Warning: This article is also addressed to those who have spent their lives in school! They must not envy the others who make more than them. Everyone’s got his/her place on earth and his/her own mission to accomplish.
Getting rich without going to school! Sounds dreamlike, doesn’t it? That is, unless your family is among the top 500 richest families in the world.
Contrary to what we are told, there is much more than studying in life. You can work without holding a bachelor’s degree and earn a lot of money. Be careful, this does not mean that you don’t need any qualifications or that you should forgo college. It just means that you aren’t doomed to financial insecurity without a diploma in hand.
Simply put, don’t panic: there are other options that require both the ability and the openness to learn new things, as well as certain skills.
All the salaries may vary, depending on the work conditions, the experience as well as on other criteria specific to each of the jobs listed below.
15. Subway And Streetcar Operators
These operators whose annual salary varies around the amount of $62,730 need courses in mechanics, business, physical education and driver’s education.
It doesn’t seem like the hardest job on earth, but let me add some of the duties they have: evacuating subway passengers from trains and reporting scheduled delays to supervisors.
Nowadays, these operators don’t drive trains manually as they have computerized steering mechanisms, but these operators still have to regulate the speed of the vehicle.
Most of these operators attend on-the-job training for this position.
It is quite a risky job as the safety of the people getting on and off the vehicles depends on them. Therefore, they must pay attention to the light signals that always indicate some problems – technical or mechanical issues they have to notify to the dispatchers and to other supervisors, via the radios.
14. Gas Plant Operators
With an average annual salary of $65,830, a gas plant operator’s job is very dangerous, because they often have to deal with hazardous materials, as indicated by the definition of their job. Although much of the training is done on-site, a two-year vocational or technical program that includes courses in chemistry, physics and mechanical equipment is usually recommended.
Even if you think it’s not a big deal, don’t forget that the job is performed mostly in factories and plant settings, with shifts and hours that can vary and which do not allow for much professional and personal growth and development.
13. Petroleum Pump Operators
Another quite dangerous job, although with an average remuneration of $66,020 per year, is a petroleum pump operator.
These operators often deal with hazardous materials while inspecting equipment and structures, dealing with pumps noises and petroleum odor.
Therefore, all their senses are awakened: smell, to detect a gas leak; sight, to locate a leak; hearing, to hear a different sound and touch, to feel the vibrations caused by the abnormal passage of a leak in a pipe.
Agility is also required, since objects need to be moved and installed, meaning lifting, climbing and balancing are the main body movements to be performed.
12. Makeup Artists
Is there anyone who doesn’t want to look good? Who do you call when you need a professional makeup job or some tips on how to look good without too much effort? A makeup artist, of course.
With an average payroll of $66,560 annually, this job is much more stressful and demanding than you could imagine, as many things depend on good makeup: the first impression at a job interview or on a first date, for example.
Many makeup artists work with celebrities and it isn’t easy at all to satisfy their every whim. Let’s also add that these artists apply makeup to performers to reflect the setting and the period of their roles as well as their mood.
11. Creative Writers
This job is often confused with content writers, especially nowadays, where content writers are in high demand. You’re definitely wrong if you make such a confusion!
With an annual average income of $69,130, these writers create original written works, such as prose, poetry, scripts or song lyrics, both for performance and for publication. Don’t forget that self-employment is another option. But its disadvantage is that you never know what tomorrow brings!
It doesn’t sound difficult, as it simply requires creativity and vivid imagination, first in the mind and then on paper.
10. Web Developers
Have you got your own business? Do you plan to take the entrepreneurial route?
If you answered “yes” at least once, I presume you know that this job is in high demand and it is not easy to have a professional site that can literally sell your business.
Their average income is of $70,660 a year, but it also may vary depending on the number of freelance projects accepted.
We all like interesting and attractive sites and are in search of the most catchy designs for our customers, but we rarely know that it requires knowledge of both graphic design and programming – there’s a lot of work behind the technical aspects and the performance and capacities of a website.
There is no book on how to become a good web developer, as the web has not been developed using a book. The best way to learn coding is by simply coding yourself. Most of the people in this domain are self-trained.
9. Diagnostic Medical Sonographers
Although the market is over-saturated in some parts of the world – in the USA or Canada, for instance, where medical sonographers have a median income of $70,880 – there is a high demand of specialist in others parts of the world; in Eastern Europe, for example, although for a lower pay. Anyway, this job will be in even higher demand in the future, as there are many countries whose population is aging, and is going to have more and more health problems.
Classroom and clinical training are required in order to become a sonographer, plus ultrasound physics courses and hundreds of hours on-site, where they have to get used to both the equipment, the techniques and the protocols.
Statistics indicate that even if there is quite a high number of schools that also provide a degree in this field, less employees are interested in it; there are other skills and qualities that prevail, such as dexterity in both arms. What? Yes, the left arm operates the machine while the right hand scans. How many of us are ambidextrous?
8. Commercial Pilots
Is flying your biggest dream in life? Would you like to have an annual salary of $73,280? I’m sure it’s not easy to say “no”.
