In one of my postings last week, I looked at three particular career fields that did not require a four-year degree, and that had better than average starting salaries and growth potentials. This week, I would like to look at another three career fields. As touched on last week, these types of jobs are just a few of the eighty or so that fall into this category, all that have an average starting salary of $50K, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. (You can check the latest edition of Occupational Outlook Quarterly for up-to-date listings of additional jobs and information in this area.)
Because of the ever changing market and technology, many jobs are being reduced, totally changed beyond recognition, or phased out completely. Because of this, returning to school for up-to-date additional training may be a requirement, but in some cases, a total change in career path may be desired. The type of profitable jobs that do not require a full four-year degree are good positions to consider if you have chosen to change fields completely.
These positions can usually be obtained with just an associate's degree. Last week we looked at nuclear technicians, funeral services, and air-traffic controllers. Here are three more examples of the types in this category:
Respiratory Therapist: With an average starting pay of $54K and a projected job growth of 28% by the end of the decade, this is one of the fastest growing jobs in the health industry. If you can work with patients who are having breathing issues or need breathing related testing, this is the place to be. This position is typically done in a hospital, but some therapists work out of places like nursing homes or even directly in patient homes. Requirements vary depending on your state of residence, but usually require an associate's degree in respiratory therapy as well as a state-required license.
Occupational Therapy Assistant: Another health related career with an expectation of decent growth through the end of the decade due to the baby-boomer surge, this position has an average starting income of $51K. In this career, you’ll work with patients, setting up equipment and assisting them in exercises that help in rehabilitation after an injury or disease. This field also requires an associate's degree and state-required license.
Electrical and Electronics Drafters: Are you a techy type of person that enjoys electronics and a computer based desk job? This career field involves taking the plans of an engineer and transforming them into the computerized technical drawings needed to build the actual project, no matter how small or large. The average starting pay is $53K, but the projected job growth through the end of this decade is lower than normal, at only about a 6% increase.
Again, these are just a few careers that can be joined without a four-year degree that are worth looking into and may be used as a starting point of consideration for a new career path.
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