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Law School isn't Just for Lawyers: Alternative Legal Careers to Pursue with a Law Degree

When some students consider law school, they envision themselves working tirelessly at a desk and going to court a few times a week. While many people go to law school in order to later become a lawyer, this profession isn’t for everyone. You can use law school as a springboard for a career in several industries with varying positions beyond being a lawyer in a law firm. If you are considering law school, read on to learn about some alternative legal careers that you can pursue with a law degree:

Legal Counsel for a Non-profit Organization

Working as counsel for a non-profit gives you the added satisfaction of championing a cause you believe in and support. This is also a great way to get legal experience after graduating when you are first starting out. For a job like this, you’ll want to start by spreading word to people you know in relevant organizations, or contacting organizations in your area. From there, consider professional networking tools to connect with and advertise your skills to organizations seeking to hire counsel.

Salary: $76,000/year average

County or City Attorney

Government bodies frequently require representation and may maintain an attorney on staff for this purpose. A job like this would give you the opportunity to work with all types of people, and give you a “behind the scenes” pass for some historic and interesting changes in local government. These positions tend to be widely advertised; however, small cities and counties may only advertise locally. You’ll also need prior experience for a position like this, and some familiarity with local government legal issues and policies.

Salary: $50,000 - $90,000/year, entry-level, variable


While not a job open to most people just out of law school, it is a possibility to consider for the future, especially given the breadth and scope of the US judicial system. Many judgeships are available only through election, but others are by-appointment from another political body, such as a governor—this varies by jurisdiction. To become a judge, community connections are paramount. People have become judges without a law degree, but without savvy networking, options are limited.

Salary: $100,000 - $150,000/year

Law Librarian

Many of these positions are affiliated with universities, government institutions, or large corporate firms. These positions are great for people who love performing research or have advanced organization skills. To become a law librarian, you must obtain a Master of Library Science (MLS) degree in order to qualify for the work that is required. Law librarian positions are frequently listed online through library job lists.

Salary: $65,000 - $85,000/year average

Healthcare Legal Representation

Those who attend law school can use their skills and expertise to represent a myriad of clients—hospitals, clinics, individuals, pharmaceutical companies, etc. Law students can complete a Juris Doctor program with an emphasis in health, which will qualify them for a position like this. Additionally, it is possible for those who already work in healthcare to get a master of science in health law, and then combine their knowledge of law and healthcare to help individuals and organizations with health issues that cross into legal territory.

Salary: $131,990 (for legal professionals), $101,340 (for healthcare professionals)

University Professor in a Juris Doctor Program

Remember, your law professors had to start somewhere. If you want to follow in their footsteps and teach, becoming a university professor through a Juris Doctor program is your simplest route to doing so. If this is something that interests you, higher education job boards are one great place to start—especially if you want to teach at a university in your area, or even your alma mater. Some teaching experience may be required, depending on the position you want.

Salary: $100,000+ per year

If you are worried that law school will tie you down in your career, and limit your choices, think again. Not only are there plenty of different kinds of lawyers, but there are countless legal positions that span across varying industries. View law school as a springboard for any number of exciting careers that will match your skills and personality—not as a one-way road that only leads to being a lawyer.

Will an Online MBA Hurt Your Professional Prospects?

Recent economic uncertainties have left many applicants unwilling to give up stable jobs in order to study full-time – leading to a decline in interest in full-time MBA studymethods. Some applicants are looking to online program formats that allow them to continue working as an alternative.

While online study is gaining wider acceptance from employers,schools are still tackling the perception that executive education delivered online isin some wayof less value than its brick-and-mortar equivalents.

When Brand Matters

It might be surprising, but brand identity is incredibly important when it comes to online schools – what school you attend makes a difference in the degree’s worth. Schools that are exclusively designed for profit and admit any applicant willing to pay tuitiondon’t carry as much authority as schools that are selective in their acceptance process.