But, you must not suppose that a commercial pilot is the synonym of an airline pilot, otherwise you’ll be shocked to find out that commercial pilots can only be tour pilots, cargo pilots or backcountry pilots. They can also be flight instructors, a very trendy job nowadays.
Another detail that I’m sure you were not aware of is that you need to hold a private pilot certificate and, in order to get a commercial pilot license, at least 250 hours of training.
The most important detail that most people ignore, is that their health must be perfect!
7. Loan Officers
They work in banks and have an annual median income of $75,170. You’d say it’s not much for a person working in a bank, wouldn’t you? Well, because most of them work on commissions, their pay also depends on these commissions, therefore their income may vary a lot, from smaller branches to large banks.
While in smaller branches the only loan applications covered might be car loans or mortgage loans, in larger branches loan officers have greater responsibilities such as approving or denying commercial loan applications or acting as sales persons.
Most of them only have a high school diploma, and for the moment, they are not required to have a bachelor’s degree in accounting or business. Though, they are required to take continuing education courses and must not have felony convictions.
It doesn’t seem very difficult, does it? At least, not from the outside, but good communication skills are on the top of the requirements when applying for such a job. And we all know how hard and embarrassing it might be to speak to people! Plus math skills are also a must!
6. Elevator Installers And Repairers
Have you ever got stuck in an elevator? I hope you haven’t as it isn’t the best experience ever, especially if you suffer from claustrophobia or if you’re afraid of heights. On the other hand, if you haven’t, you can really appreciate the work of these people, whose annual wage is of around $76,650.
It is a well-paid job that requires no other diploma than the high-school degree and a lot of on-site training. All they have to do is to assemble install and repair elevators, dumbwaiters, escalators and any other similar equipment. They need to be very good in physics and technical matters and to have good manual dexterity.
5. Gaming Managers
Their annual average salary is $77,770, but it may also vary, depending on commissions. You’d say it is not fair, as there are other people who work more and have more responsibilities and are paid less.
But have you been to a casino lately? There is much to do in a busy casino, as you can see by yourself in a lot of movies. Or you can simply Google to find out more about what this job entails.
These managers have to be up-to-date with the latest gaming laws and apply them properly. They have to explain the house rules, such as betting limits or game rules to new workers and new players, they monitor their subordinates, they train new workers and keep attendance records.
When it comes to clients, they must assess the client’s needs and do their best to satisfy these needs. They also deal with suspected cheaters, such as card counters, who they have to remove. And much more!
4. Police Detectives
It is a childhood dream to become a police detective, isn’t it? To catch the bad guys, to have a gun, to fight and always win, and so on. Does it sound familiar? I’m sure it does for some of you. The salary is not low, it is averaged to $79,620 annually.
But there is much more to the job than what we see on the big screen.
There are certain police departments that would rather hire applicants with some college diploma, but most of the candidates are required to have high school degrees. Their qualifications vary, depending on the agency that employs them.
They work as investigators as their main responsibilities involve responding to emergencies, patrolling, issuing citations, interviewing witnesses and suspects.
It is a very stressful job, therefore they have to be able to handle high-stress situations and pressure. Emotional stability is also a must, as they often examine violent and terrifying crime scenes.
Finally, a job that is performed outside the office! Athletes never need an office, thus reducing the employer staff and consumables costs. Plus, their average annual salary turns around the amount of $80,490. Sounds interesting, doesn’t it?
The professional athletes list is quite long and it includes anybody who plays a sport for money. Fans enjoy seeing them playing and are willing to pay to see them perform. Therefore, professional athletes are both performers and entertainers, just like musicians and actors. They either perform well in each and every game or they risk losing, thus not lasting for long in this field.
During the regular season, these athletes often work more than 40 hours a week and in addition, they have to go to meetings, especially in the afternoons, or spend their evenings, even on weekends, watching their opponents’ matches. Plus, they often move to the place where their team is located. They move quite a lot, especially if the management also decides to trade them.
And, the icing on the cake, they risk a lot of very serious injuries that could simply end their careers, thus being forced to go through the professional reconverting process.
2. Financial Service Sales Agents
This position has been declining lately, but it still remains among one of the most well-paid jobs on the market, with an average annual salary of $102,860.
As the name of the job indicates, it is about selling a lot of unique financial services, such as banking services, life insurance, investments and even retail mutual funds.
More and more people think of their future and want to make it as secure as possible, both for themselves and for their children or grand-children, therefore they need such an agent.
The roles and the duties of financial service sales agents vary a lot, based on the employer’s requirements. One of the most tricky responsibilities is to carefully analyze the security risks after having previously determined the client’s unique financial needs. It can’t be easy as nobody knows what will happen in future!
1. Air Traffic Controllers
Although you might think that you need to attend a college-level air traffic control training program in order to have such a well-paid job (with a $107,600 average annual wage) there are other ways you can become an air traffic controller, either by having a previous military air traffic control experience – which is quite rare, let’s admit it – or by applying for a general public position, which implies college studies and years of full-time work experience.
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