In today’s competitive job market, finding a high-paying job without a college degree can be challenging. However, there are still many opportunities available for those without a degree who are motivated to succeed.
If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: some of the top jobs that pay around $25/hr with no degree required in 2023 include apprenticeships trades like electrician or plumber, jobs in the technology sector like computer support specialist or web developer, jobs in healthcare like surgical technologist or medical assistant, jobs in business/finance like insurance sales agent or loan officer, and jobs in the skilled trades like crane operator or elevator repairer.
In this detailed guide, we will explore 25 of the best jobs that pay around $25 per hour or more that do not require a college degree in 2023. For each job, we will overview the average salary, main job duties, and the education/training paths available to obtain the position.
Apprenticeship and Skilled Trades Jobs
Electricians are skilled tradespeople who specialize in electrical wiring and maintenance. They play a crucial role in ensuring that buildings have safe and functional electrical systems. Becoming an electrician typically requires completing an apprenticeship program, which combines on-the-job training with classroom instruction.
Apprenticeships can last anywhere from four to five years, depending on the program. Electricians earn a median hourly wage of $26.01, making it a lucrative career option without the need for a degree.
Plumbers are in high demand and are responsible for installing and repairing pipes and fixtures related to water supply, drainage, and heating systems. They work in residential, commercial, and industrial settings.
Plumbers usually undergo an apprenticeship program that provides hands-on training and education. In addition to a competitive salary, plumbers enjoy job stability and the opportunity to start their own businesses.
The median hourly wage for plumbers is $25.92, making it an attractive career path for those without a degree.
HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) technicians are skilled professionals who install, maintain, and repair heating and cooling systems in residential and commercial buildings. With the growing need for energy-efficient systems and the increasing complexity of HVAC technology, the demand for qualified technicians is on the rise.
HVAC technicians often complete a trade school program or an apprenticeship to gain the necessary skills and knowledge. They earn a median hourly wage of $24.67, making it a well-paying career option.
Crane operators are responsible for operating heavy machinery to lift and move heavy objects on construction sites, shipping yards, and other locations. They require specialized training and certification to operate cranes safely and efficiently.
Crane operators work in various industries, including construction, manufacturing, and transportation. The median hourly wage for crane operators is $26.46, making it a high-paying job that does not require a degree.
Elevator repairers, also known as elevator mechanics, are responsible for installing, maintaining, and repairing elevators, escalators, and other types of lifts. They work in commercial and residential buildings, ensuring that elevators are safe and functional.
Elevator repairers typically complete an apprenticeship program or receive training from a vocational school. With advancements in building technology, the demand for elevator repairers is expected to grow.
They earn a median hourly wage of $35.11, making it one of the highest-paying skilled trades jobs without a degree.
1. Computer Support Specialist
Computer support specialists play a crucial role in assisting individuals and organizations with their computer hardware and software issues. They provide technical support, troubleshoot problems, and offer solutions to ensure smooth functioning of computer systems.
With the increasing reliance on technology in various industries, the demand for computer support specialists is expected to grow. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for computer support specialists was $54,760 in 2020.
2. Web Developer
In 2020, the median annual wage for web developers was $77,200 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
3. IT Technician
IT technicians are responsible for the installation, maintenance, and repair of computer systems and networks. They ensure that hardware and software are functioning properly and provide technical support to end-users.
As technology continues to advance, the need for IT technicians is expected to grow. The median annual wage for IT technicians was $54,760 in 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
4. Computer Network Support Specialist
Computer network support specialists are responsible for ensuring the smooth operation of an organization’s computer networks. They analyze and troubleshoot network problems, install and configure network equipment, and provide technical support to network users.
The demand for computer network support specialists is expected to increase as businesses rely more on technology for their operations. The median annual wage for computer network support specialists was $63,460 in 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
5. Software Developer
Software developers are involved in the creation and development of computer programs and applications. They analyze user requirements, design software solutions, and write code to implement these solutions.
The demand for software developers is expected to grow as businesses and industries increasingly rely on software for their operations. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for software developers was $110,140 in 2020.
These technology jobs offer great earning potential and career opportunities, even without a degree. However, it is important to note that gaining relevant certifications and acquiring practical experience can significantly enhance job prospects and earning potential in these fields.
So, if you have a passion for technology and a willingness to learn, these jobs can be a pathway to a successful and well-paying career.
A surgical technologist, also known as a scrub tech, plays a crucial role in the operating room. They assist surgeons and nurses during surgical procedures by preparing the operating room, sterilizing equipment, and handing instruments to the surgical team.
Despite not requiring a degree, surgical technologists receive extensive training to ensure they can handle the demands of the job. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for surgical technologists is $48,300.
This means that a surgical technologist can earn around $25 per hour, making it a rewarding career option without the need for a degree.
Medical assistants are a vital part of any healthcare team. They perform administrative tasks, such as scheduling appointments and maintaining patient records, as well as clinical tasks like taking vital signs and assisting with examinations.
The demand for medical assistants is expected to grow in the coming years, making it a promising career choice. The median annual wage for medical assistants is $34,800, which is approximately $17 per hour.
However, with experience and specialization, medical assistants can earn upwards of $25 per hour.
Dental hygienists are responsible for cleaning teeth, examining patients for oral diseases, and providing preventive dental care. They work closely with dentists to ensure the overall oral health of patients.
Becoming a dental hygienist typically requires an associate degree, but it’s a career that offers excellent earning potential. According to the American Dental Hygienists’ Association, the median annual wage for dental hygienists is $76,220, which translates to approximately $36.64 per hour.
