$50,000 jobs, no college degree needed

Don't Waste Your Money

A college degree is getting more expensive every year.

And that degree no longer promises a high paying job, meaning that students can now spend decades paying off their student loans.

That's why you may be interested in some good paying jobs that don't require a college degree.

Technical School Enrollment Up

We've all heard the horror stories of huge college debts, and few jobs upon graduation.

So Cindy Wentland and Erica Coleman instead decided to study nursing at a technical college, which are seeing big surges in enrollment. There's a good reason.

"Compared to some of the other colleges, its a huge huge difference," Coleman said. "Thousands of dollars, it makes a huge difference."

Community colleges and trade schools may not have the prestige of a university. But for a fraction of the cost, they are turning out graduates who are finding good jobs.

Demand for Their Students

Harry Snyder is workforce development director at a vocational school many college bound kids don't even consider.  He says they should, because there's lots of demand for these students.

"There are great jobs that don't require a 4 year degree," he said. "Last week we had some welders start work, and they were making $23 an hour right out of school."

That comes to $46,000 a year, right after a year of trade school.

Harry also suggests the field of diesel engine repair, where companies are paying top dollar.

"You earn about $18 to $20 an hour starting off," Snyder said. "About $40,000 a year.  If you get into overtime, you can make $60,000 dollars a year."

He says a good diesel mechanic can new earn $60,000 a year, with no college degree. You need just a year of  school, for less than 9 grand.

If diesel is too messy for you, he suggests studying the HVAC trades, which most of us call air conditioning.

"Heating/ventilation/air conditioning are great jobs right now.  And they are looking for technicians as we speak."

Average starting salary: $35,000. And he says a good installer can work up to 50k in a few years.

Good Jobs, No Degree

The full list of $50,000 jobs that don't need a degree, compiled from CNN/Money and Career Builder.com:

  •     -Heating/Air Conditioning
  •     -Diesel maintenance
  •     -Aircraft maintenance
  •     -Air traffic control
  •     -Dental hygiene
  •     -Nursing
  •     -Radiation therapy
  •     -Police
  •     -Urban fire fighting
  •     -E.M.T. work (Emergency Medical Technician)
  •     -Interstate truck driving
  •     --Elevator repair
  •     --Auto body repair

Victor Sokol and Ashley Pence are studying to be  E.M.T's, who are thrilled to be able to help others, without taking on huge college debt.

Pence explained "it's a quick path. It works very well financially, and it's a lot cheaper than going to a 4 year college."

Remember: Training Required

Sure, most good paying jobs require either a 2 year degree or 1 -2 years of vocational training.  You can't just graduate high school and land a job as a diesel mechanic or air traffic controller.

But if you are willing to take the training, you could have a lucrative future ahead of you.    
As always, don't waste your money.

Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.

"Like" John Matarese on Facebook

Follow John on Twitter (@DWYM)

Print this article Back to Top