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15 Jobs That Pay $60K A Year Without A Degree: Best Of 2024

Tired of living paycheck to paycheck? There are a lot of exciting jobs that pay $60K a year (or even more) out there, and you don’t necessarily need a college degree to get those.

Gaining experience while still in college gives you an edge in the job market. But, if you don’t have a degree, there are still plenty of cool jobs out there that value skills and experience over education.

With the right approach, you can find employment that pays well and aligns with your interests.

Many employers are now willing to invest in training and development for employees who show potential. Dedication and hard work can indeed pave the way for a high-paying career path that will set you up for long-term success.
 

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How Common Are $60K Jobs That Don’t Require A Degree?

While a college degree is often seen as a gateway to higher-paying careers, there are numerous jobs that pay $60k per year without a degree. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, many skilled trades, technical roles, and sales positions offer lucrative earning potential with the right training and experience.

These opportunities span various industries, including options for jobs where you work alone, offering flexibility and independence. With dedication and a willingness to learn, motivated individuals can achieve financial success in rewarding fields without the burden of student debt.

 

15 Best Jobs That Pay At Least 60k A Year Without A Degree

Nowadays, an academic degree is not mandatory for jobs that pay $60k a year or more. With the right skill set and talent, you can easily get jobs with median pay above the national average. Here are the best options:

 

1. Avionics Technician

An avionics technician repairing an aircraft.

If you’re fascinated by aircraft and have a knack for electronics, becoming an avionics technician is the perfect path for you. Your primary responsibility will be to repair and maintain the electronic systems of the aircraft.

You not only ensure the reliability of flight-critical systems but also step into a field that’s expanding rapidly worldwide.

The average annual salary for an avionics technician is $64,300 to $80,600, with top earners making over $90,000 a year. You’ll also enjoy excellent benefits and job security.

You’ll need an associate degree in avionics or a related field, along with specialized training and certifications. If you are aiming for jobs paying $10k+ a month in this field, you also need to obtain FAA certification.

 

2. Electrical Foreman

An electrical foreman repairing a home circuit.

Are you a skilled electrician looking for a leadership role with excellent pay? Then, become an electrical foreman. With infrastructure projects on the rise, the growth of jobs in public utilities like this one is witnessing an upward trend.

As an electrical foreman, you’ll supervise teams of electricians, oversee project execution, and ensure everything aligns with safety standards.

The average salary ranges from $71,000 to $118,000 per year, making it one of the best jobs that pay $60k a year. You’ll also enjoy benefits like health insurance, 401(k) for retirement savings, and paid time off.

You need a high school diploma and years of experience (as an electrician) to get this job. While a college degree is not mandatory, you must obtain a state-issued journeyman electrician license.

 

3. Solar Installer

A solar installer installing solar panels.

With the increasing demand for sustainable energy sources, the need for skilled solar installers is growing exponentially in the renewable energy industry. Additionally, becoming a solar installer will land you in jobs that pay $60K a year with no experience.

Your primary role will be to install solar panels on rooftops and other surfaces, following safety protocols and manufacturer guidelines.

Solar Installers get an average annual salary of $50,953 (+ overtime pay). You’ll get performance bonuses and health coverage as well. Plus, many companies even offer flexible schedules and even part-time weekend jobs.

You’ll need a high school diploma, a willingness to learn, and some basic technical and safety training to get this job, as most companies provide on-the-job training.

 

4. Claims Adjuster

A claim adjuster negotiating with his client.

As a claims adjuster, you’ll play a crucial role in helping individuals and businesses navigate the claims process. The demand for efficient claims adjusters continues to rise, making it an excellent option for job stability and steady growth.

Your primary task will be investigating insurance claims, interviewing claimants, and negotiating settlements with insurance companies.

You’ll get an average salary of $57,000 to $93,000 annually, with opportunities for bonuses and other perks. This role also offers the flexibility to resolve additional claims as a side job for extra income.

While a degree is not always required, many employers prefer graduate candidates in streams like finance, business, or risk management. You’ll also need to obtain a state-issued adjuster license.

 

5. Human Resource Specialist

An HR specialist taking an interview.

Working as an HR specialist opens a world of career options within the ever-evolving business landscape. In this pivotal position, you’ll manage the entire recruitment process and supervise employee-employer relations.

Your key responsibilities will be recruiting, screening, and onboarding new employees, as well as administering their compensation, benefits, and training programs.

The mean annual salary for an HR specialist is $73,080 in the US. Many companies also offer (remote) work-from-anywhere jobs, flexible schedules, and attractive perks.

