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EURES (EURopean Employment Services)
News article31 January 2022European Labour Authority, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion3 min read

Top 8 vocational jobs that don’t require a bachelor’s degree

Interested in a career but not sure about university? Many industries are turning their focus from degrees towards practical skills. Check out our top 8 job opportunities that don’t require a daunting student loan!

Top 8 vocational jobs that don’t require a bachelor’s degree

1. Plumber

Trade jobs such as plumbing can be highly profitable with a never-ending demand from consumers. Plumbers install and maintain a range of equipment essential to everyday life, making it a secure form of employment. It may involve unpredictable hours and weekend work, but it does offer flexibility in terms of location and travel throughout the working day.

2. Dental hygienist

Every dentist needs a hygienist! It is likely you’ve seen a hygienist more than you’ve seen a dentist when checking up on your teeth. Hygienists are skilled in preventative oral care – they clean teeth, take x-rays, check for diseases and educate patients about good oral health. With good working hours and a stable demand for health care, spending your time in the clinic could be a good option.

3. IT support specialist

As IT has become essential for most businesses around the world, the need for IT specialists has grown. Despite using technology every day for our jobs, many people do not know what to do when something goes wrong with their equipment. Technical specialists help with everything from hardware issues to network support. If you are patient, good with people and comfortable navigating technology, this could be a great career choice.

4. Electrician

Electricians are another sought-after trade person. The job involves wiring, inspecting and maintaining electrical systems in residential homes and offices and can often offer paid on-the-job training. Electricians follow strict standards and regulations to ensure systems such as lighting and communication are safe. Apprenticeships can last up to five years, but provide the skills you need for a long career.

5. Graphic designer

Do you have a creative streak? Graphic designers are artists that often work on creating brochures, magazines, packaging and other marketing materials. They usually work with programmes such as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe InDesign so you will need to know your way around computer software, too.

6. Police officer

Fancy something meaningful? Police officers give back to the community by investigating crimes, responding to emergencies and making sure people adhere to laws. Depending on the country, they spend time on foot, in cars and even on horses as they patrol the streets. If you do not like the idea of sitting at a desk all day, this role could provide the variety you are looking for.

7. Civil engineer tech

Engineering firms and government agencies need civil engineer techs to help with designing commercial and residential projects. The role involves estimating costs, looking at blueprints, evaluating the conditions of various sites and making sure each project meets the design specifications and codes required.

8. Real estate appraiser

This job involves evaluating properties to estimate what they are worth. Real estate appraisers need to maintain an unbiased view as they calculate the value of buildings and the land they sit on. The profession requires attention to detail as the estimates provide important information to property managers and investors.

So, if you are not convinced university is right for you, consider inquiring about one of these roles. Keep in mind that the jobs, salaries and educational requirements do differ from country to country. For more advice on starting a new career, check out our ‘Top 4 tips for jobseekers on building a clean and professional online presence’.

Visit ESCO, the European classification of skills, competences and occupations translated into all 27 official EU languages. It describes, identifies and classifies 2,942 professional occupations and 13,485 skills relevant for the EU labour market and education and training.


Related links:

Adobe Photoshop

Adobe InDesign

Top 4 tips for jobseekers on building a clean and professional online presence


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