Many people are interested in pursuing a fulfilling career that offers professional growth, but they don’t have the time to go back to college. You may be surprised to find many rewarding careers that don’t require a college degree. You just need to know what you’re looking for and how to get started. If you’re looking for a new career without going back to school, our guide can help you learn more about how to get started in some of the most fulfilling careers and high paying jobs that don’t require a college degree.
1. Home Health and Personal Care Aide
Projected Job Growth: 33%
Home health care and personal care aides help people with chronic illnesses or disabilities by helping them with daily tasks, such as bathing and taking medication.
They can work in hospices or group homes. They can also be full-time or part-time employees who report directly to their patient’s family on behalf of a home health care agency. The work of a home health and personal care aide can be very rewarding as they spend so much time with their patients that they become like family members.
You will need a high school degree to become a home health aide. Some home health agencies offer standardized tests and formal training on housekeeping and first aid training. Some states require that you obtain a license or certification before becoming a home health aide.
From 2020 to 2030, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 33% increase in home health and personal care aide jobs.
2. Massage Therapist
Median Salary: $43,620
Projected Job Growth: 32%
Using the power of touch, massage therapists can reduce pain and increase blood flow to tense muscles. Clients can choose from various massage therapy techniques, including deep tissue, acupressure, and reflexology, depending on their preferences and health concerns. Helping clients relax and being comforting is a rewarding aspect of massage therapy.
Some may work at a spa or a hospital, while others may provide massages in the privacy of their own homes or offices.
The job requires at least 500 hours of training in a massage therapy program. You also must obtain a state-specific massage therapy license before becoming a massage therapist. Demand for massage therapists is high, with expected job growth of 32% from 2020 to 2030.
3. Medical Assistant
Median Salary: $35,850
Projected Job Growth: 18%
Medical assistants work in hospitals, physician offices, and medical labs. They handle administrative tasks like answering phones and filing forms. They can also perform clinical duties such as taking blood samples and preparing them for laboratory tests.
The majority of medical assistants have completed some form of post-secondary education, such as a certificate from a vocational school. Others enter the field with only a high school diploma and gain experience through on-the-job training. Medical assistants are expected to see an 18% increase in job opportunities over the next decade.
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4. Landscaper and Groundskeeper
Median Salary: $32,220
Projected Job Growth: 8%
Landscapers are mainly responsible for the upkeep of horticulture, while groundskeepers are typically responsible for cleanup and snow clearing. They might take care of everything from public parks to private home gardens and even care for water fountains. Landscaping and groundskeeping can be a great calling for people who like working outdoors or enjoy taking care of plants.
Although becoming a landscaper or groundskeeper doesn’t require formal schooling, you must have a license to use fertilizers or pesticides in most states.
There are many opportunities for advancement for landscapers and groundskeepers, such as becoming a supervisor or a facilities manager. These occupations are expected to grow by 8% over the next decade.
5. Elevator Installers and Repairers
Median Salary: $88,540
Projected Job Growth: 6%
Elevator repairers are the ones who are installing, maintaining, and repairing elevators, escalators, chairlifts, and other lifts. They need to understand electronics, hydraulics, and electricity to repair these machines successfully. They also must have great attention to detail because their work affects people’s safety.
An elevator or escalator installer or repairer usually requires a high school diploma. They must undergo a four-year apprenticeship program in a union, industry group, or employer that involves on-the-job training and technical instruction. After the apprenticeship program, they must get licensed in most states and keep up with technological advancements with ongoing training.
In the next 10 years, there will be a 6% increase in employment for elevator installers and repairers.
6. Power Plant Operators
Median Salary: $89,090
Projected Job Growth: -14%
Power plant operators are responsible for the machinery that generates and distributes energy among generators. They oversee the control room, monitor equipment and systems, repair machinery, and manage quality assurance. As the consumer’s needs change throughout the day, they must also adjust the voltage.
This occupation usually requires a high school education or equivalent, several years of experience, and long-term on-the-job training. Many employers need potential entry-level employees to complete the Edison Electrical Institute’s Power Plant Maintenance and Plant Operator examinations to see whether they are qualified enough for this position. A reading comprehension test, a spatial ability test, and a mechanical concept test are all part of the examinations.
It is expected that the number of power plant operator jobs will decline by -14% over the next decade.
7. Commercial Pilot
Median Salary: $130,440
Projected Job Growth: 13%
While airline pilots work primarily for major airlines and transport passengers and cargo, commercial pilots also have complex duties and responsibilities. They work on unscheduled flights like charter flights and aerial tours. Commercial pilots transport executives, greeting them personally and loading their luggage. Besides flight operations, they are also responsible for the scheduling and maintenance of airplanes.
Commercial pilots must have at least a high school degree. They first complete their training with FAA-certified flight instructors or at flight schools. They have to undergo a medical test, satisfy knowledge and experience requirements, and pass written and flight exams to obtain a commercial pilot’s license from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Additionally, they must pass exams requiring knowledge of certain aircraft types, such as the Boeing 737. The demand for commercial pilots is expected to grow by 13% between 2020 and 2030.
8. Flight Attendant
Median Salary: $59,050
Projected Job Growth: 30%
If you’re looking for a job that combines customer service and safety, you can consider becoming an airline flight attendant. They are responsible for the wellbeing of passengers. They make sure passengers have everything they need, from water to blankets. They also supervise the airplane and take care of medical emergencies and rowdy passengers.
A flight attendant needs a high school diploma and 1 to 2 years of experience in customer service or sales roles involving direct public contact. They receive training from their employer that includes airline standards, correct evacuation tactics, federal flight laws, and first aid skills. Upon completing training, new flight attendants receive the FAA Certificate of Demonstrated Proficiency, which must be maintained throughout their careers.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that by 2030, there will be a 30% increase in employment for flight attendants.
9. Makeup Artist
Median Salary: $27,630
Projected Job Growth: 19%
Makeup artists apply makeup to customers for events such as weddings, proms, and other special occasions. Within the entertainment industry, they can change actors’ faces and bodies to resemble a character from any historical period, place, or scenario in consultation with the directors. They can also work with magazines, fashion brands, and celebrities to create the perfect look for their personal brands.
Little formal schooling is necessary as talent and a passion for beauty are required to become a makeup artist. Makeup artists who want to learn other skills such as hairdressing and facial treatments must complete a cosmetology program through a state-licensed vocational school and then get licensed by their state.
The outlook for makeup artists and cosmetologists is strong, with a projected 19% increase in employment over the next 10 years.
10. Web Developer
Median Salary: $77,200
Projected Job Growth: 13%
Web developers constantly look for ways to express their creativity through technology and keep up with the latest advancements. Web developers design and build websites to meet a company’s or client’s aesthetic, ensuring they have what is needed for performance. Their responsibilities might range from determining which special effects can go on a website to testing websites and apps.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the need for web developers to increase by 13% in 2030.
You Can Find Your Next Rewarding Job With No College Degree
These professions offer great opportunities to do what you love while making money at it too. Researching the types of jobs you are interested in is crucial for finding a fulfilling career.
You can take some time to narrow down the list and look at your past work experiences. You can research more on the job’s requirements and what kind of work would suit you best. With a few years of on-the-job training and vocational instruction, you could find yourself in a fulfilling career with excellent earning potential.