High-paying positions frequently call for a four-year degree. However, it may be feasible to locate a career path that may provide you with stable work without a four-year degree while still meeting your income demands. Additionally, you could be able to begin your professional path at a job that can pay you an annual income of roughly $50,000. This article is a list of positions that, on average, pay $50,000 a year and don’t require a four-year degree.
35 Jobs That Pay Over $50k And Don’t Require A Degree
The earnings for the following careers average just around $50,000 per year, with many earning close to this average, and you may typically enter these positions without a degree. It’s also crucial to remember that even though many of these job options can pay hourly or weekly rates, the compensation benefits total more than $50,000 when based on a 40-hour workweek.
Despite the fact that the majority of the occupations on this list may not call for a four-year degree, some may call for specialized training, specialized certification, or even an associate’s degree. However, given that the average incomes seem to offer a respectable income, it may still be worthwhile to look into these professions further.
1. Janitorial Manager
If you’re wondering why janitorial managers receive some of the highest salaries for positions that don’t need a degree, think about all the labor-intensive tasks they have to supervise. Cleaning floors and fixtures, removing garbage or other waste, maintaining lawn care, trimming shrubs and flowers, and clearing and maintaining walkways and parking lots are all duties that fall within the purview of janitorial supervisors.
High school graduation and six or more years of experience are normally required for this role, however additional post-secondary education may give you an advantage. You’d earn $93,500 annually.
2. Property manager
$51,903 annually is the average pay in the country.
A property manager’s main responsibilities include dealing with current tenants, leaseholders, and potential tenants. Managers may work for a corporation that manages apartments or condos or for particular property owners. Property managers frequently schedule and evaluate upkeep and repairs, address tenant complaints, gather rent, and even collaborate with property owners throughout the eviction process.
Many states may demand that a property manager be certified; however, a license can be obtained by taking and passing a certification exam. You need a high school diploma or GED to take the exam, and it might be beneficial to be familiar with the subjects and ideas tested.
3. Aircraft Mechanic III
Maintenance and repair of mechanical and avionic components of aircraft, an inspection of structural, mechanical, and electronic components, cleaning, refueling, and oil changes, painting of the aircraft, and upkeep of all other aircraft standards as mandated by the Federal Aviation Administration are all duties of this position.
You’d require: A high school graduation, training, an internship, and four to six years of experience are typically required to become an aviation mechanic.
Your annual salary would be $85,200.
4. Retailer Store Manager
$44,437 is the average yearly wage in the country.
Primary obligations: The effectiveness and completion of a retail store’s daily activities are the responsibility of the retail store manager. In addition to monitoring department managers, customer service agents, cashiers, and other personnel as they carry out their jobs, managers may work with staff and department teams to keep the store tidy and organized. They also perform customer service duties, making sure that consumers are happy with the store’s goods and services.
You might need to begin in an entry-level role within a retail chain prior to becoming a store manager. Since this position is genuinely experience-based, having some prior retail work experience may be advantageous when moving up to a managerial position.
5. Automobile Service Station Manager
Average Pay for Service Station Managers: $45,204
A bachelor’s degree in management or a closely related discipline, together with many years of management experience in the automobile industry, may be preferred by some companies.
Workplace training: Most people can reach this level of employment by climbing the corporate ladder through on-the-job training. Certification could also be necessary.
The daily management of a gas station is mostly the responsibility of the service station manager.
Setting the daily gas rates, scheduling and educating the other station personnel, purchasing fresh inventory to keep the shelves supplied, maintaining service station safety, and acting as the direct manager for the other staff members are all included in the job description.
6. Law enforcement officer
National average yearly salary: $53,567
Primary obligations: All people of the community are protected and the law is upheld by police personnel. By patrolling the neighborhood where they are stationed under their authority, they are the primary employees that actively enforce the law. They frequently react to calls, write misdemeanor and traffic tickets, conduct arrests, and even have to testify in court.
Even though a bachelor’s degree may not be required for employment as a law enforcement officer, anyone interested in this career path must complete a police academy training course. These programs can span anywhere from six weeks to six months or longer, depending on the state, county, or authority.