The cold hard fact is that the earning potential for an online MBA holder will be greater if the degree comes from an acclaimed school or valued program – anachievement that isn’t as implausible as it sounds.

Some of the best business schools in the world now offer MBAs through distance learning programs, quite possibly since the MBA has been found to be the most popular online degree.Online MBA courses are thriving at business schools from Arizona State University to Babson College in Massachusetts.

For-profit Woes

In an interview with U.S. News & World Report, Brad Remillard stated that business recruiters are more liable to consider the reputation of the school than the way the MBA was delivered.According to Remillard, cofounder and executive recruiter at IMPACT Hiring Solutions Executive Search, a client once told him that an online MBA from a large for-profit school was "just like an advanced high school degree."

It’s easy to see why the for-profit schools are so maligned. Their significantly lower tuition ratesgo hand in hand with theirloose admission standards. Kaplan Universitysimply requires an interview and official transcripts for proof of a bachelor’s degree -- a GMAT score is not necessary.

High-end online programs cost considerably more than those offered by for-profit universities. Their admission standards, quality of faculty, and extensive curriculum tend to equal that of their residential MBA programs.

Is It Pointless?

Thanks to the for-profit university sector, it may not be easy to shuck the online business schools’ reputation as being no more than revolving door diploma-factories.While no virtual MBA willturn a recruiter's headthe way that Harvard credentials might, in the right circumstances, an online MBA can certainlyadvancea person’s career. When all is said and done, it comes down to the individual applicant to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of each school. By determining what it is they wish to obtain from an MBA, teamed with careful research and an examination of the opportunities available, students can find the program that will ensure a profitable future.

image credit: stockimages

Five Rewarding Jobs You Should Consider If You Want To Make A Difference

Finding a job isn't always easy, but finding a job that offers meaning and purpose to your life is even more difficult. If you believe that a job should include more rewards than just the paycheck you bring home, you may want to consider one of these five careers:


Do you want to save lives? IF so, a career in emergency response and emergency medicine might be for you. Having a two-year degree will help here, but the biggest focus is on successful training and an aptitude for the work, which many EMTs say cannot be taught. This is a fast-growing occupation that pays an annual median salary of $31,020, which increases with continued education and training.

Middle Grades/School Teacher

For many young people, middle school includes the most difficult years of their lives with challenges that include bullying, drugs, and other peer issues. Having teachers who believe in the importance of education and want to help their students succeed can make a huge difference in their lives. These are notoriously difficult years to teach, requiring dedication, compassion, and an iron will. The annual median salary is $53,430.


For big-picture people, a career in diplomacy has the potential for many rewards, including travel. More importantly, it includes representing your country in ways that can influence foreign policy and political relationships for decades to come. Diplomats and many assistant-level positions require a degree in diplomacy. They are paid according to the Foreign Service (FS) Pay Schedule of the federal government, which ranges from $28,000 to $130,000 annually. A diplomacy degree and leadership experience will be needed for this type of work.

Medical Librarian

A medical librarian provides a variety of record management and research services to hospitals and clinics, helping serve their patients better. Many such librarians work for the Veterans Administration (VA) or organizations like the Mayo Clinic. As with all professional librarians, this position requires a Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) in addition to courses specific to medical librarianship and a background in health sciences. The annual median salary is $49,790.

Funding Coordinator at a Nonprofit

No matter the cause they support, all nonprofit organizations require funding and most have a position dedicated to seeking and managing that funding. If you have an interest in accounting and networking, becoming a funding coordinator can be very rewarding. A degree in communication or finance will help, but experience is crucial, especially at the non-entry level. The job market is growing quickly. The annual median salary is $50,680.

A lot of exciting opportunities and rewarding jobs exist if you want one where you can make a difference. Just find one that speaks to your desire to do good and to your personal strengths.