Although a college degree is not necessary, a diploma in HR or business administration is definitely required. You may need to obtain PHR (Professional in Human Resources) or SHRM-CP (Human Resource Management Certified Professional) certifications as well.

 

6. Instrument Technician

An instrument technician holding a wrench.

Considering a career as an instrument technician is a smart move for long-term stability. With the increasing automation and technological advancements across various industries, there will be steady job growth in this field.

It’s a role that keeps plants running smoothly and safely. As an Instrument Technician, your day-to-day involves calibrating, installing, and maintaining instruments that monitor and control different systems.

Salaries can largely vary, but experienced technicians can expect jobs that pay $40 an hour or even $50 an hour. The current average annual wage of instrument technicians in the US is from $43,648 to $65,614.

You typically need an associate’s diploma in electronics, instrumentation, or a related field. Some employers may even ask for advanced certifications from reputed organizations like ISA (International Society of Automation).

 

7. Radiation Therapist

A radiation therapist assisting a cancer patient.

If you want a rewarding career where you make a real difference in people’s lives, become a radiation therapist. As radiotherapy is going through a rapid advancement, the prospect of this role is extremely bright.

As a radiation therapist, you’ll provide life-saving treatment to cancer patients. Your primary responsibility will be to operate radiation therapy equipment and administer precise doses of radiation to treat cancer and other diseases.

The average salary is $108,519 per year ($52.17 per hour), along with other perks such as health insurance and retirement benefits.

You need an associate degree in radiation therapy to enter this field, as well as certification from ARRT (American Registry of Radiologic Technologists). Most employers will also ask for relevant work experience.

 

8. Air Traffic Controller

An air traffic controller watching the runway from his control center.

Aviation is a highly regulated industry where you’ll play a vital role in ensuring the safe movement of aircraft as an air traffic controller. This field offers a challenging yet rewarding career path where there is an abundance of jobs that start at $60k.

Your key responsibility will be to monitor and direct air traffic, providing pilots with crucial information and instructions to maintain an exact flight path and safe distances between aircraft.

The average (base) salary is $95,289 per year. However, experienced controllers can earn well over $150,000 annually, plus federal government benefits.

You’ll need a certification from an FAA-approved AT-CTI (Air Traffic Collegiate Training Initiative) program. You’ll also need to complete specialized training to obtain licenses from the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration).

 

9. Flight Attendant

A beautiful female flight attendant wearing a blue uniform.

Do you have a passion for air travel and a love for interacting with people? Then, a career as a flight attendant could be your dream job. It is also among the best jobs for extroverts if you have a friendly and soothing personality.

Your primary responsibilities will include ensuring the safety and comfort of passengers, serving meals and beverages, and providing assistance during flights (and in any emergency).

Flight attendants earn a comfortable living, with many jobs that pay $60K a year or more. However, the current national average salary is from $68k to $114k.

To become a flight attendant, you typically need a high school diploma or equivalent. You also need to complete comprehensive training provided by the airline and obtain relevant certifications, such as the FAA Certificate of Demonstrated Proficiency.

 

10. Manufacturing Plant Operator

A manufacturing plant operator operating machinery.

Manufacturing plant operator is a crucial role that involves operating and maintaining heavy machinery used in the production process. You also need to ensure efficient operations and quality control.

Your primary responsibilities will be operating and monitoring specialized machinery and equipment, ensuring adherence to safety protocols, and maintaining production schedules.

The average annual salary for a manufacturing plant operator is around $41,534 to $55,760. Besides giving additional perks, most manufacturing plants offer skills development through company-sponsored training.

To enter this field, you must have a high school diploma or equivalent, along with on-the-job training or vocational education. Certifications in specific manufacturing technologies or machinery can also enhance job prospects.

 

11. Web Developer

A web developer developing and coding on his desktop.

Web development is an exciting career that involves building websites from scratch for businesses and organizations. It is among the fewest jobs where you can make $60,000 out of college, even while working remotely.

In this role, you’ll be responsible for designing websites, ensuring their functionality and compatibility with various devices, and optimizing their performance. You’ll also be responsible for collaborating with clients and other team members.

Web development is among the fun jobs that pay well, as the current average salary stands at $92,734 per year. Most companies also offer flexible work arrangements and paid-off.

You must be proficient in various programming languages, such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Strong technical knowledge, creativity, and the ability to work in a team are also essential skills for this job.

 

12. Sales Representative

A sales representative talking to his client over phone.

Are you a natural communicator with a passion for sales? Then, a career as a sales representative could be a lucrative path for you. Businesses of all sizes need skilled representatives for their legit sales jobs, so the demand will only increase.

As a sales representative, you’ll identify potential customers, pitch, and close deals. You’ll be the bridge between your company’s products or services and potential customers.