7. Landscape Architect
Average Pay for a Landscape Architect: $65,760
Typically, landscape architecture graduates with at least a bachelor’s degree are recommended. A summer internship is strongly advised. It may be necessary for you to enroll in some horticulture and landscape design courses at a community college for this career, but it is not necessary.
You will be able to choose whether you want to pursue certification for this vocation or not. However, you will have access to bigger contracts and a wider range of employment if you are accredited. Although different states have different regulations, the majority of states do need licensure. This may be an excellent job for you if you don’t mind working hard and getting a bit dirty.
8. Title Examiner
$46, 578 annually is the average wage nationwide.
A title examiner offers legal assistance for questions and records relating to real estate titles. These experts frequently perform research on real estate and insurance paperwork, however, they occasionally offer aid with cars and other forms of transportation if necessary. Determining legal ownership of items and property is the main goal of their activity.
The only true prerequisite for employment as a property title examiner is high school graduation. In essence, you could be expected to complete on-the-job training and accrue more years of experience in the area in order to earn better earnings as a title examiner.
9. Lead Carpenter
Average Pay for Lead Carpenter: $51,150
The majority of lead carpenters start out as skilled apprentices. A high level of practical experience is required for this position, either by attending a trade school to learn technical skills or by working as an apprentice to a lead carpenter.
By attending a trade school, you will really be required to earn a certification, thereby increasing your marketability in the industry. Frequently, training entails mastering a number of power instruments, such as power drills, and saws.
You would most likely replace your teacher if you worked as an apprentice. If you love dealing with people, you can succeed in this sort of employment in any case.
10. Fitness Manager
$49,764 is the average yearly wage in the country.
Primary responsibilities: Fitness managers develop training routines and programs for members and other clients in order to run the gyms and fitness facilities they work in. In addition to managing the day-to-day commercial activities of a fitness facility, fitness managers may also oversee exercise courses.
Fitness managers frequently begin their careers by obtaining experience as associates at fitness facilities and rising up the experience ladder. Many fitness associates may become fitness managers by developing their talents, acting professionally, and showcasing their capacity for leadership.
11. Director of Security
$78,608 is the average salary. A minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in computer science or a closely similar discipline is often recommended, as well as years of experience in roles that are closely comparable.
In order to become the Director of Security, you must really start out in an entry-level security post and advance through the ranks. Additionally, you might need to complete a security guard training program, but this will probably be fully covered by the business, so there would be no actual educational expense to you.
You might also need to pass a background check and a few quick health exams, depending on the business you work for.
12. Hotel Manager
$48,961 is the average yearly wage in the country.
Hotel managers’ main responsibilities include planning, marketing, and supervising staff. Additionally, they could arrange events, schedule and maintain accommodations, and maintain records of the hotel’s daily operations. They might also coordinate and manage the hotel’s services. Most hotel managers begin their careers by getting expertise through employment in a hotel or other hospitality setting. Hotel managers often have a wealth of professional experience.
13. Elevator Mechanic
Average Pay for Elevator Mechanics: $77,806
Similar to the Lead Carpenter position, this position is likely to need a degree from a trade school, an internship, or several years of experience. There are a few other requirements for being an elevator technician, though.
Moderate to extensive training; trade school enrollment may be required to work with major businesses. Many huge organizations may demand that you hold a license and work for an insured business, which in this case would need attending trade school so that you could work on these big corporate tasks.
14. Sales Representative
$65,069 per year is the average pay in the country.
primary obligations: A salesperson pitches goods and services to a broad range of clients. Sales representatives frequently collaborate with customers to identify answers to sales issues, investigate goods and services that meet their needs and make sure the sales process is quick and effective. Sales representatives frequently use advertising efforts and referrals to bring in new leads.
Sales representatives frequently begin their careers in entry-level roles and rise through bonus incentives, referral programs, and high commission sales.
