A Sustainable Workforce Starts With You

You Must Have a College Degree For These Low-Paying Jobs

The Construction Citizen team has written many times about the growing controversy over whether college is becoming obsolete and actually a liability for many in America.  While pursuing a four-year degree is still a great option for a lot of people, there is growing consensus that it's certainly not the best option for everyone.  That's evidenced by the fact that not only is there a college debt crisis, but you can now point to one career option after another that requires a college degree but doesn't pay anything close to what you'd need to make to pay off that debt in a reasonable amount of time while also trying to support a family.

In their humorous way, Buzzfeed just published a list of the top 25 low-paying jobs that require college degrees, and some of them might surprise you.  Marriage and family therapists, biological technicians, and journalists make less than $50K per year.  On the flip side, there are quite a few well-paying jobs that don't require a college degree, and our readers will hardly be shocked to learn that many of them are in the skilled trades.  Electrical powerhouse repair techs, power-line installers and repairers, as well as Caterpillar mechanics and others can make $50K, $60K, $80K and more depending on prior experience and how long a person is willing to stick with it.  The other critical thing that many jobs in the skilled trades offer that others often don't is a clear career path.

We've been encouraged to see the political leadership in Texas take significant steps to shift away from unrealistic “college-for-all” policies and pass reforms that should put more young people on a track for the skilled trades.  Former Workforce Commissioner Tom Pauken - who is now running for governor - has been pushing these changes for quite some time.  The question now is whether other states will move in the same direction or continue down the path that, for the moment, seems to be failing young people all across this country.

As always, your thoughts are welcome in the comments.


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