1. UPS Truck Driver – $84,000
UPS does not require that their drivers are college educated and they provide full training for entry-level drivers. If you don’t have experience driving a box truck, try starting with UPS sorting mail and packages – they have a great “promote from within” environment!
2. Rope Access Technician – $50,000 + (no exp)
When ropes are necessary for construction projects, oil rigs or other, Rope Access Technicians are the ones that get things set up. For those unafraid of heights, dangling thousands of feet above the ground off of an iron beam or girder can pay off really well.
3. Tradesman – $35 – 60 / hour
Trades have long been the go-to route for a decent, middle-class life. Decent hourly wages and benefits are available regardless of whether you become a bricklayer or a carpenter. Electricians and plumbers are also great options, and the economy doesn’t limit the availability of work.
4. Prostitute – $100 – $500 / half hour
Naturally, this is not an option everywhere (legally). However, in some places, like Nevada, for example, it is entirely possible to enter the exciting lifestyle of a prostitute within the full legal privilege. So long as you’re willing to turn tricks for cash, it’s possible to earn hundreds to thousands of dollars in a single night!
5. Salesman – $50,000 +
Sales is an interesting career because you write your own checks – in essence, depending on how like-able and good you are, your income could be anywhere from non-existent to astronomical. Some products offer commissions of hundreds per sale. If you’re a born sales wizard, that could equate into thousands per week, without special training or education!
6. Truck Driver – $40,000 +
Driving is a great job for those that like being alone, who also have a restless need to travel. Truck driving allows you to see parts of the country you’d never otherwise see, and it also pays well. Many trucking companies even offer to cover your training so long as you sign a commitment to their company as a driver once you pass.
7. Underwater Welder – $40 / hour + overtime
While this position doesn’t necessarily involve a traditional college degree, there is a lot of job-specific training that one must go through to become an underwater welder. This job is extraordinarily dangerous and can be stressful. If you’ve got the stomach for it, you could be earning major bucks doing something extremely unique and interesting.
8. Oil Rig Worker – $100,000 +
Oil rigs are dangerous places full of heavy equipment and hard-working employees. Employees are often expected to work solid 70-hour weeks, straight. Oil rigs are often in the middle of the ocean, so employees must be willing to work long and strong in order to sustain the operation.
9. Emergency Hazmat Cleanup – $60,000 +
When poison or bio-hazardous material makes its way into places where it shouldn’t be, hazmat cleanup teams come in and ensure the safety of the area. While there are safety standards and some professional practices to learn, no college degree is necessary to obtain a hazmat cleanup job.
10. Professional Athlete – $1 – 100 million
As rare an opportunity as exists in this world, becoming a professional athlete is hands down the most profitable way to earn a living without a college degree. Note, this profession requires not only absolute dedication to your sport, it also requires a good bit of natural talent – every high school in the world grooms athletes for collegian sports. It’s no small wonder that only the crème de le crème get drafted into the professional leagues.
11. Freelance Design and Video Professional – $25 – 50 / hour
Becoming a graphic designer or video editor can be a route through college, however, the programs required for both of these professions are readily explained in DIY videos online. Because the software and knowledge thereof largely determines the ability of a graphic designer or video editor, it is entirely possible to self-study these programs and become adept enough to get noticed by large companies that will pay $20… $30… $50 per hour or more for your skill.
12. Air Traffic Controller – $100,000 +
Air Traffic Controllers have long been the positions that tout great incomes without the requirement of the college. Claimed to be a high-stress environment, an air traffic tower is a network of highly technical machinery and constant human communication. If you thrive on pressure and are a keen observer, air traffic control may be a profitable career for you.
13. C++ Developer – $75,000 +
C++ is a computer language that many of today’s video games are programmed with – it is frequently taught in IT colleges, but it isn’t necessarily difficult to learn. C++ requires a considerable amount of memorization: syntax structure and commands can be thrown off by a single keystroke error, causing millions of lines of code to operate ineffectively. For those with extreme attention to detail and lots of patience, a computer programming position can be very lucrative.
14. Mailman – $18 / hour
Mailmen are paid pretty well for their stead of service: you either drive or walk your route and drop off / pick up mail. That’s it. For this gargantuan task, the Federal government pays their carriers at an average of $18 per hour. As with most government jobs, being a mailman comes with great benefits and a cushy income.
15. Garbage Man – $40,000 +
Garbage men aren’t the prima donnas of the work world: they’re the opposite. They do the job that no one else wants. Because of that, they get paid pretty well, too. $40,000 salaries are not unheard of, and, there are no educational requirements for the job. If you can handle the smell behind the truck all day, you could be earning $40k annually!