In 2008, the recession destroyed the job market and especially those without degrees. Unfortunately, for those who can’t afford to go to college or didn’t go to college when they were younger, the market for those without degrees hasn’t gotten any better. Those still need to find jobs without a college degree. So, how is the standard of living for those without a degree?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics tracks which professions do not require a college education, how many people currently hold these job, and their median salaries.
When trying to find jobs without a college degree, having a specialization is a key to earn the highest wages. Jobs like elevator installers, power plant operators, and transportation inspectors require a high level of skill and must be done in person by someone with years of experience and certifications. In the US, the median household income is $56,516 which includes jobs without a college degree.
In this field, a worker will adjust control rods affecting how much electricity a reactor generates. It also includes monitoring reactors, turbines, generators, and cooling systems. In the workforce, there are approximately 7,170 workers.
A transport manager will policy and procedure for transportation operations developed and implemented by transport managers. They are also in charge of personnel activities and schedules and oversee shipment coordination and routing. They provide approximately 113,270 workers.
Police supervisors perform a variety of supervisory tasks for the police department. There are about 100,200 workers.
For a power distributor, they distribute and regulate the flow of power between entities. Their job also includes operating generating stations, substations, distribution lines, and users. They will keep track of the status of circuits and connections. There are about 11,380 workers.
Typically, they assemble, install, repair, or maintain electric or hydraulic freight or passenger elevators, escalators, or dumbwaiters. This includes approximately 22,240 workers.
Many know detectives from TV. They gather facts for crime investigations; compile evidence by observing suspects, interviewing witnesses and suspects. Sometimes they will examine physical evidence. There are probably 104,980 workers.
Commercial pilots fly for airlines that transport people and cargo on fixed schedule. They can also fly for charter flights, rescue operations, firefighting, aerial photography, and aerial application of agricultural materials. In the field, there are approximately 38,980 workers.
Their job will vary according to a specific area of expertise. They will also monitor and adjust video equipment including cameras, including about 18,620 workers.
An electrician will read blueprints or technical diagrams. They install and maintain wiring, control, and lighting systems. Sometimes they will have to inspect electrical components and identify electrical problems: approximately 23,060 workers.
Plant operators will control power-generating equipment with coal, nuclear fuel, or natural gas. They read charts, meters, and gauges to monitor voltage and electricity flows. This is approximately 35,010 workers.
The caution about approaching these jobs is that they employ about 1.4 million people total in the top 25 highest paying jobs without a college degree. The good news is that the entire working population in the US is over 205 million people.
These jobs demand years of experience and specialization and are pretty rare. While you may not need a college degree, you should at least have post-secondary training. For example, you can’t graduate high school and start your own electrical company. You usually have to start an apprenticeship or join a training program.
Including the top 10, these jobs are also higher in pay: all above $60K in salary.
In the end, you want to choose a job that can’t replace you with automation or outsourcing because then you’ll be set for retirement.
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