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Profitable Professions That Don’t Require A Bachelor’s Degree

TristaOctober 12, 2019
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3. Pharmacy Technician

While becoming a pharmacist is an incredibly rigorous process that requires as many as eight years of school and demanding licensing exams, becoming a pharmacy technician is, thankfully, considerably easier. While some pharmacy technicians have a four-year degree, it is not necessarily a requirement for employment at most major pharmacies. Pharmacy technicians most often work in pharmacies, assisting pharmacists with dispensing medications. Others work in nursing homes or private medical practices where they also assist pharmacists. They work directly with customers or patients and need excellent customer service and communication skills. Attention to detail and accuracy are also absolute musts since life-saving medications are involved.

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Many vocation and technical skills offer two-year or shorter pharmacy technician programs, and some pharmacies provide extensive on-the-job training for new pharmacy technicians. As with many significant medical positions, the pharmacy technician position sees explosive growth due to the rapidly aging US population and the increased demand for prescription medications. While the median pay is one of the lowest on the list at $33,950, the sky-high demand will likely lead to higher wages as pharmacies begin to compete to retain top-notch pharmacy technicians. If you like customer service but want to move to a step above retail sales, becoming a pharmacy technician could be a well-paying fit for you.

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2. Respiratory Therapist

It should come as no surprise to see another medical job on this list since so many require a surprisingly obtainable and far more affordable associate’s, or two-year degree, instead of a bachelor’s four-year degree. Respiratory therapists help patients with every element of the respiratory system. These professionals usually work in hospitals to help those hospitalized with respiratory system conditions or after surgeries that impact the respiratory system. They often help patients regain lung capacity and strength and provide a lot of comfort and care for those dealing with emphysema, lung cancer, and many more serious conditions.

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In most states and hospital systems, you only need an associate’s degree to become a practicing respiratory therapist. You will need to pass an examination conducted by The National Board of Respiratory Care to become a respiratory therapist. However, your associate’s degree or vocational program will help you work towards passing that licensure examination. Respiratory therapists have a relatively high median income of $61,300. That will likely only go higher as demand soars as part of the general shortage of healthcare workers amidst the growing demand for healthcare services. As with nursing and other specialties, respiratory therapy is very likely to see immense growth.

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1. Medical Records Technician

An underappreciated element of the medical field is the immense amount of work that maintains the extensive, sensitive records that medical care provides. The wizards managing all of that data are medical records technicians who specialize in organizing, storing, and protecting a healthcare network’s patients’ confidential health data. If you’ve ever had to ask for health records to be released to either yourself or another health care provider, you likely spoke to a medical records technician. Those who are comfortable with computers and have an excellent eye for accuracy and attention to detail would be ideal fits for this fast-paced, high-tech profession.

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Becoming a medical records technician typically requires a two-year associate’s degree and then passing some certification exams that indicate proficiency in medical abbreviations, coding language, and more. The median pay is somewhat lower than direct patient care providing medical fields at $37,887. However, like all of the other medical careers we’ve discussed, it shows promising signs of continued growth. As more and more older Americans require more medical care, there will be correspondingly large increases in the amount of medical records data that must be organized and maintained. Hospitals continue to transition to exclusively digital record-keeping, which will necessitate more trained medical records technicians.

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