The escalating costs of higher education coupled with the pandemic have reduced the number of people going to college. Even student loan forgiveness can’t completely erase the effects of rising university costs.
Thankfully, it’s not as impossible as you may think to find a career in a business that doesn’t require an advanced degree. We’ll share an overview of top jobs available with only a high school diploma and why you should look into them.
These jobs can provide stability, great benefits, and the opportunity to get discounted services. For example, auto insurance for postal employees is available at a lower price because of their employment.
Check out the following jobs when weighing the possibilities of continuing your education or beginning a career.
United States Postal Service (USPS) Worker
The USPS has several positions available that don’t require a college degree. Here are some of the opportunities to consider:
- Mail carrier
- Mail handler
- Mail processor
- Window clerk
These are entry-level positions, and since the Post Office hires from within, there’s room to advance your career and become a manager and maybe even the Postmaster.
The USPS is part of the Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS), and it’s one of the most popular benefits of working for the Post Office. Another benefit is that some insurance companies offer discounts for federal employees, so you could save on home and auto insurance just because of your employer.
Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) Technician
Entry-level HVAC positions usually provide an apprenticeship. Although you won’t get paid much to complete your internship, it’s worth the effort because your employer typically pays for your training, so you won’t have to take out loans for your education.
Once your apprenticeship is complete, you’ll start earning more and can work your way up to an HVAC contractor.
Since most HVAC jobs are union-based, your benefits will depend on your union’s bargaining agreement. But HVAC professionals usually enjoy the benefits of a respectable salary, health insurance, and a retirement plan.
If you’re seeking a career as an electrician, you can receive on-the-job training in the form of an apprenticeship. While learning the trade, you can earn a small hourly wage. If the initial salary scares you, just remember that you’re not paying for your education. Instead, you’re getting paid to learn.
Once you learn the trade, you may choose to work for a company and seek promotions and enjoy the benefits of working for a larger company, like health insurance and retirement program.
But, you might decide you’d rather work for yourself, in which case you’ll have the freedom to make your schedule and set your own rates.
It may be one of the hardest jobs in the world, but it’s also one of the most rewarding. Unfortunately, in some regions, the hiring process for firefighters is so competitive that you need a college degree to have an advantage, even though it’s not a requirement.
But if you dream of becoming a firefighter and don’t want to go to college, you still have a good chance of realizing your dream by making some sacrifices.
For example, you may need to seek employment as a firefighter in a smaller town with less competition. Alternatively, you could volunteer with a volunteer fire department. Your years of experience will rival a college degree after a few years, and you’ll have a better chance of getting hired at your number one choice department.
Mechanic is a broad term. But if you have a propensity for engines, you should consider becoming a mechanic and finding what fascinates you most and where you excel.
Mechanics keep cars running, planes flying, and trucks transporting. You can work for a corporation or start your own business. It’s easy to see that there’s room for new mechanics in the market when you consider that many people wait several weeks for their mechanic to have time to service their vehicle.
Some information technology positions require a college degree, but most realize that a degree isn’t critical to computer success. Considering how quickly technology changes, it makes sense that a college degree wouldn’t be a prerequisite to working in the field.
For example, by the time you graduate, many of the things you learned your first year will already be outdated.
You might be a good fit for an IT or software development career if you have a natural understanding of how computers work and enjoy keeping up with the latest technology and cybersecurity.
Insurance agents help people mitigate their risks to maintain financial security even in a catastrophic event.
Most insurance agents sell several lines of insurance, so working in the insurance industry means you’ll need to learn the ins and outs of home, auto, umbrella, life, and disability insurance, among others.
This list of possibilities is only the tip of the iceberg. While college can be a good experience and a degree is necessary for many professions, there are just as many options for people without a college degree.