Four To Die For Career Perks

First time jobs have the distinct possibility of being hellish. No experience. Low wage. Angry clients or costumers. And a low probability of high quality perks. Gradually the years pass, you gain expertize in your chosen field, and you hone your skills. You become an asset that any company would eagerly hire. A possible problem? Your company is still offering the same pitiful perks.

Here’s a secret. As a skilled professional, companies should be wooing you, as much as you are wooing them. When you go to a job interview, you put on your Sunday best, polish your resume to tell an exciting story, and cyber stalk the company to sculpt intelligent interview questions. When on the job, you present your best work and make suggestions to help the company succeed.In small ways, you are dedicated to the long term success of the company.

Smart companies acknowledge employee excellence and dedication. They realize the value of invested employees, and they take action to keep the employee from seeking employment at another company. Employee perks are one means in which they retain their employees. Employee perks are meant to increase the quality of employee work and home life. Here are a few employee perks to look out for while looking for a long term career.

Educational Benefits

Educations benefit both employers and employees. College degrees allow employees to increase their knowledge, hone their skills, and reach their full potential. Many employers realize that education acquired to benefit their work, should not solely be the employees responsibility. Even lower quality jobs have begun offering college perks in order to keep employees and prevent expensive hiring costs.

Here are a few educational perks to look out for:
  • Fully paid undergrad and graduate education. In particular many companies offer to pay for their management teams to attend an online undergrad business or graduate mba program.
  • Pays a percentage of the educational fees. 
  • Retroactively pays college loans after a working a few years at the company. 
  • Scholarships to the family members of employees. 

PTO- Vacation

Check to see how many vacation days are offered every year. According to “Give Me a Break” by Helen Jorgensen many European countries have a legally mandated number of vacation days per year. The United States does not have a similar mandate in our labor laws. It’s up to employers to decide if vacation days are offered and how many, if any, will be paid.
This seems even more shocking when you discover that workers in the United Kingdom can take up to four weeks of paid vacation every year. United Kingdom employers can offer four weeks, and your current employee can’t even manage one day? How screwy is that?
If you’ve decided you want PTO, how many days should you expect companies to offer? On average, US employees are offered around 23 paid time off (12 vacation and 11 holiday) each year. Shoot for an employer that offers around 17-30 paid days off each year.

PTO- Charity

Many Americans would volunteer if they had the time or the money. Unfortunately due to the fact that many employers offer minimal PTO, many employees don’t spend what little time they have to themselves helping others. Many companies have made it feasible for individuals to give back by offering a certain number of paid charity days each year to employees.
Electricity supplier Direct Energy offers every employee one charity day whileDansko Footwear offers 20 hours of paid volunteer time per employee. While this is not a common perk of the job, companies that do have it tend to offer one to five days of paid charity leave.

Fitness Center

Many careers in the United States are sedentary. Employees climb into their car and drive to work. Walk to their desk. Spend 8-10 hours staring at a computer screen. Then drive back home. Unfortunately sedentary life styles can lead to a shorter lifespan. What’s more sedentary than spending 40 hours a week in front of a computer screen?

Many companies offer some form of healthy living perk in order to facilitate a healthy work environment, healthy minds, and better overall health for their employees. Here are a few options that some companies have implemented:
  • Fully paid off-site gym memberships or gym membership discounts.
  • On-site gyms for all of their employees to use when not on the clock.  
  • Sponsored exercise classes.
  • Devices that monitor health.
  • On the clock optional workout time. 
Employee perks are not legally mandated. That being said, long term careers should have at least a few employee perks. While not all employers can offer vast perk packages like Google, even smaller companies should attempt to offer some perks. Failure to offer perks, especially when the company is flourishing, may demonstrate that the company does not value their employees. At that point, you may want to start updating your resume.

image credit: Stuart Miles

Job Decisions: Cracking the Code to Your Next Career

As children, we all dream about the perfect careers we would one day like to have. As adults, those dreams are set aside in favor of realistic concerns about money, and basic lifestyle preferences. Adults often react against their childish idealism by going too far in the other direction and choosing jobs for purely pragmatic reasons. It is possible to strike a balance between finding a job that fulfills one's everyday needs, while also providing personal satisfaction, but sometimes you have to take an unconventional route to get there.

