Careers that pay well without a College degree


There’s a fallacy that’s been in the world for decades that you need a college degree if you want to have a long and successful career. To say that this is utterly false is an understatement. You can start a job for a company out of high school then eventually become that company’s CEO. Will it take a long time and a lot of hard work? Of course, it will. Are you an outlier? Most likely, yes. But it’s possible.

Whether you’re looking to become the CEO of a company or simply want a job that helps you comfortably pay the bills but don’t have a college degree, you can get there. To help, we have a list of six careers that pay well without requiring a college degree to be successful. Keep in mind that while these positions don’t take a college degree, some will require that you take courses, get licensed, or pass a certification exam.


We don’t often think about how necessary it is to have plumbers until we need one in our home. The high demand for plumbers means a couple of things for people who are looking for a job. First, you have built-in job security. Not only is what you do important to keep the home clean and water running, but it also ensures that homes are free from diseases as the sewage system runs properly. Second, as residential areas expand and people move to new areas, there will be an increased need for plumbers. Finally, you can get a certificate from a community college and work in an apprenticeship to learn the trade while getting paid.

Radiologic Technician

It’s not uncommon for radiologic technicians to have an associate degree in the field. However, you can complete a certification program in one or two years and be ready to hit the ground running. A radiologic technician is an important support position for radiologists and other medical professionals in performing medical imaging and assisting with patient education. These roles will always be necessary and available in this field. Additionally, it’s a versatile field that offers a variety of opportunities in X-ray, MRI, sonogram, and others.

Pharmacy Technician

Another position that offers a variety of careers opportunities is working as a pharmacy technician. Most will spend their time in retail pharmacies at drug stores or supermarkets, but there are always positions in hospitals and clinical settings where technicians can learn different aspects about the practice of pharmacy as a whole. Typically, a pharmacy technician is required to have a high school diploma or GED, complete some amount of on-the-job training, and complete a certification course in-person or via online learning. These courses often take less than a year to complete.

Medical Receptionist

As you can see, the medical field is ripe with positions for those who don’t have a college degree. Medical providers like doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and others require high levels of support and a medical receptionist happens to be someone who wears many hats in this role. As a medical receptionist, your duties include but are not limited to:

  • Scheduling appointments
  • Checking patients in for appointments
  • Coordinating with other clinics and departments within the clinic
  • Filing documents
  • Maintaining a high level of confidentiality and abiding by privacy laws

While completing a medical receptionist course isn’t requisite to get the job, it teaches you the necessary skills to be successful and sets you apart from the rest of the competition.

Insurance Salesperson

Everyone needs to have insurance. Whether it’s for their home, vehicle, or anything else, insurance coverage is a necessary part of life. Becoming an insurance salesperson requires no college education to get started but there is necessary licensure that needs to be completed before being able to sell.

The most common way to become an insurance salesperson is to work for a large insurance company in your own agency. This might require a certain level of capital as you’ll have to buy an agency or the book from another agent. It’s not uncommon for someone who sells insurance to open their own brokerage firm where they’ll work with clients to find the best plan for their needs from a wide selection of insurance companies and their available plans.

Fitness Instructor

As a certified fitness instructor, you can work with clients in many capacities. Whether you’re working directly with a client as their personal trainer, teaching classes, or helping to write fitness programs, you don’t need a college degree. While there are courses available where you can learn the ins and outs of the industry as well as the latest in techniques and technology, there is no education requirement to work in the field. Professional certification is recommended as it will make you much more competitive in the field and give you a credential to prove to your clients that you know what you’re doing.