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99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree

Updated March 12, 2020 31.3k votes 5.2k voters 242.7k views96 items

List RulesVote on the most appealing job, based on duties and salary

Despite what society may tell you, plenty of great jobs don't require a college degree. If you are starting out in your career, looking for the right career path, and considering skipping college and just jumping in to the work force, you might be on the right track. According to the the U.S. Department of Labor, 2 out of every 3 jobs only require on-the-job training. Taking into account the debt that you may acquire after paying for college tuition and the four years of your life that you will be delaying gainful employment, it may be a good idea to bypass college and work on landing one of these highest paying jobs without a degree. 

If you are more established in your career and are looking for a change and want a top paying job, but never earned your Bachelor's Degree, you can use this list a resource to discover the great, fun, high paying jobs that only require experience and specialty training. Some of the best jobs in America don't require a BA or a BS.

The high paying jobs on this list are not necessarily easy--most of them still require specialty skills, but if you are smart and start at the bottom and work your way up you can land a great job without going to college. Consider this: if you start working right after you finish High School, you will already have four years of work experience under your belt by the time your peers graduate college. If you get focused early and decide what career path will land you one of these top paying jobs, you can get ahead and avoid debt.

*Salary information for this list is based on figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for 2013

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  • 1
    Criminal Investigator and Spec is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    381

    Criminal Investigator and Special Agent

    Average Income: $53,990
  • 2
    Detective is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    265
    Average Income: $68,820
  • 3
    Firefighter is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Average Income: $50,000
  • 4
    Diagnostic Medical Sonographer is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

    Average Income: $64,380
  • 5
    Chef is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Chef

  • 6
    Radiation Therapist is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Radiation Therapist

    Average Income: $74,900
  • 7
    Real estate broker is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Average Income: $58,720
  • 8
    Welder is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Welder

  • 9
    Bartender is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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  • 10
    Pet Groomer is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Pet Groomer

  • 11
    Writer is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    322
  • 12
    Web Developer is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Average Income: $76,000
  • 13
    Police Identification and Reco is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Police Identification and Records Officer

    Average Income: $53,990
  • 14
    Air traffic controller is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Average Income: $108,000
  • 15
    Construction Manager is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Average Income: $95,956
  • 16
    Commercial Pilot is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Commercial Pilot

    Average Income: $67,500
  • 17
    Police and Detectives Supervis is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Police and Detectives Supervisor

    Average Income: $64,430
  • 18
    Electrician is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Average Income: $48,250
  • 19
    The Mystery Shopper is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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  • 20
    Farmer is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    270
    Average Income: $58,845
  • 21
    Artist is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
    392
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    Average Income: $58,840
  • 22
    Construction Machine Operator is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Construction Machine Operator

    Average Income: $40,000
  • 23
    Fashion Designer is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Average Income: $64,530
  • 24
    Postmaster is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Average Income: $60,300
  • 25
    Occupational Therapy Assistant is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list 99 Great Jobs That Don't Require a College Degree
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    Occupational Therapy Assistant

    Average Income: $34,000
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