Commute Concerns

Contrary to popular belief, salary should not be one's primary concern when choosing a job. It actually makes more sense in the long term to consider the length of the commute. The time that one spends traveling on a daily basis eventually becomes a major factor in whether you want to go to work at all. Whether or not you enjoy it, the substance of the job begins to be overwhelmed by the drudgery of traveling back and forth every day. If the time spent commuting is added to the time spent in the office, many people would find they are not being paid nearly enough for all of the time they invest in the overall process of getting to work, working, and then going home.

Future Findings

Another thing to consider is the potential for advancement. A job that starts out with middle pay, but promises future raises and promotions is a better long-term investment, than a job with decent pay that offers no opportunities to ever take on new responsibilities. Today's young adults do not have the old-fashioned luxury of assuming they will stay with one company until retirement. It is wise to view each new job in terms of how the experience accumulated there will look on your resume.

School and Smarts

Even supposedly surefire career fields no longer promise stability and affluence. You must earn a master’s in engineering management online or pharmacy sciences to make any headway in those fields. Consequently, it is always a good idea to progress as far educationally as you possibly can. Masters degrees are expensive, but earning one is often the only way to get the job of your choice. Staying in school is also a direct path to prestigious internships. Companies tend to reserve their best internship positions for students from certain schools, and they often promote those interns to full-time employees upon graduation. If that does not happen, an impressive internship still looks better on a resume than a retail job does.

Working while you Wait

Supplemental part-time jobs are necessities for many recent graduates. Instead of pursuing full-time work in competitive fields, many are smartly accepting generic office or restaurant jobs that pay well, and slowly entering their favored careers via night or weekend shifts. Adjunct teaching at local colleges is a great way to make some extra money, while making use of a master’s degree. Some people even take unpaid internships while working full-time elsewhere. Doing so is a savvy way to make a career change through experience and references.

There is no need to feel defeated by lackluster post-college jobs. Instead, it is helpful to see them as stepping stones. Every job offers employees the opportunity to make connections that might pay off in the future. People are always happy to act as references for their friends and former coworkers. Making connections, gaining experience and keeping an eye on long-term prospects are the best ways to acquire jobs that suit one's chosen lifestyle.

Have A Career In Mind? Six Tips To Find That Perfect Job And Get Your Resume Noticed

Although there are many important things that an individual will do throughout the course of his or her life, developing a meaningful, rewarding career is particularly important. To get the ball rolling, it's important that people first find the perfect job and then begin to build a strong, long-standing career with a promising company. If you are looking for tips that will enable you to get going by finding the perfect job, the following six strategies can help:

Complete An Internship

Completing an internship is a great way to find a perfect job for one simple reason: you may get hired by the company through which you complete the internship. Additionally, internships afford you the opportunity to attain the type of knowledge and hands-on experience that will make you a very marketable job candidate.

Career Fairs

Attending career fairs is another effective strategy you can implement for the purpose of getting the perfect job. Typically, local businesses that are hiring will frequent career fairs in search of enthusiastic, self-motivated people to work for them. To make the most of this strategy, be sure to dress well and have your business card and resume ready when you arrive.

Go Online

These days, there are a wide variety of career-based websites that list jobs that are available throughout the country. By simply logging on to one of these websites and typing in your city and state, you'll be able to learn about job options in your local area.


Networking is one of the most effective strategies you can implement when attempting to find a job. In fact, the majority of jobs that people attain become available through networking activity. Although broadly defined, networking basically involves interacting with people who can eventually be added to your contact list for the purpose of doing business in some significant way. There are a variety of ways that you can network, including attending conferences and lectures that pertain to your field of interest.

