Special Report

Highest Paying Jobs for High School Graduates

Industrial engineer writing on notepad in factory
Source: Thinkstock

10. First-line supervisors of mechanics, installers, and repairers
> Median annual wage: $63,010
> Typical training: None
> 2014 jobs: 447,100
> Projected change 2014-2024: 5.4%

Supervisors of mechanics, installers, and repairers need to be able to manage, coordinate, and think critically. Job titles in the field include facilities manager, electrical foreman, and maintenance supervisor. While it takes a certain skill set to be effective in these jobs, it does not necessarily require formal education beyond high school. Despite the low educational barrier to entry, the typical worker in the field earns $63,010 a year, far more than than the $27,809 a year the typical worker with no more than a high school diploma earns.

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers
Source: Thinkstock

9. Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers
> Median annual wage: $64,170
> Typical training: None
> 2014 jobs: 929,800
> Projected change 2014-2024: -1.9%

The typical farmer, rancher, and agricultural manager earns $64,170 a year. The different job titles often indicate different work places. While farmers and ranchers tend to own their own small family farms, agricultural managers mostly supervise work at larger agricultural establishments for companies or farmers. Similarly, while farmers are involved in all aspects of crop and livestock production, managers hire workers to carry out most of the physical labor tasks. Farm revenues can be unpredictable and dependent on a number of factors, such as the weather, and often times the government may subsidize income to ensure farmers earn a fair wage.

Most farmers and ranchers have some experience as a farmhand before coming into the position. While the job tends to require just a high school diploma, many universities offer postsecondary degrees in farm and land management.

Casino, Gambling
Source: Thinkstock

8. Gaming managers
> Median annual wage: $68,380
> Typical training: None
> 2014 jobs: 3,800
> Projected change 2014-2024: -0.6%

The typical gaming manager earns $68,380 a year, more than any other worker in gaming services such as dealers or slot supervisors. Gaming managers are responsible for ensuring that the casino floor runs smoothly, walking table to table and addressing any complaints from customers that may arise. They also keep an eye out for potential cheaters and make sure that all customers and employees are following the establishment’s rules.

Gaming managers are typically promoted from lower positions in the casino after gaining a few years of experience. Las Vegas has the highest concentration of gaming managers of any metro area and offers them the highest salaries in the country.

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