Every parent dreams of their child attending a prestigious Ivy League university, but let’s face it: school isn’t for everyone. If you’ve struggled in school throughout your childhood, why would you think about paying money to go to college and prolong your suffering for another four or five years? But if you don’t go to college, you’ll still need a job to support yourself. Is that even possible in this day and age without a college degree or years worth of experience?
The truth is that there are many opportunities out there that don’t require much more than a high school diploma. There are many entry-level jobs that pay fairly well and could even lead to a more advanced career. So if you have no desire to continue your education at this time, but don’t want to spend your time flipping burgers or stocking shelves, here are 15 jobs to consider.
1. Sales representative
Source: ERP Apps
Almost all companies have a sales team in place to – what else? – help drive sales. If you have excellent people skills and know how to communicate and build relationships, this may be the right job for you. No experience is needed for some positions, although a little training in the field doesn’t hurt. This field is growing steadily – between 9 and 21%, depending on the type of sales and industry. Salaries start at around $24,000 a year and can go as high as $150,000 once you develop experience.
2. Legal assistant
Source: Christopher Redmaster Law
You don’t need to attend law school to start a legal career. You can come a legal assistant for a law firm with little to no experience. Duties include preparing and organizing documents and managing schedules. Some training is preferred, but there are many at-home programs available. You can make anywhere from $27,000 to $80,000 a year.
3. Veterinary assistant
Source: Holly and Hugo
Veterinary assistants help vet offices with front end duties like answering phones and scheduling appointments. This is a great entry-level career if you love animals. By completing a veterinary program, you can earn more as a technician and assist with surgeries and other procedures. You can earn $18,000 to $37,000.
4. Administrative assistant
Source: Her Campus
Also known as secretaries, administrative assistants handle front office duties, such as answering phones, filing, scheduling appointments and drafting correspondence. No experience is required, as long as you are organized and have good computer and communication skills. You can work your way up to executive assistant and see a much higher salary compared to entry level roles. Salary ranges from $21,000 to $52,000 ($52k and above for executive assistants with experience).
5. Truck driver
If you don’t mind driving large trucks or being away from home for days at a time, this may be a good gig for you. No experience is required, and some companies will even pay you to train and get your commercial driver’s license. Most hiring process will require a drug test and background check. Pay starts at around $27,000 annually and can go as high as $67,000.
6. Garbage collector
Source: The Star
You don’t need a college degree for a garbage collector position but you do need the ability to drive a garbage truck and lift heavy items. You’ll have to get up early, but this job offers great benefits. Pay ranges from $20,000 to $60,000.
7. Table games dealer
Source: Parx Casino
If you enjoy the casino environment and have good communication and math skills, you can work there as a table games dealer. However, these jobs are limited only to areas that have casinos. Some casinos will train you, although it’s better to have some experience or brief training. Salary ranges from $15,000 to $40,000.
Source: The Star
Many celebrity chefs started as cooks, and you can, too. If you love food and are detail-oriented, this is an exciting way to jumpstart your career. No experience is required, although a couple culinary courses wouldn’t hurt. Complete a full program and you’ll be on your way to working as a chef. Salaries range from $18,000 to $33,000.
Source: Workers Advisor
This might be a good job if you enjoy the outdoors and have an eye for design. No experience is required, although there are training programs that can better position you for a job. This type of experience can help you start your own business. Salary ranges from $18,000 to $40,000.
10. Library technician
Source: Bendigo Advertiser
If you love books, this might be your dream job. You don’t need the years of experience that a librarian needs in order to work in a library. Your job will be to help patrons and organize books. You must have great computer skills and be highly organized. Earnings start at around $21,000 and go up to about $43,000.
Source: Huffington Post
No formal experience is required, although some bartenders take classes to learn new drinks and improve their skills. If you like to talk to customers and don’t mind working night shifts, this could be a good job. Plus, you can make some decent tips. Salaries start at around $13,000 and can climb up to $47,000.
12. Security guard
Source: Student Society of UBC Vancouver
Security guards work in a variety of environments, from malls to airports to Homeland Security. A high school education is all you need plus, it's highly likely that you will be subjected to some drug and background tests. Some positions may require a firearms license as well. Salaries range from $18,000 to $39,000.
13. Delivery driver
Source: Google Commerce Blogspot
Many companies hire delivery drivers to drop off packages to customers and other businesses. Generally, the only requirement for these jobs is a driver’s license, and it’s a great way to get your foot into the door to a company for the long term. Salaries range from $17,000 to $46,000.
14. Real estate agent
Source: EZ Portland Homes
Believe it or not, you don’t need years of experience and education to sell houses. You do need a license, however, and that requires taking some courses. But once you do that and take an exam, you can sell houses and potentially make big money. Salaries range from $22,000 to $110,000.
15. Police officer
If you’ve dreamed of fighting crime, here’s your chance. Police work can be rewarding, but it’s a demanding and dangerous job. You don’t need a college education to become a police officer, but you will need to attend police academy if you’re selected. There are strict requirements that must be met. You are required to pass a series of background and drug tests. You can earn anywhere from $30,000 to $80,000 a year.
Some people have difficulty thriving in a school-like atmosphere, and that’s OK. Everybody is different, and if your life path doesn’t include college, you can still succeed in life. Gaining on-the-job experience can be more fulfilling than learning from expensive college textbooks anyway.