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3 Jobs for High School Grads That Pay More Than $50,000 a Year

Topics: Data & Research

Recently, 24/7 Wall St. released their list of the lowest paying jobs for college graduates. In this report, they recognized that even though these jobs paid less than others that typically require a college degree, they still pay relatively well. Only the bottom four occupations from that list actually pay less than the national median wage of $36,200 a year.

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Image Credit: jessiejacobson/Flickr

In another report, 24/7 Wall St. looked at the highest paying jobs for high school graduates. The authors of the report make a point to mention that, on average, college graduates earn roughly $23,000 more than high school grads. They also note that of the 150 jobs they reviewed for the report, which utilized data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 13 have annual salaries above $60,000. In addition, it’s worth noting that many jobs on the list require some form of additional training or education, whether it’s an apprenticeship or extensive on-the-job training or a certificate program.

Let’s take a look at three jobs toward the top of this list, and what PayScale data indicate you can expect to earn in one of these positions.

  1.  Elevator Mechanic

Most Elevator Mechanics report a high level of satisfaction with their work, and those at the top of the pay range can earn six-figures. The median annual salary for this job is $79,978, and pay varies based on geographic location and experience. Successful Elevator Mechanics are problem solvers who can be calm in occasional high-pressure situations.

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  1. Detective or Criminal Investigator

Although a college degree isn’t necessarily a requirement for these jobs, some additional training beyond high school (either via an associate’s degree in law enforcement or criminal justice, or through successfully completing work at a training academy) is generally required. These professionals are often very satisfied with their jobs, and their median annual salary is $55,250 .

  1. Postmaster or Mail Superintendent

Of all the jobs on this list, Postmaster probably demonstrates how increasingly essential education has become for career success: this important job, which requires a high school diploma or equivalent, and offers high job satisfaction and a median annual salary of $66,974, is also in serious decline. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the occupation will decline 26 percent between 2014 and 2024.

For more information, be sure to check out the complete list of the highest paying jobs for high school graduates.

Tell Us What You Think

Have you worked at any of the jobs that made this list? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.


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