Great jobs for when a degree isn’t the answer

There are many exciting job options out there for people who don’t want to embark on higher education. Chase reporter ANTONY CLAY looks at a few options

AFTER all the brouhaha over exam results this year, many young people may be thinking they want to steer well away from any more education.

Others may not have got the grades they need for a university placement.

Some on the other hand will be choosing to participate in the increasingly popular apprenticeships that are available.

Other young people may even have been offered employment.

There will be many who are wondering what to do next but the truth is that there are plenty of opportunities out there for people not wanting to take a degree or who can’t for whatever reason.

Indeed, according to teen magazine Future-Mag, more than half — 54 per cent — of graduates say they would think again about choosing university as the best way to find a job.

Many young people don’t fancy another three years of study, cannot face the debt of university, or didn’t get the expected exam results.

With so many young people getting degrees these days, the idea they will all walk into well-paid jobs and glittering careers is something of a myth anyway.

But there are plenty of new routes into careers that were once the preserve of graduates.

Three in four UK businesses believe more young people will choose earn-as-you-learn routes in the next few years, according to research.
Future-Mag – at future-mag: – has compiled a list of 10 top jobs that don’t require a degree:

1 Nurse
The lowdown –
If you have been thinking of becoming a nurse but don’t want to go to university full-time, this could be for you. The Government has just announced a massive £172m investment into nursing. The money is to allow healthcare employers to take on up to 2,000 nursing degree apprentices every year over the next four years.

Getting there
Nursing apprenticeships offer an alternative to full-time university courses, allowing people to earn a salary while their tuition costs are paid. At the end of the apprenticeship – which usually takes four years – apprentices are able to qualify as fully registered nurses.
You will usually need four or five GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a degree apprenticeship.
Pay: £24,907 to £37,890.

2 Air Traffic Controller
The lowdown
They help to keep some of the busiest airspace in the world moving. The work is challenging and demanding, but it’s immensely rewarding too. Air traffic controllers give information and advice to airline pilots to help them take off and land safely and on time.

Getting there
You have to be over 18 and have at least five GCSEs or equivalent at Grade 4 or above (previously A-C) or Scottish Nationals 5 Grade A-C or equivalent, including English and maths. As well as having a good level of physical and mental fitness, you must satisfy the basic medical requirements set down by the Civil Aviation Authority.
The National Air Traffic Control Service (NATS) has developed a series of games to help gauge whether you are right for this career.
Pay: £17,000 to £50,000.

Family Law book with legal gavel

3 Solicitor
The lowdown
Solicitors advise clients about the law and act on their behalf in legal matters, and can specialise in a host of areas, including contract, criminal, commercial and family law, and much more.

Getting there
You can now become a solicitor by training on the job since new solicitor apprenticeships (level 7) were approved in 2015. This isn’t an easy route – you will need to pass a series of tough exams. You will need good A levels and it can take five to six years to complete.
Pay: £25,000 to £100,000.

4 Visual Effects Artist
The lowdown
They help artists produce all the whizzy visual effects (VFX). They assist senior VFX artists and prepare the elements required for the final shots. Eventually they will be employed by post-production companies working on commercials, television series and feature films.

Getting there
You could do a practical short course at London’s MetFilm School (Ealing Studios) and try to get into the industry that way, or do an apprenticeship via Next Gen.
Pay: from £18,000 to £50,000 once qualified.

5 Computer forensic analyst (cyber security)
The lowdown
Investigate and thwart cyber crime. They might work for the police or security services, or for computer security specialists and in-house teams. They will follow and analyse electronic data, ultimately to help uncover cyber crime such as commercial espionage, theft, fraud or terrorism.

Getting there
Cyber security professionals are in high demand in both the public and private sector in the wake of high level breaches and perceived terrorism threats. There is a severe shortage of qualified professionals. Cyber security higher apprenticeships (level 4) are offered by major infrastructure and energy companies and the security services.
Pay: £20,000 to £60,000.

6 Estate Agent
The lowdown
Estate agents sell and rent out commercial and residential property, acting as negotiators between buyers and sellers.

Getting there
Some estate agents offer an intermediate apprenticeship as a junior estate agent, or you may be able to start as a trainee sales negotiator and learn on the job.
Pay: estate agents often work on commission which means that you have a basic salary and also earn a percentage of the sale or rental price of any property you sell or rent £15,000 to £40,000.

7 Police Officer
The lowdown
This is another profession where the Government has pumped in large amounts of cash to help recruit new officers. If you have been considering this as a career, now could be the right time to apply. Police officers keep law and order, investigate crime, and support crime prevention.

Getting there
There is no formal educational requirement for direct application but you will have to be physically fit and pass written tests. Or, you could start by doing a police constable degree apprenticeship.
You will usually need four or five GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and college qualifications like A levels for a degree apprenticeship.
You can get a taste of what it’s like to work with the police by volunteering as a special constable. You could also get paid work as a police community support officer (PCSO) before applying for police officer training.
Pay: £20,000 to £60,000.

8 Public Relations Officer
The lowdown
Public relations (PR) officers manage an organisation’s public image and reputation. You might get involved in planning PR campaigns, monitoring and reacting to the public and media, writing and editing press releases, speeches, newsletters, leaflets, brochures and websites, creating content on social media.

Getting there
There is no set entry route to become a public relations officer but it may be useful to do a relevant subject at college, like a Foundation Certificate in Marketing. You can work towards this role by doing a public relations assistant higher apprenticeship.
You will usually need four or five GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship.
Pay: £18,000 to £90,000.

9 Youth Worker
The lowdown
Work with young people and help them develop personally and socially. They might work with local services, youth offending teams or voluntary organisations and community groups. They might help organise sports and other activities, or be involved in counselling and mentoring, or liaising with authorities.

Getting there
Many enter youth work as a volunteer or paid worker, but you can now qualify via a youth work apprenticeship.
Pay: £23,250 to £37,500.

10 Army Officer
The lowdown
Undergo leadership training before choosing from a wide range of specialisms, including platoon commander, helicopter pilot, intelligence, logistics, even work in military medicine and healthcare.

Getting there
You will typically need five GCSEs at grade 9 to 4 (A* to C) or above and two A levels. You will have to take aptitude and ability tests, pass a fitness test and interview before a more rigorous assessment to see if you are capable mentally and physically.
Pay: £27,273 to £42,009.

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