These 10 fast-growing jobs don't require a college degree.
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Facing rising student loan debt and increasing difficulty securing full-time jobs in their chosen fields, many new college graduates often wonder whether the time and money spent on their degrees were really worth it. Bad news, grads: It might not have been. There are plenty of career paths that aren't solely reserved for degree-holders, and they often pay just as well as jobs that do demand a diploma. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a growth rate of 11 percent or higher for each of these jobs that don't require a college degree.
Consumer loan officer
A loan officer evaluates loan applications for individuals and businesses and can recommend or authorize approval based on their credit eligibility. Unlike commercial loan officers, these officers don't need a bachelor's degree, although mortgage loan officers must be licensed by their states. Loan officers work for banks, credit unions, mortgage companies and other financial institutions. [Learn more about this job]
Do you have great listening and typing skills? A job as a court reporter could be in your future. Court reporters create word-for-word transcriptions of legal proceedings and public speaking events. This is generally for record-keeping purposes, but sometimes these transcriptions are used for closed captioned broadcasts of public events. Many states require completion of a certificate and licensing program to work as a court reporter. [Learn more about this job]
As ongoing research continues to link oral health and overall health, the demand for dental services is expected to increase by more than 30 percent by 2020. Unlike a dentist, an assistant isn't responsible for performing dental procedures, so a formal college degree isn't necessary. As a dental assistant, you would help a dentist with patient care, keep records and carry out other daily tasks in the dentist's office. Some states do require training and an exam, so check the licensing requirements where you live. [Learn more about this job]
Jobs for people who know how to install and maintain electrical systems are expected to grow by nearly 25 percent over the next several years. You don't need a college education for this job, but most electricians receive training through a formal apprenticeship or by attending a technical school. Many states require you to be licensed before you can start working as an electrician. [Learn more about this job]
Becoming a licensed massage therapist requires a considerable amount of time; some states require more than 500 hours of study and experience in a postsecondary program. But in this growing field, the effort is worth it. Whether their clients are injured athletes, chronic-pain sufferers or simply individuals who want to relax and pamper themselves, massage therapists will always have a steady flow of business. [Learn more about this job]
If you're highly organized and efficient, you can get a job as an office clerk. Many offices, primarily schools, healthcare facilities and government agencies, need an administrative assistant to help answer the phones, schedule appointments and keep files in order, among other clerical duties. While this is often a part-time job, it has great potential to be a temp-to-hire position. [Learn more about this job]
Individuals who can handle high levels of stress and are willing to respond to situations that threaten a patient's life can undergo training to become a paramedic or emergency medical technician (EMT). Once you complete the training and licensing program, you will be responsible for providing urgent medical care and transportation for critically sick or injured individuals. The hours are erratic, and the work can be physically and emotionally strenuous, but it's a worthwhile career path in which you can potentially save people's lives. [Learn more about this job]
Working as a pharmacy technician is another excellent full- or part-time opportunity that doesn't require a college degree. Pharmacy technicians work with licensed pharmacists to dispense prescription medication in grocery store, drugstore and hospital pharmacies. Depending on your state, you may need to complete a training program and pass an exam for this position. [Learn more about this job]
Real estate agent/broker
Your hours might be irregular, but this gig is primarily by appointment, so you can set your own schedule with potential clients. All you need is a high school diploma and a certain number of hours of real estate courses to become licensed. Sales agents must work under a broker, but if you become a broker yourself, you can start and manage your own business. [Learn more about this job]
If you're passionate about sports, get in the game by becoming a coach or talent scout. The job requires vast knowledge of and experience with your chosen sport, usually gained through playing it on some level. While a teaching certification makes you more employable as a coach, you don't need a bachelor's degree for either of these jobs. Talent scouts attend games all over the country to find and recruit the best athletes, making it an ideal position for those who love to travel. Though you could work with professional or college teams, you're more likely to find a coaching position at a middle or high school, where increasing coach turnover rates are expected to create job openings. [Learn more about this job]
Originally published on BusinessNewsDaily.