Pursue Career Counseling Services

If you're serious about finding the perfect job and getting your resume noticed, you should think about getting career counseling services. Typically, these career centers will post information regarding jobs that have recently become available. Additionally, they will review your resume in order to ensure that it is optimized for marketability.

Use Social Media

Social media has become an incredibly powerful way for employers and employees to connect in the online realm. In many cases, employers who are hiring will post jobs via social media forums such as LinkedIn or Twitter. Since this is the case, make a point to open accounts with these channels and check them regularly to get the latest information regarding who's hiring.

In order to lead a productive and positive life, it is important for you to invest in the career development process-and part of this process is attaining a job in the field that you'd like to work in for the rest of your life. By implementing the strategies outlined above, you will be able to optimize your resume and complete the job-hunting process with expertise and confidence.

Informational credit to Job News USA.

Learning on the Job: Career Ideas for Hands on People

The term "career" is often associated with college degrees, however many people enjoy very lucrative careers without ever setting foot on a college campus. The truth is, if you have the right determination, you can have your dream job by learning skills in a hands-on environment. Even those who already have college degrees and are seeking a career change can follow the same pathway. Take a closer look at some areas where hands-on people can learn career-building skills and find a career.

Catering and Specialty Food Service

People who enjoy both planning and cooking may find catering to be a great opportunity to learn on the job. Start by applying for a job with an established caterer, and working at a restaurant that offers catering, or working in food service at a hotel. Working for a caterer provides an opportunity to learn how to prepare all types of foods and create memorable experiences for others. It also offers the opportunity to hone special skills like baking and presenting foods in imaginative ways.

Landscaping and Lawn Care

People who enjoy being outdoors might consider jobs in landscaping. This includes cutting grass, trimming shrubs, and planning a yard or landscape. The work can be hot during the summer, but with the number of busy families who need help keeping their lawns looking good, there is sure to be work available in the colder months as well. During the winter, the focus of lawn care can be getting soil ready for spring planting, pruning certain vegetation, and clearing out dead plants and leaves.

Landscaping contractors also work with developers, business sites, or anywhere grass, trees or other plants need maintenance and care. The local Agricultural Extension office usually offers classes that teach all types of lawn care and landscaping skills for free, or at a minimal charge. It is also possible to get a pesticide applicators license through the Extension service. This will enhance one's ability to work independently as a landscaper.


There will always be a need for skilled carpenters. Many carpenters learn their craft by wielding a hammer alongside more experienced workers. Carpentry offers many opportunities, including framing new homes, home renovations in Courtenay, and building custom cabinets. In today's environment of cookie-cutter homes, many people are looking for custom builders. According to a Courtenay custom home builder, a carpenter with custom building know-how will be sought after by builders who serve affluent clients.

Massage Therapy

What could be more hands on than massage therapy? Being a competent massage therapist will require some formal training to learn how to apply therapeutic massage without causing injury. People who are going through stressful times, pregnancy, or recovering from an injury, benefit from massage therapy. A massage can be relaxing and necessary for many clients, so you will have relative job security.

These are just a few of the many jobs that are hands on, and can be learned through on-the-job training. The key to being successful in developing skills, is to find people who are passionate about their work to serve as mentors for you.

Online Classes: Six Reasons to Get Your Degree Online

Online degree programs have come a very long way over the last decade. There are now advanced programs for everything from business and finance to engineering, because technology is making it easier than ever to get a quality education regardless of where you live. Although you might be skeptical about taking classes online, it is one of the most efficient ways to earn your degree if you have a family, already work full time, or want to save money. Keep reading to learn about some of the biggest benefits of earning your degree online.


Getting your degree online is more convenient than going to a traditional brick and mortar school. You are able to look at the study materials and watch classes whenever it fits into your schedule, which allows you to keep a job and to fulfill other personal responsibilities while still earning a degree. Additionally, completing classes online will allow you to cut down on commute time that you would spend traveling to a campus with traditional classes.

