Some high-income jobs can be done without a college education | Putnam News

The cost of tuition has risen nearly 170% since 1982, while in those same 40 years the average income of recent university graduates has increased by just 20%. Meanwhile, a report from Georgetown University shows that a college education is more important than ever to compete in the job market.

Almost everyone will agree that doctors, lawyers, and engineers are careers with high earning potential. But all of these require at least four years of college education, if not more. Since these specialized skills require formal education, it is understandable that they require a high income.

However, did you know that you can learn the skills to generate six figures without formal education? Here are seven valuable skills and how you train for them.


Copywriting is a specialized form of writing intended to sell a product. There are copywriting examples all over the web. However, if the words are meant to inform, it is a form of writing. As you will see, this is a relevant skill and related to many of the other skills listed here.

How to learn this skill: Several companies and organizations teach writing on the web. Some even offer certifications for the skill, which are useful when you’re starting out as a novice copywriter.

How to use this skill: You can use this high income skill almost anywhere. Good copywriters are rare and if you master this craft, you will never have to worry about money again. Some copywriters earn seven-figure incomes simply by getting a percentage of their copy sales. The earning potential depends on the time and effort you are willing to put into networking and writing content.

Content creation / content marketing

Content creation or marketing consists of writing informative content and selling the content itself or selling advertising on the site for which you have created content. Content marketing is actually what a lot of people think of when they imagine a blog.

However, blogging is not a business. It is a way to attract visitors to a site where you will sell them something. If you blog without any associated content marketing, you have a hobby of producing free content for fun.

In addition to creating content for an online business or blog, paid speakers regularly present actionable information at conferences and events. As a result, top experts in their field with real-life experience can earn a substantial income by traveling to give their information in person.

How to learn this skill: If you graduated from high school, you have the skills to become a content creator or content marketer. You don’t even have to have expertise in anything to create content. You need common sense and the ability to research a given topic.

There are also online companies that offer specific content marketing training from a business perspective, but the basic skills are research and writing.

How to use this skill: You’re a content marketer if you can write compelling content that will bring people to your website to sell them eBooks or advertise on your site. This is closely related to affiliate marketing, but the difference here is that the content you sell is your job, not someone else’s.

Creation of online courses

One of the hottest trends in online marketing these days is the creation of online courses. This is where you create an online course and sell it to people who want to learn more about what you know and how your knowledge can solve other people’s problems. Of course, you first need to have a related skill that you can teach, but this can be overcome with extensive research.

Did you take an online course that you liked? Do you have a personal experience to add to the original course content? Then you can emulate the system and rewrite the material in your own words, based on your own experience with the subject.

Online courses offer a great opportunity, especially with the recent increase in online events. However, even if resources exist for free on the Internet, people will pay for the work you have done to organize and present the information in an easy-to-understand format.

There are several learning platforms and software that make course creation simple. Of course, the hardest part is the “expertise” part, but even that can be overcome.

How to learn this skill: You can learn how to create a course and increase your annual income by following the tutorials on any learning platform such as Udemy. Each specific platform has its method of course creation, and other software companies have course creation software that you can implement on a website.

How to use this skill: Once you learn how to use the various tools to create online courses, you can sell course creation services to those who have the expertise but lack the technical skills to take a course. If you have skills as a video editor, you can quickly climb into the next income bracket with a significantly higher income.

Graphic designer

Graphic designers create the visual elements for online and offline advertisements. It’s logo makers, banner designers, and artists who draw cute characters that sell products. They should not be confused with web designers who can build websites without drawing a lick. However, graphic design requires some artistry.

Graphic designers are great at helping small business owners display their brands creatively.

How to learn this skill: You can learn graphic design principles online or at your local community college or university. You don’t have to complete a degree program to benefit from college-level graphic design courses. However, you can learn design skills from many online sources accessible with a high school diploma. There are also technical colleges that may offer programs in graphic design.

How to use this skill: Graphic design is a highly marketable skill. You can break out your shingle as a freelancer or work for an ad agency, newspaper, or magazine. Anything that requires a visual element requires a graphic designer. There are several freelance sites to display your portfolio of land jobs and jobs.

web designer

In this context, a web designer creates websites using website builders such as WordPress, Wix, Squarespace and others. They don’t do custom CSS or JavaScript.

This is included in the next skill, web development. Web design is tightly integrated with graphic design, but a web designer does not create images. Instead, they can use someone else’s work.

How to learn this skill: There are several online courses and each website building platform usually offers free tutorials on how to use their software. There may also be courses at your local community college available.

How to use this skill: This is another highly desirable freelance skill. Of course, you could also work for a big company and design their website, but you’re unlikely to get the same salary you could get doing it as a freelancer.

High earners in this field are usually freelancers who can charge a substantial rate due to the high value and rare skills they offer. Additionally, advanced networking through digital media and word of mouth can add credibility to the web design services provided.

Web developer

Web developers are the technical gurus behind websites. They know CSS, JavaScript and other platforms like Joomla or Ruby on Rails and can build a website without a website builder like WordPress or Wix. It is a much more technical approach to websites than website design.

Microsoft claims some of the highest median salaries for web developers in the corporate sector.

How to learn this skill: Online courses will teach you the technical skills encompassed by web development.

How to use this skill: Again, this is a great skill for freelancers. There are also jobs for web developers at most major companies. However, if you have the resume and work experience to support freelance awards, you can do even more as an independent contractor.

software developer

Software developers create applications. They can also help with web development by providing back-end databases and external application interfaces. Of course, software development is relevant wherever computers are used. Software developers are the people who bring ideas to life and tell computers to do what they want. However, mobile app development is a niche in the world of software developers.

How to learn this skill: You can teach yourself to program using online courses. It’s the only skill on this list that could benefit from formal college training, but many programmers are self-taught. These days, even app building software can help you bring your app to life without knowing how to code.

More than likely, if you don’t want to become a freelancer, you will need to take college courses in one or more programming languages, such as Java, JavaScript, Python, etc., to gain application building skills. CodeAcademy is another great resource for learning those technical skills and building a solid foundation.

How to use this skill: You can use this skill to create an app you can think of and then sell the app on an app store such as Apple or Google, or as a freelance coder for others who have app ideas . Of course, you can also work as a coder for companies like HP, Apple, etc., but most employers require a college degree.

Sam D. Gomez