Highest Paying Jobs with Least Amount of Schooling

top paying jobs with little schooling

10 Occupational Therapist Aide – $27,430

An occupational therapist aide works under the direction of an occupational therapist. He assists in treating patients with disabilities, illnesses, or injuries through therapeutic use of everyday activities. These activities help patients develop, improve, and recover motor skills that are needed for daily living and working. Tasks can include setting up of equipment that will be used by patients. A high school diploma is normally sufficient to get this job and on the job training will be provided.

A real estate broker and sales agent help clients rent, buy, and sell real estate properties. A broker is licensed to manage his own real estate business, while a sales agent, who may also be required by some states to obtain a license, works with a broker. While no formal education is required for these jobs, an exam is usually a prerequisite to getting a license. Some states require candidates to be high school graduates, at least 18 years of age, and with a particular number of real estate courses. Connections and good networking skills are essential for this job as income is normally based on sales commissions.

Highest Paying Jobs with Least Amount of Schooling

For many people without a college degree, settling for low-paying jobs is the only way to earn a living. However, you can get several jobs even without extensive education in a variety of fields. We will discuss the highest paying jobs with the least amount of schooling in this article. Fortunately, you can get many of these jobs with a high school diploma and a few years of training.

Air traffic control specialist

The air traffic control specialist maintains safety in civil and military air operations. They ensure airplanes land and take off at a distance that prevents them from colliding with each other. An air control traffic specialist must be attentive and detail-oriented.

Criminal investigator

The duty of a criminal investigator is to collect evidence on cases, interview witnesses, and arrest suspects. You don’t need a bachelor’s degree to become a criminal investigator. Meanwhile, you can get a job as a criminal investigator if you have a high school certificate. In addition, you need to undergo a 2-year internship under a licensed criminal investigator.

Nuclear reactor operator

To become a nuclear reactor operator, you must have a high school diploma and pass the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) licensing exam. You will receive the training you need on the job.

Real estate broker

A real estate broker hires, trains, and supervises real estate agents. Just like real estate agents, they may also show and market homes and other buildings to buyers. Real estate brokers can start their real estate agency, a privilege ordinary real estate agents lack.

Aspiring real estate brokers must obtain a real estate agent license and earn three years of work experience as real estate agents. Also, they must pass the state licensing exam for real estate brokers.

Railroad conductor

Railroad conductors oversee all the activities on a train. They verify passenger tickets and resolve passenger complaints. To start a career as a railroad conductor, you must have a high school diploma. Also, some train services may require their railroad conductors to take a six-week training program before starting the job.

Roof bolter

Roof bolters fix bolts into the roofs of underground mines. They are also responsible for drilling the holes in the roof to accommodate the bolts. To get a job as a roof bolter, you must have a high school diploma. You can learn how to bolt a roof on the job.

Locomotive engineer

The duty of the locomotive engineer is to transport passengers and cargo across stations. Besides driving the train, she also monitors battery usage, speed, and other components that keep the train running. To become a qualified locomotive engineer, you must have a high school diploma and undergo a 3-month practical training.

Boiler operator

Boiler operators monitor, maintain, and repair boilers, which are vessels that contain fuel and gases. Boiler operators work at factories, warehouses, and power plants. To become a boiler operator, you must have a high school diploma and undergo a 4-year apprenticeship.

Truck driver

A truck driver transports goods from one point to another. He is also responsible for maintaining the truck, verifying packages, and loading cargo. To land a job as a commercial truck driver, you need a high school diploma and a Commercial Driver’s License. Obtaining a Commercial Driver’s License requires that you take a 6-week truck driver training program.

Property manager

To become a property manager, you must be a US citizen or a permanent resident older than 18 years. Also, you need to obtain a high school diploma and pass the licensing exam for property managers in your state.

Executive pastry chef

If you love to bake, becoming an executive pastry chef is a career you should consider. Executive pastry chefs recruit, train, and supervise the rest of the pastry staff at a hotel or fine dining restaurant. Sometimes, they may even be in charge of managing the budget of the kitchen.

Insurance appraiser

The primary role of insurance appraisers is to determine the value of insured items. They also decide the amount an insurance company should pay as claims on the insured property. To become an insurance appraiser, you only need to complete high school and take and pass a 20-hour Insurance Licensing course.


A plumber installs and repairs sinks, pipes, and bathtubs. Plumbers are indispensable. Even after installing a sink, you still need to call a plumber when it gets clogged from time to time. Although working as a plumber means you will spend a lot of time in uncomfortable places, it is very lucrative. To become a plumber, you need to obtain a high school diploma and spend two to five years as an apprentice.

HVAC Technician

HVAC technicians work on heating and air conditioning equipment in industrial, business, and residential settings. There are different types of HVAC tech programs including certificate training, diploma and associate degrees. These programs take from a few months to 2 years to complete. You can also find NATE technician training at some schools, for those who want to get NATE certified. Read about why you should hire NATE technicians, written by an HVAC company owner. It’ll give some context on the importance of NATE certification to some companies.

Web developers design and create websites, they control everything from how the website looks to how it works on the backend. The most common path for web developers is through a technical college where a 2 year associate’s degree can be earned. Some employers may look for web developers with a bachelor’s degree in computer science or another related field. Also, some experience with graphic design may be preferred.



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