Learn At Your Own Pace

The classes and study materials for online degree programs are usually accessible whenever you need them. This allows you to learn at your own pace because you can review the same materials or lessons repeatedly until you fully understand the coursework. You can even skip ahead if you already understand part of the lesson. This results in better comprehension, and allows you to spend as much or as little time on a section as you wish.

More Degree Options

Online colleges have a wider selection of classes than traditional schools. This means you could earn an online Masters in Public Policy even if there are no local schools offering those courses. This is possible because online universities do not have to worry about limited class space and student ratios. This allows for a larger range of degree programs online.

Lower Costs

An advantage of online colleges is that they do not have to worry about large amounts of overhead related to maintaining campuses and support staff. These savings are often passed on to students. The result is that you could pay less to earn a degree online without sacrificing a quality education.

Potentially Earn Degrees Faster

Some of the online colleges today are offering accelerated degree programs. Individual credits can be earned in just a few weeks. This could make it possible to earn a degree in far less time than through traditional programs in brick and mortar universities.

No Travel Required

The materials and classes online can be accessed from any location with an Internet connection. Online courses make it unnecessary to travel to a classroom or campus every day. This saves time, money and frustration while earning a degree. The ability to work remotely gives you the freedom to work school into your schedule, instead of the other way around.

Online degrees from accredited schools now have just as much validity as degrees from brick and mortar colleges. Learning online is a unique and rewarding experience that ends in a real college degree, and getting your degree online now comes with many benefits that cannot be found on traditional campuses.

Engineering Degree: Five Ways You Can Use Your Diploma

A degree in engineering is more than just a piece of paper or a title. Engineering is a field that incorporates logistical thinking, problem-solving, mathematics, statistics, and so much more. With all of those components as fundamental skills, this study prepares you for more than just an engineering career. Other available positions for individuals with an engineering degree include logistical operations, management, patent law, technical skills, and purchasing.

Why Is an Engineering Degree So Versatile?

Whether you realize it or not, an engineering degree qualifies you for a myriad of positions. While engineering preparation requires intensive study in specific areas, it also involves a broad spectrum of a number of additional course components. This one degree encompasses fundamentals in logistics, complex and critical thinking, numeracy, communication, and, of course, technical skills.

What Are Additional Career Options for Engineers?

If you’ve gone into the field and realized engineering isn’t quite where you fit, or even if you are just considering your options, you are in a good position. A degree in engineering affords you the opportunity to consider a variety of different career paths, including logistical operations, management, patent law, technical skills, and purchasing or procurement.

1. Logistical Operations

If you are well-organized and a good communicator, you may be a good fit as a logistician. Individuals in this field are responsible for coordinating all of the aspects of a variety of different events, such as natural disasters, and environmental issues. A logistician is responsible for identifying and dispatching the appropriate equipment, supplies, and personnel needed to mediate a natural disaster or occurrence. Logisticians are also key members in a number of additional fields, including finance, government, and commerce.

2. Management

Engineers are typically well-suited for management positions that are related to operations. This field is the link between the production process and business or commerce of an operation or organization. Individuals in this field are intricately involved in both sides of the process, and are typically responsible for coordinating the materials needed, personnel involved, and the delivery to customers. An engineering degree is effective preparation for a career in operations management, as the degree focuses on developing your skills of problem-solving and effective system functions. Improving systems, decreasing costs, and increasing productivity are all goals of an effective operations manager.

3. Patent Law

An individual in the field of patent law is responsible for writing, securing, and guiding clients seeking patents for inventions. The preliminary requirement for patent law is simply technical expertise, as obtaining patents requires an astute understanding of technological innovations. In addition to a degree in engineering as well as proven technical expertise, an extensive training period and exam qualification are also necessary for working in the field of patent law. Nonetheless, a background in engineering is a good place to start in the field.

