Friday, September 17, 2010

25 of the Highest Paying Jobs Don't Require College Degrees

I must have covered this sort of story before, but it hurts every time I see it.  And the common denominator is the inability of Big Business to outsource the work:
...According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), eight of the 10 fastest-growing occupations through 2014 don't require a bachelor's degree. And these jobs, which include health technology, plumbing, firefighting and automotive repair, are less vulnerable to outsourcing. After all, if a fire breaks out, you need the fire department to be a few blocks away, not halfway around the world.
Good point. That's why lawyers and factory workers are equally screwed.  So, here are the jobs. Read 'em and weep!

1. Air traffic controller: $102,030

2. Funeral director: $79,517

3. Operations manager: $77,839

4. Industrial production manager: $73,000

5. Transportation manager: $72,662

6. Storage and distribution manager: $69,898

7. Computer technical support specialist: $67,689

8. Gaming manager: $64,880

9. First-line supervisor/manager of police and detective: $64,430

10. Nuclear power reactor operator: $64,090

11. Computer specialist: $59,480

12. First-line, non-retail supervisors/manager: $59,300

13. Nuclear technician: $59,200

14. First-line supervisor/manager of fire fighting and prevention worker: $58,920

15. Real estate broker: $58,720

16. Elevator installer and repairer: $58,710

17. Sales representative, wholesale and manufacturing, technical and scientific products: $58,580

18. Dental hygienist: $59,790

19. Radiation therapist: $57,700

20. Nuclear medicine technologist: $56,450

21. Power plant distributor and dispatcher: $57,330

22. Fashion designer: $55,840

23. Ship engineer: $54,950

24. Detective and criminal investigator: $53,990

25. Commercial pilot: $53,870

I wish I were a Funeral Director.  Working with the dead has always appealed to me. Oh well!
Thanks BIDER tipster.  This particular tipster sends me stories all the time.  I really appreciate it. You should comment some time, girlie!


  1. Nuclear power reactor operator. Why is it that running nuclear reactor doesn't require a degree?
    I guess that explains Homer Simpson.

  2. maybe it's time to change the name of the blog from BIDER to 'I guess I did everything wrong!'

  3. Forget about the bill in subcommittee for the time being. What we should be talking about is Elizabeth Warren's appointment to head the new consumer protection agency, which has student lending within its purview. The agency may not be able to do anything about bankruptcy law, but it can do a lot about student lenders' practices, and yet, no one is talking about it. Another opportunity to push our cause missed because of a complete failure to get organized.

  4. I have a feeling that our generation is going to be dissuading our kids from post-grad degrees and maybe even college...unlike our parents and family.

  5. "After all, if a fire breaks out, you need the fire department to be a few blocks away, not halfway around the world."

    Now, this is helpful - because without this explication, I would NEVER have been able to figure out why firefighting would be "less vulnerable" to outsourcing.

    But why is automotive repair in there? Why can't I just put my car on an ocean liner and take it to a mechanic in India? Please explain that one. And plumbing - what's that doing on the list? It's not like pipes can't be torn out and mailed to a Chinese plumber who won't charge $75 an hour.

    (Note to the moron who wrote the quoted sentence: sometimes you just have to trust that your readers aren't quite as stupid as you are, y'know?)

  6. Did I mention I seriously considered becoming a LAPD police officer? It pays more than my last (15 years out) law job. My DH, a fellow T14 graduate actively encouraged me.

  7. @6:53 - Um, the same Elizabeth Warren who's profiting ( from selling overpriced textbooks to students on credit who will soon have non-dischargeable debt?

  8. You do have to go to college for Air Traffic Controller. However, the government tends to pay for your education on that one. It is one of those great jobs no one talks about.

    The five highest paying jobs (not on the list by-the-way) I know of that you can flunk out of high school and get are:

    1)union longshoreman or stevedore in the larger west coast ports or Miami.
    2)Evangelical preacher.
    3)Harbor pilot - you need to be born or married into this one.
    4)Lineman for utility company in a hurricane zone. (100K + 3 years after getting job)
    5)Towboat captain (Can get to this within 3 years of on the job training)

  9. Speaking of Air Traffic Controllers, I think it was in Matthew Crawford's book that it said that air traffic controllers perform worse the more eduation they have.

  10. @ 9:20 - Is that a serious comment?

  11. When writing a blog with numerous posts deconstructing the statistics that overstate attorney salaries, isn't it bad form to take the surprisingly high salaries listed in this article at face value? Shouldn't they be subject to a similar measure of healthy skepticism?

    I enjoy this site, and encourage you to maintain your credibility.

  12. Where I live it's very hard to become a police officer. The test is every 4 years and they barely take anyone. A ton of former lawyers become cops, it pays a lot. They make 6 figures with OT easily.

    Incidentally my county is in serious financial debt and taxes us all to hell and back. We have red light cameras everywhere and our cops do little more than ticket everyone they see, because there actually isn't any crime out here.

  13. Maybe some of these jobs don't require college degrees by letter of law, but they're still damn hard to get and most of the time they will end up going with someone who has a degree or lucked into some substantial experience. For example, manager of firefighting? Could easily go to someone who has a masters in firefighting - I know someone in that program who got in with an engineering background.

  14. hi angel! reminds me of my family in the old grandparents didn't have college degrees and my grandfather had a lot of success as an entrepeneur (grandmother was the right hand--also no degree and one of the smartest most intuitive people i've ever met). . they never had debt, and already distributed a lot of their wealth to their children..just food for thought..your friend, the tipster.

