Over the past 20 years, four-year degrees from colleges or universities have gone from giving job seekers a leg-up to (ostensibly) becoming a forgone necessity

College isn’t in the cards for everyone, nor should it have to be. If you’re looking for a way to kickstart your professional career without a degree, you’ve come to the right place.

Show Your Skills

A degree is just a certification of knowledge of a particular subject. If you can find something else that serves that purpose, you can potentially save yourself tens of thousands of dollars in tuition.

The trouble is finding something to fill that need. Degrees have been the standard of accreditation for centuries. Technically, everything you could need to know about being a lawyer is on the internet somewhere, but without a law degree, you’ll only get so far. That being said, there are suitable substitutes for degrees out there.

Life Experience: They say there is no better teacher. There are plenty of professions where a seasoned veteran who has been doing something for years is more desirable than a green college graduate who has been studying it for years.

Digital Badges: Digital badges are currently marketed as more of a supplement to a degree than a replacement. However, given the similarity in the function they perform, it’s not exactly a leap to see how they could be used independently. While a bachelor’s degree can be as broad as Communications or Political Science, digital badges are more specialized and specific. Framed correctly, this could actually be something that the badges have over regular degrees.

As it stands currently, the weight of accreditation is perhaps the largest hurdle. Many people have never even heard of them, let alone hold them in any sort of regard.

Utilize Your Network

The days of going around and handing out resumés in person are over. Pretty much everything is done online because of the convenience it provides. This works against job-seekers without degrees. A line of code can instantly remove any application not containing predetermined requirements, making any of your other skills and qualifications irrelevant.

That is why it is so important to build and nurture a robust professional network. Finding a way around simply ‘shotgunning’ your resumé all over cyberspace is best thing you can do. Find more information on how to network effectively here: HOW ACCESSING THE HIDDEN MARKET CAN GET YOU A NEW JOB OFFER

On-the-Job Training Jobs

The idea that a college degree is a necessity to find a high paying job isn’t as absolute as it may seem. There are plenty of well-paying jobs that will teach you everything you need to know when you start. These positions can grow into lucrative careers.

Postal workers, dispatchers, claims adjusters, mechanical supervisors, and plant operators all make decent money with little to no previous work experience and more importantly, no degree requirement.

College is great, but it’s not for everyone. Never forget, some of the most famous billionaires in the world never went to college. So long as you have a solid work ethic and the perseverance to keep striving for success, there are avenues through which you can achieve it.