15. Freelance Photographer
Average Pay for Freelance Photographers: $36,630
Both self-education and practical training gained via experience are often required for this profession. In this sector, natural skill and inventiveness are highly rewarded.
Being a freelance photographer requires a commitment to one’s work and a keen eye for aesthetic details. Long-distance travel may also be necessary in this line of work in order to get the correct “shot” for the right story.
In a way, working as a freelance photographer may take many different shapes. For example, you can shoot the natural world for magazines, document newsworthy events for newspapers, or even act as pap for the latest celebrity controversy.
16. Sanitation supervisor
$57,673 is the average yearly wage in the country.
Sanitation supervisors’ main responsibilities include supervising all sanitation personnel and carrying out state and federal regulations pertaining to hygienic workplaces. In general, managers can conduct routine audits and keep track of staff members’ budgets and supplies. Sanitation managers may work for private businesses or for a facility that is operated by the state or the federal government.
Sanitation supervisors might need to have a bachelor’s degree in public health or a related discipline, yet it’s also feasible to advance to this position by beginning in an entry-level position and working in the industry for three to five years.
17. Funeral Director
Average Pay for Funeral Directors: $56,850
A high school diploma or its equivalent, as well as an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree in funeral service education or a closely related discipline, are the minimum educational requirements. As well, internships are welcomed.
Before accepting a Funeral Director employment, one must be licensed in the United States. Some states may also demand a specific degree of education or the successful completion of an apprenticeship.
Funeral directors may need to complete training programs and pursue certification, but they can potentially earn up to $80,000 per year.
Other typical tasks include assisting with the preparation of the departed corpse for the burial service and providing counseling to bereaved family members.
18. Internal wholesaler
$55,373 annually is the average pay nationwide.
Primary obligations: Information on mutual funds, annuities, and other kinds of security funds must be received and communicated by internal wholesalers. Internal wholesalers examine information on both new and current securities and put into place strategies for marketing this information to the external sales team that interacts with and educates the public.
However, wholesalers generally begin as associates or administrative assistants in major insurance or financial organizations. In general, no degree is necessary to start this vocation. Then, wholesalers could advance and need to pass a certification exam to get the right kind of license.
19. Nuclear Power Reactor Operator
Average Pay for Nuclear Power Reactor Operators: $72,384
Some nuclear power facilities demand an engineering degree, while entry-level operator jobs can be obtained without a college education. In some circumstances, passing the certification exam may be all that is required.
A moderate to a high level of training and potential certification is necessary. Operators of nuclear power reactors oversee nuclear reactors, keeping an eye on them and making required modifications to maintain the safety of the nuclear power generation process.
They must also shut down extremely specialized systems and do periodic maintenance on the reactors.
20. X-ray technologist
$58,738 annually is the average pay in the country.
Primary obligations: Radiologic technologists, sometimes known as X-ray technicians, employ imaging technology to scan various body sections. When examining a patient, they may use X-ray, MRI, or CT scanning technology to see any potential problem areas on the body. Many X-ray technologists finish a brief certification program that prepares them for taking and passing the national certification test to acquire their license in X-ray technology, even though it could be necessary for individuals to obtain an associate degree in the area.
21. Fire Fighting
Average Firefighter Pay: $49,080.
An advantage would be any past training in emergency medical services. Along with other certificates, completing a physically challenging training program is required.
A firefighter’s beginning pay is frequently just a little bit over $30,000, but depending on where you work and whether you advance to a supervisory position, you may make more than $50,000 annually.
Firefighters need to learn how to utilize common field tools like hoses and ladders, as well as how to treat injured people medically and react appropriately when they come into contact with dangerous chemicals or flames.
22. Claims adjuster
$55,002 per year is the average pay in the country.
Primary obligations: To ascertain the amount of money insurance companies should pay customers for the loss, claims adjusters review both personal injury and property damage claims. In general, adjusters examine structures, companies, car damage, and injuries caused by accidents. You must pass a certification exam and receive the necessary licensure in your state or area before you can begin working in this industry. To understand more about the field, taking one or two courses may be beneficial.
23. Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT)
Average Pay for Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT): $33,380
A high school certificate or its equivalent, as well as CPR certification, are often necessary. It’s typical to finish a postsecondary program of study. In general, there is little to no on-the-job training, while most states probably demand completion of certification levels.
You’ll be glad to know that the employment outlooks in this profession are highly promising if you’re ready to enroll in EMT programs to become an EMT. However, people with additional EMT qualifications have a greater chance of landing a decent career in the EMS (like paramedics).
24. Railroad Jobs
Average Pay for Railroad Positions: $59,780. A high school diploma or its equivalent is often needed.
Moderate-level training lasts for several months. It could also be necessary to get certified. Are you fond of trains? Do you like to travel? If so, a job on the train could be ideal for you.
There are many job openings, from switch operators to managerial roles to engineers and conductors. Working on the railroad allows you to earn a good living while traveling to different areas of the country. In this field, it helps to have good hand-eye coordination, visual acuity, and communication abilities.
25. Information Technology (IT) Technician
The average salary is $41,305
It is normally preferable to have an Associate’s degree, Bachelor’s degree, or certificate program in computer science or a similar profession. An entry-level job often does not require a degree.
Little to no on-the-job training is anticipated since some firms have established training requirements that applicants must meet before being hired. A college degree is not necessary for many job options in information technology.
At first, you’ll presumably work a helpdesk and take support calls, earning only $11–13 per hour. If you get into network engineering and systems administration, you may easily make $50,000 to $70,000 per year as your knowledge and expertise grow.
26. Criminal Investigator
Average Pay for Criminal Investigators: $58,582
A high school diploma or an equivalent is required. Experience in law enforcement for a number of years is preferred. Some businesses do need a criminal justice associate’s degree or a comparable degree as a minimum.
Training on the Job: Moderate training on the Job is anticipated. Criminal investigators must often hold both a normal license and a permit to carry a firearm, according to the majority of states.
Learning how to correctly acquire information and conduct remote surveillance, among other mundane chores, are standard training activities. Another skill gained for a particular area is reconstructing accident scenes.
27. Brick Mason
Average Pay for Brick Masons: $42,900
A high school diploma or an equivalent is required. Prior to employment, many masons also undergo lengthy apprenticeship programs or specialized courses.
Any prior construction work experience is acceptable. Apprenticeships and/or on-the-job training spent following seasoned masons are common ways to learn the craft.
Promising applicants can study typical masonry techniques in these apprenticeship programs, including building fundamentals, measuring calculations, and safety protocols. Typically, a brick mason builds walls, fences, and other constructions out of bricks.
A typical workday might involve reviewing plans, collecting necessary supplies, using power tools to clean surfaces, and lifting large objects for appropriate alignment.
28. Postal Service Worker
Average Pay for Postal Service Employees: $57,260
A high school diploma or an equivalent is required. Along with a spotless track record, an outstanding driving record is a need. Short-term on-the-job training is required, and it includes passing a written examination, a driving test, and other common background checks.
Postal service employees typically collect, sort, process, and distribute mail on schedule. They must ensure that mail is delivered without a hitch. They also collect client signatures for certified mail and offer typical postal items like stamps. A strong emphasis on customer service and attention to detail are essential traits for this position.
29. Pharmacy Technician
Average Pay for Pharmacy Technicians: $31,750
A high school diploma or an equivalent is required. Before employment is permitted, finish a pharmacy technology postsecondary program.
Moderate on-the-job training is necessary, which often entails passing an exam or completing a specific program. Additionally, you might have to get certified and learn how to use automated dispensing equipment.
Pharmacy technicians are in charge of accurately filling, packing, and labeling medicines for patients or medical professionals. Additionally, you would be responsible for managing inventories, handling insurance claims, and correctly entering patient data into a database on a computer.
30. Medical Coder
Average Pay for Medical Coders: $45,035
Prior Education: Usually an Associate’s Degree is desirable, although a high school diploma or its equivalent is necessary.