With the right experience and expertise, dental hygienists can easily earn $25 per hour or more.
Radiologic technologists, also known as radiographers, perform diagnostic imaging examinations, such as X-rays and CT scans. They work closely with doctors to capture images that help diagnose and treat various medical conditions.
In addition to operating imaging equipment, radiologic technologists also ensure patient safety and comfort during procedures. The median annual wage for radiologic technologists is $63,710, which is approximately $30.62 per hour.
With their specialized skills, radiologic technologists can easily earn $25 per hour or more.
Respiratory therapists play a crucial role in assisting patients with breathing difficulties. They evaluate, treat, and care for patients with respiratory disorders, such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Respiratory therapists work closely with physicians to develop treatment plans and monitor patient progress. According to the American Association for Respiratory Care, the median annual wage for respiratory therapists is $61,330, which equates to approximately $29.49 per hour.
With their expertise in respiratory care, these professionals can earn $25 per hour or more.
Business and Finance Jobs
Insurance Sales Agent
Insurance sales agents play a crucial role in the business and finance industry. They are responsible for selling insurance policies to individuals and businesses. With a high earning potential, insurance sales agents can earn an average of $25 per hour.
These professionals work closely with clients to assess their insurance needs and provide them with suitable coverage options. They must have excellent communication and negotiation skills to effectively explain complex policies and persuade potential clients to purchase insurance plans.
To excel in this field, insurance sales agents must stay updated on industry trends and regulations.
Loan officers are essential in facilitating loans for individuals and businesses. They assess loan applications, evaluate the creditworthiness of borrowers, and determine the terms and conditions of loans. Loan officers earn an average of $25 per hour, making it a lucrative career option.
They must possess strong analytical skills to evaluate financial documents and make informed decisions. Additionally, loan officers need to have excellent interpersonal skills to build relationships with clients and financial institutions.
A solid understanding of lending regulations and market trends is vital in this role.
Real Estate Appraiser
Real estate appraisers are responsible for estimating the value of properties. They play a crucial role in the buying and selling process by providing accurate and unbiased property valuations. With an average hourly wage of $25, real estate appraisers enjoy a rewarding career.
These professionals conduct thorough research and analysis to determine the market value of properties. They consider factors such as location, condition, and comparable sales to arrive at an accurate appraisal.
Real estate appraisers must possess strong attention to detail and have a deep understanding of the real estate market.
Court reporters are integral to the legal system as they transcribe spoken or recorded speech into written form. They ensure an accurate record of legal proceedings, depositions, and other events. Court reporters earn an average of $25 per hour and play a vital role in the business and finance industry.
These professionals must possess exceptional listening and typing skills to capture every word accurately. They use specialized equipment to transcribe conversations in real-time or from recorded audio. Court reporters must also maintain confidentiality and adhere to ethical standards.
Paralegals provide valuable support to attorneys and law firms. They assist with legal research, drafting documents, and managing case files. With an average hourly wage of $25, paralegals enjoy a rewarding career in the business and finance industry.
These professionals must have excellent organizational and research skills to effectively support legal teams. They play a crucial role in preparing for trials, drafting contracts, and conducting client interviews. Paralegals must possess a strong understanding of legal terminology and procedures.
Other Well-Paying Jobs Without a Degree
Air Traffic Controller
While many well-paying jobs require a college degree, there are some lucrative career paths that do not. One such example is becoming an air traffic controller. Air traffic controllers are responsible for managing the flow of air traffic to ensure the safe and efficient movement of planes.
With an average salary of $122,990 per year, this career offers excellent earning potential without a college degree.
Another high-paying job that doesn’t require a degree is that of a nuclear technician. These professionals work in nuclear power plants, assisting with the operation, maintenance, and repair of nuclear equipment.
With an average salary of $82,080 per year, nuclear technicians can earn a comfortable income without pursuing a four-year degree.
Transportation inspectors play a crucial role in ensuring the safety and compliance of various modes of transportation, such as airplanes, trains, and buses. These professionals inspect vehicles, equipment, and operations to identify any potential safety issues.
With an average salary of $75,820 per year, transportation inspectors can enjoy a well-paying career without a college degree.
Power Plant Operator
Power plant operators are responsible for operating and maintaining the machinery and equipment used in generating electricity. They monitor systems, make adjustments, and troubleshoot issues to ensure smooth and efficient operations.
With an average salary of $83,020 per year, power plant operators can earn a competitive income without a bachelor’s degree.
Becoming a police officer is a noble and rewarding career choice that doesn’t require a college degree. Police officers work to protect and serve their communities, enforcing laws and ensuring public safety.
While salaries may vary depending on location and experience, the average salary for a police officer is around $65,170 per year.
It’s important to note that while a college degree may not be required for these jobs, they often require specialized training, certifications, or apprenticeships. Additionally, gaining relevant experience in the field can greatly enhance job prospects and earning potential.
So, if you’re looking for well-paying jobs without a degree, consider exploring these career paths that offer great opportunities for success.
While going to college is still a great way to access higher-paying professional jobs, there are still many opportunities in today’s job market to earn around $25/hr or more with just a high school diploma and proper training.
The jobs highlighted in this article run the gamut from skilled trades to technology to healthcare and beyond.
By pursuing vocational training programs, certification courses, on-the-job training, or apprenticeships, you can develop the skills needed to qualify for these lucrative roles without four years of college.
If you’re looking to start a career that offers good pay and future growth, focus on your unique interests and talents to find the right fit from this list of top-paying jobs with no degree.