Yes There are Career Options That Don't Require a 4Year College Degree!

Updated: Jun 4


You might think that the only way to get ahead in your career is by getting a 4year degree. Well, there are SO many other great options. Seriously! This article will provide tips on educational and professional options to explore outside of the common 4year college degree path.


Education

Starting with education options, there are many ways to learn skills and gain experience without investing in a 4year college degree. The options listed below can provide tailored education to a specific field and career path so that you can learn what you need and get started in your chosen career more quickly. Note that most 4year degrees include additional coursework outside of your chosen major and while beneficial in many ways, those courses add to the length of time needed to complete a 4year degree and increases the overall cost of that educational path. Below are 5 educational options to consider outside of a 4year college degree.


1. 2year degree

2. Certificate program

3. Specific licensure

4. Trade School

5. Additional education but no specific certificate or licensure

Here are 30+ career examples that do not require a 4year degree:


Medical/Health Field

The medical and health fields have many career options that do not require a 4year degree. You may need some additional education or certification but not necessarily a Bachelor's degree. Just some great examples of these job options include:


1. Pharmacy Technician

2. Radiologic Technician

3. Dental Hygienist

4. Medical Technician

5. Nursing Assistant

Trades

According to ZipRecruiter.com, a trade job "...refers to any job whose duties require advanced training and skills gained through means other than a bachelor's degree". As an example, experience and training can be gained through on-the-job experience, an apprenticeship, or completing a vocational school training program. While there are numerous options, here are just 5 examples of trade-based careers:


1. Tool and Die Maker

2. Carpenter

3. Plumber

4. Auto Mechanic

5. Welder/Solderer

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Hospitality

The hospitality industry encompasses many segments of services including tourism, transportation, events, lodging, and food & beverage. Within each of these services segments, there are MANY career options that do not require a Bachelor's degree. This field will require additional skills and some education in specific areas BUT that doesn't mean it has to be a 4year degree. Many jobs in the hospitality field can be supported through a 2year degree program and can be assisted with specific certification. Check out these great career options in this field:


1. Event Manager

2. Event Coordinator

3. Hotel General Manager

4. Concierge

5. Waiter

6. Bartender

7. Head of Food & Beverage

8. Chef

Cosmetology

The field of Cosmetology includes many great career options that do not require a 4year degree. This field will require additional skills and some education in specific areas BUT that doesn't mean it has to be a 4year degree. Many jobs in the cosmetology field can be supported through programs and coursework specifically geared towards cosmetology. Additional certification or licensure can be obtained depending on the career path you choose. Check out these great career options in this field:


1. Hair Stylist

2. Nail Technician

3. Esthetician

4. Massage Therapist

5. Makeup Artist

6. Salon Manager

7. Spa Manager

8. Wedding or Event Stylist


Technology Field

In the field of technology, there are MANY career options that do not require a Bachelor's degree. This field will require additional skills and some education in specific areas BUT that doesn't mean it has to be a 4year degree. Many jobs in the technology field can be supported through a 2year degree program and can be assisted with specific certification. Check out these great career options in this field:


1. Software Engineer