  15. 1. Air traffic controller: $102,030 (High attrition rate in school and beyond.)

    2. Funeral director: $79,517 (This one makes sense. Business is always good. One good plague and you are set for life.)

    3. Operations manager: $77,839 (Many years before you get there.)

    4. Industrial production manager: $73,000 (See above.)

    5. Transportation manager: $72,662 (Less time needed, and a good gig if you can get it.)

    6. Storage and distribution manager: $69,898 (All the managers. The world needs ditch diggers, thank you Caddyshack.)

    7. Computer technical support specialist: $67,689 (English has to be a second language.)

    8. Gaming manager: $64,880 (For the first time, a recession has actually hurt gaming and alcohol sales. Tough job to get.)

    9. First-line supervisor/manager of police and detective: $64,430 (Many places pay way more than this.)

    10. Nuclear power reactor operator: $64,090 (Military background w/o degree is a must.)

    11. Computer specialist: $59,480 (Internet porn surfer? Sweet.)

    12. First-line, non-retail supervisors/manager: $59,300 (Yes, everyone walks into a supervisor job. No one currently working there wants those jobs.)

    13. Nuclear technician: $59,200 (See above.)

    14. First-line supervisor/manager of fire fighting and prevention worker: $58,920 (See above.)

    15. Real estate broker: $58,720 (If you can scam folks, why did you not make it in law?)

    16. Elevator installer and repairer: $58,710 (Union thing?)

    17. Sales representative, wholesale and manufacturing, technical and scientific products: $58,580 (Seems like a bit much.)

    18. Dental hygienist: $59,790 (Better than an anal hygienist I would imagine.)

    19. Radiation therapist: $57,700 (Everest Institute baby)

    20. Nuclear medicine technologist: $56,450 (This is a good gig.)

    21. Power plant distributor and dispatcher: $57,330 (See above)

    22. Fashion designer: $55,840 (Wal Mart shopping does not qualify one for this, amazingly enough.)

    23. Ship engineer: $54,950 (Military background)

    24. Detective and criminal investigator: $53,990 (Being on the take helps up this amount. Try New Orleans or Tijuana.)

    25. Commercial pilot: $53,870 (Barefoot bandit did it, you can too.)

  16. One problem with being a funeral director is that you are constantly dealing with people who are in a vulnerable emotional state. To make a lot of money, you need to convince these people to spend a lot of money on a lot of fancy s*** which they don't really need.

  17. Life isn't easy when there aren't many jobs, and the jobs that are available barely pay enough to cover cost of living, let alone student loan payments.

    The U.S. Power Elites don't care. Their vision of the future is one where national boundary lines are blurred and eventually erased; "GLOBALIZATION" is what they call it. They don't care where the profits are coming from, so long as the profits keep coming. This is why they continue to do things like offshoring jobs and running up the national debt while cutting taxes for the rich that run counter to their country's national interests. When you realize that their goals are the weakening and eventual melding of the U.S. into a one-world government controlled by financiers, it makes more sense. See the big picture and the details will fall into place. Call it "conspiracy theory" if you want, but the facts speak for themselves.

    What's to stop the Elites' plan? In my opinion, the U.S. people are WEAK. They're bloated, lazy, and unwilling to take risks and do things to challenge the status-quo. Revolution? HA!! Hard to be a revolutionary when you're weak and afraid. Let's see if prolonged unemployment and a drastic lowering of the standard of living turns the U.S. Common Folk into lean, mean fighting machines ready to pounce, instead of weaklings who are easily led to slaughter.

    The Elites need to be put in fear, similar to the fear they were put in during the French Revolution. Imminent fear of bodily harm. Very basic, very crude.

    We've been brainwashed to find "peaceful solutions" to everything, that in 'civilized society' violence is never an answer, but peaceful solutions don't always work, especially in life-or-death situations.

    A good example of when a "peaceful solution" won't work is when you've backed an animal into a corner. I can guarantee you that there will be violence in that situation, that taking the so-called "high road" will be useless and will result in the passive death of the cornered animal. The only chance that cornered animal will have to survive is to violently attack whoever or whatever is cornering it. No guarantee of success, but at least they're going down fighting, rather than taking the "high road" that's useless in this situation.

  18. a cremeation, a paper bag and a body of water or field is all that is needed. And you fertilize the planet.

  19. Somebody needs a high powered rifle, a clock tower, and a hug.

  20. I donno, "computer specialist" and "computer technical support specialist" both sound pretty outsource-friendly.

    Additionally, I think there are jobs that are not outsource-friendly that have been hit. I know a lot of auto-mechanics (my dad has been in the automotive industry in one capacity or another all his life) are feeling a serious squeeze.

  21. Meanwhile, your favorite paper and the College Board says it's worth it:

  22. You should get a morticians license and become a funteral director. I heard of a guy who's dad owned a funeral home. 15 years ago, he graduated from law school, and while looking for a legal job, came back to work at the family business. A corpse came in all mauled up. The family was devastated. "There was a car accident, and then the doctor messed up the surgery." the parents said.
    "Don't worry" said the unemployed lawyer/funeral director. "Why don't you talk to my friend X, who's an attorney, he can help you. And I'll throw in the funeral expenses for free." He sent them to the best PI lawyer in the city and got his 1/3.

    He stopped looking for legal work and took over the funeral parlor. He's sent dozens of cases to the PI lawyer and now negotiates for more than a third. He's also never taken a deposition, done a trial, or appeared in court.

    You should look into mortuary school. An unemployed lawyer could do much worse. LOL



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