The average salary of a sales Representative ranges from $30,000 to $80,000 per year. You’ll also enjoy incentives like performance and target-based bonuses, company cars, and sponsored trips.

A sales associate degree can give you a solid foundation, although it is not mandatory. However, you need to be proficient in various sales techniques and strategies.

 

13. HVAC Supervisor

Three HVAC technicians are installing an AC.

The role of an HVAC supervisor demands technical know-how and leadership skills, as you’ll be guiding a team of certified technicians. This leadership role also involves training and mentoring junior technicians.

You’ll mainly oversee the installation, maintenance, and repair of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems in residential and commercial buildings as an HVAC supervisor.

HVAC supervisors earn well above the national average, as the current (average) base annual salary is $86,856. You’ll also get 401(k), health coverage, and disability insurance.

You’ll need to obtain a relevant certification, such as from EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) or through the HVAC Excellence program. Remember that these are jobs that don’t require a college degree, making them accessible with the proper training and experience.

 

14. Power Plant Operator

A plant operator supervising an energy plant.

Power plant operator is an essential occupation in the energy industry that involves controlling and maintaining power-generating equipment. As an operator, you’ll play a crucial role in ensuring a reliable electricity supply to homes and businesses.

You’ll be responsible for monitoring and controlling power-generating machinery, conducting routine inspections and maintenance, and responding to powerplant emergencies.

The annual average salary is $71,109, making it one of the jobs that pay $60k a year or more in the energy industry. Most power plants in the US also offer bonuses or other incentives based on performance.

You typically need a high school diploma or equivalent to become a powerplant operator. Additionally, you must obtain the necessary certifications or licenses required by the state or local authorities.

 

15. Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent holding a toy house.

As a real estate agent, you’ll help people find their dream homes while earning a lucrative income. With the increasing demand for housing and commercial spaces, there will be more jobs that pay over $60000 a year in the near future.

Your primary role will be to list properties, market them effectively, and guide clients through the buying or selling process. You’ll also be responsible for marketing properties, generating leads, and maintaining client relationships.

The average salary ranges from $45,038 to $58,641 per year plus perks. However, some experienced agents can earn over $200,000 per year, making it one of the fewest jobs paying $80k+.

While a college degree is not strictly required, most states mandate that you complete pre-licensing education courses and pass a state-specific licensing exam.

 

How To Earn $60K A Year Without A Degree?

Pursuing $60k a year no-degree jobs requires honing specialized skills through alternative routes. While a college education is always valuable, these options can still lead to thriving careers with median salaries above the national average.

 

On-the-Job Training

On-the-job training is an excellent way to learn new skills, gain experience, and build your resume. It provides practical experience that can’t be learned in a classroom. Many companies offer apprenticeship programs that allow you to learn while earning a salary.

So, it’s important to take advantage of any training opportunities offered by your employer to improve your chances of getting a high-paying job. Additionally, some companies even provide at-home training that allows you to gain practical experience in the field.

 

Online Training

Online training programs have opened up new pathways to well-paying, low-stress jobs that can earn you over $60,000 a year. From training camps to professional certifications, these flexible online courses equip you with in-demand skills sought after by employers.

With dedication and self-discipline, you can gain practical knowledge from the comfort of your home, potentially landing lucrative careers without the need for a traditional college degree.

 

 

Final Note

There are plenty of paths to a rewarding career. So, focus on building in-demand skills. You might even discover some easy jobs or lucrative side jobs along the way. The sooner you start, the further ahead you’ll be!

If you are a collegegoer, don’t feel pressured to choose a major right away. Internships and part-time work let you try out different things. Don’t let the lack of degree requirements hold you back. The job market is hungry for talent, and many jobs that pay $60k a year prioritize what you can do rather than your degree.

 

FAQs 

 

Is $60K a good entry-level salary?

Yes, $60k is an excellent salary for beginners. Many entry-level jobs with salaries over $60000, such as web developer, real estate agent, and sales representative, offer promising career paths and opportunities for growth.

 

Are there any remote jobs that pay at least $60,000 a year?

Many jobs that pay $60k to $80k a year (or more) can be done remotely, especially in fields like web development, digital marketing, and customer support.

 

What job pays the most without a degree? 

Various skilled trades, such as HVAC technicians, electricians, and real estate agents, can get jobs that pay $60k a year or more without a traditional college degree.

 

How common are $60k jobs that don’t require a degree?

These jobs are becoming increasingly common, with many industries offering good annual salaries for skilled workers. Some examples are the power plant operator, HVAC supervisor, and manufacturing plant operator.