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Six-Figure Jobs for People Without a Degree

Individuals who have decided to skip getting a college degree still are left with a variety of very high-paying career options. An individual's specific skills and areas of interest will help them determine what field is right for them.

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Career Options for Six-Figure Jobs for People Without a Degree

Though it may seem like it is absolutely necessary to have a college degree in order to gain access to high paying jobs, there are a number of career options that pay very well that do not necessarily require a degree. These jobs are in a variety of different fields, from real estate to heavy machinery, and employees in these jobs have the potential to make six-figure salaries. Below we will discuss five different career options in which employees in the top 10% of their field are making above $100,000 per year.

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Top 10% Salary (2016)* Job Growth (2014-2024)*
Aerospace Technicians $68,020 $102,000 4%
Real Estate Brokers $56,790 $162,260 2%
Web Developers $66,130 $119,550 27%
Property Managers $57,040 $126,390 8%
Power Plant Operators, Distributors, and Dispatchers $78,370 $105,730 -6%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Information for Six-Figure Jobs for People Without a Degree

Aerospace Technician

As an aerospace technician, you will be responsible for the maintenance of equipment that is used when testing various aircraft and spacecraft. This job involves running automated computer programs that run tests on the pieces of equipment. If a problem does arise, then the technician tries to fix the equipment and runs the test again to make sure it is operating smoothly. They keep a record of all the equipment and when the last maintenance checks were done in case there is a crash or emergency. While some technicians may have an associate's degree, others just have a certificate or diploma from a vocational school. Technicians in the top of the field earn just over $100,000 per year.

Real Estate Broker

Real estate brokers are a type of real estate sales agent, but they manage their own business. They sell real estate, including homes and businesses, that is owned by others. They may have a team of real estate agents working for them to find new properties to list and sell. A broker works with a client who either wants to sell or buy a property. They often are responsible for mediating talks between the buyer and the seller of a property, which includes helping them agree on a price and the terms of the sale. Brokers with a lot of business who own their own company have the potential to easily make a six-figure salary. To become a broker, you have to complete some real estate courses and pass a licensing exam.

Web Developer

Web developers are the minds behind the creation of websites. They work with clients to discuss what kind of website they are envisioning - the style, technical capabilities, and how much traffic they expect. Then they begin creating the website by writing code, creating graphics and text, and adding different features to the site. They may work with other professionals, like graphic designers, depending on their own design capabilities. To become a web developer, the requirements vary by job. While some jobs may require a degree if they are heavy on computer programming, others will hire employees with only a high school diploma if they have the necessary skills. Some web developers at the top of their field make over $120,000 per year.

Property Manager

As a property manager, you are in charge of making sure properties are taken care of, have a clean and nice appearance, and are ready to show to prospective buyers. Some property managers may be in charge of residential communities. Their responsibilities include making sure residents pay monthly fees, supervising other employees, making sure the property remains clean, meeting with potential new renters/owners, and dealing with any complaints. To become a property manager, it may be helpful to have a background in real estate if you only have a high school diploma. Some property managers make over $125,000 per year, depending on the type and location of the property they manage.

Power Plant Operator, Distributor, or Dispatcher

Power plant operators, distributors, and dispatchers have slightly different job roles, but in general are responsible for operating equipment that generates electricity. They are responsible for making sure equipment is functioning properly, making adjustments to control the flow of electricity as necessary, and being able to read different charts and gauges in order to know how much electricity is being used. While a degree is not necessary, a career in this field will require heavy on-the-job training, as the job could be dangerous. Some particular operators may be required to be licensed. Professionals in this field could earn a six-figure salary, depending on their location and what specific field they work within.

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