Since completing particular training programs is frequently required as a condition of employment, there is little to no on-the-job training. Certifications might also need to be finished. With the Baby Boomer generation aging, the healthcare sector is now seeing tremendous growth. There aren’t enough medical professionals, including nurses.
A group of medical coders works behind the scenes to type up thorough reports on the operations you underwent and charge you or your insurance provider for the money owing.
According to the 2017 wage study conducted by The American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC), non-certified medical coders typically earn $45,035 annually. To qualify for a greater salary, becoming a Certified Professional Coder (CPC) is widely desired.
31. Truck Driving
Average Pay for Truck Driving: $53,199
High school graduation or its equivalent, together with a commercial driver’s license (CDL), are often desired. Drivers are required to go through several weeks of on-the-job training.
You may make $45,000 if you’ve finished your six to eight weeks of training and obtained your commercial driver’s license. If you progress to the position of trainer, you might earn more than $70,000 annually.
It’s essential to keep a spotless driving record. Truck drivers are required to follow all traffic regulations, make sure that the cargo is safe for transport, and maintain the functionality of all vehicles and equipment.
A commercial driver’s license, or CDL, is required to work as a truck driver. I suggest utilizing a CDL Practice Test along with the CDL Test to get the answers.
32. Personal Trainer
Average Pay for Personal Trainers: $38,222
A high school diploma or an equivalent is required. Your ability to instruct customers in the right physical fitness approaches will probably be necessary for this vocation. Strong educational backgrounds in nutrition, exercise science, or other relevant subjects are common among personal trainers.
While not very challenging to earn, this credential is far less expensive than any of the other types of trade schools previously discussed. Continuous learning by increasing or renewing one’s professional certificates constitutes on-the-job training.
Job Description: If you want to succeed in this area of work, you probably need to be quite physically active yourself and have a passion for it.
A typical workday might involve visiting with customers one-on-one to evaluate their physical needs.
33. Cable Supervisor
Average Pay for a Cable Supervisor: $51,112
A high school diploma or an equivalent is required. Technical education or an internship or assistantship, however, could be advantageous. On-the-Job Training: Applying for a job with some management or scheduling experience is a smart idea. Alternatively, you may apply for an entry-level position and work your way up by getting to know the company.
This career would be in a managerial-type environment. You would be in charge of managing the installation staff that put up cable boxes and internet connections as well as the maintenance.
Interpreting cable specifications, resolving cable equipment problems, and recruiting and instructing any new cable technicians are other typical job responsibilities.
34. Real Estate Broker
The average income for real estate brokers is $56,730. A high school diploma or an equivalent is required. A college degree in finance or a comparable profession, however, could be useful.
Although you must attend a few classes to become certified, they are significantly less expensive than paying for a college education. State-by-state variations in licensing requirements are frequent.
You will still need to attend a few programs to become certified in order to work as a real estate broker. However, compared to the cost of paying for a college education, these courses are still far less expensive for you.
In addition to submitting the necessary papers for the deals, you will be trying to sell residences. Additionally, you will assist clients with loan agreements. You normally work for yourself as a freelancer, setting your own hours and getting paid on commission. Experience with market research and effective negotiating techniques will be beneficial in this position.
35. Air Traffic Controllers (ATC)
Average Pay for Air Traffic Controllers (ATC): $124,540
Prior Education: A college degree is not necessary, however, due to the nature of the profession, experience is highly regarded. In general, formal education and advanced job experience are recommended.
Training on the Job: Strict training and testing are necessary. An Air Traffic Controller must successfully complete the FAA’s extensive testing, which includes mental stability and health examinations. The testing procedure must be started before the age of 31.
Due to the everyday demands of work, being an air traffic controller has long been rated as the most stressful profession in the United States. Additionally, night shifts, weekends, and even holidays are common for air traffic controllers.
A typical workday can involve controlling in-air traffic, such as normal takeoffs and landings. There may be instances when in-flight crises must be managed, which accounts for the position’s high level of stress.
In this position, it is crucial to have strong organizational and problem-solving skills in addition to outstanding communication qualities. To get a job in this industry, knowing someone who already works there might be helpful.