4. Technical Skills

Because an engineering degree requires training in fundamental technical skills, the degree lends itself to technical sectors as well. According to Terminal City Iron Works Ltd, those with this degree can apply their knowledge in skilled fields, such as iron works. This type of work requires a specific understanding of the function of machinery, Canada hydrants, and different compounds, which is applied to create a variety of different pieces – both artistic and functional.

5. Purchasing

Purchasing is another career field related to engineering. This type of position involves the purchase of equipment, parts, and machinery at an appropriate quality and price so different jobs and tasks can be completed. If you work in the purchasing field, you may be responsible for a variety of tasks including selecting preferred suppliers, choosing quality products, pricing, and scheduling products and delivery, and a variety of other jobs.

An engineering degree is a relatively versatile qualification. If you are a qualified engineer, don’t limit your career possibilities, but consider all of the potential jobs available to find one that is the perfect fit for you.

Blue Collar: Jobs in Demand in Today's Economy

It's an oft dragged out sentiment that to find a job today, you need a college degree. Then you join a huge profitable company, where you wear a button up and tie and carry a briefcase. As it turns out, there are many jobs in more hands-on areas-- blue collar work-- with high demands for workers. Best of all, many pay well, and typically don't require a college degree. Below we'll look at several such jobs that are expanding rapidly, and how you can avoid corporate culture.


With hands-on employment ranging from construction to maintenance and repair, plumbers are always in demand. Plumbers typically receive training in the form of an apprenticeship, but many community colleges offer certification programs. Their median hourly wage is about $22, with average salary coming in at $50k. The highest earners in the field can expect to take home $80k. Employment is projected to increase 21% per year.


An extremely physically demanding job, masonry is not for everyone. Though for people who enjoy manual labor and working outdoors, it can be a holy grail of employment. Brickmasons do exactly what it sounds like: work on construction projects built out of brick. Masonry is typically learned on the job, through an apprenticeship, or through a program at a technical school. Workers earn an average of $44k, and employment is projected to increase 34% per year.

Dental Hygienist

Getting up close and personal with a stranger's mouth may not be everyone's cup of tea, but for those who are interested, dental hygiene is a fast growing and well-paying field. Dental hygienists are responsible for cleaning and inspecting teeth in conjunction with a dentist. Typically, an associate's degree is required, and all states require some level of licensing to work in the field. Dental hygienists make $70k on average, and many work part-time. Employment is projected to increase 33% per year.

Lift Repairs

Life as an elevator mechanic has its ups and downs; for one, many workers are on call 24/7, and have to carry lots of heavy equipment and parts. Elevator mechanics also are not limited to just elevators-- they install, repair, and fix escalators, moving walkways, and various other lifts, too. But with only a high school diploma and an apprenticeship, elevator repairers can expect to make $76k on average. Employment is projected to increase 25% per year.

Drill Operators

Rotary drill operators are responsible for the setup and operation of a variety of drills used to obtain oil and gas, or for the removal of core samples used for testing during oil and gas exploration. It's a dirty job, but doesn't even require a high school education, and training is generally done on the job. The need for gas is rising even with more sustainable options, and these kinds of workers are sorely needed. Rotary drill operators can expect to take home about $49k a year, not bad for needing no education. Employment is projected to increase 19% per year.

Iron and Steel Workers

If heights and physically demanding work don’t scare you, being an ironworker could really satisfy you. Typically operating high off the ground or on Edmonton cnc machines, an ironworker's job is to install iron or steel beams and girders in construction projects. As Advantage Manufacturing Ltd notes, with a country full of aging infrastructure, there is a very real demand for workers in this industry. The job comes with hazards, though; working at great heights comes with inherent risks. Ironworkers usually learn through an apprenticeship or on the job, and make $46k on average. Employment is projected to increase 22% per year.

This short list is certainly not all inclusive. Despite what many people believe, college may not be for everyone, and there is a huge amount of opportunities out there for people who would rather not pursue a degree, and the guarantee of debt that comes with it. There's definitely something out there for everyone!

image credit: Stuart Miles

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