t bring you anywhere. Education is never lost! But will it automatically converts you into a money-making machine? No! I think that in the future, it will be profitable to be very versatile and to be adaptable. Don’t study to be an employee. Study to be a business owner or a self-employed worker! Creating yourself several streams of income might be the most intelligent thing to do. Get paid to write, get paid to fill out surveys, start a small business, get passive income from investments or rental properties, have a part-time job and sidelines etc… As with a great investment portfolio, diversifying your sources of income might make you being more adaptable to the evolving society and more resilient in case of emergency. Learn, learn learn, never stop learning and be aware of the new .tendencies to adapt yourself and your sources of income. Thank you Bob for your great articles. I enjoy reading them a lot!

  115. My husband has no education and is a high school drop out. He made 54k last year. It was a hard earn 54K so education is till the way to go.