30 High Paying Jobs You Can Get With A High School Diploma

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There are many high-paying jobs you can get with a high school diploma. Some of the skills for doing these jobs are acquired on the job and may not require you to obtain special college training before you can do them. As a result, even without any prior experience, you can always do well in them. However, some may require a few extra training or apprenticeship. It doesn’t hurt to do extra for your future, you know.

This article will give you insight into the job options you can choose that might be a good fit for you.

Difference between a Diploma and a Certificate

Upon graduation from high school, you could either be awarded a diploma or certificate.

A school leaving qualification is an academic qualification awarded for the completion of high school. There are various names given to certificates, depending on your state. You could receive a Certificate of Completion, Certificate of Attendance, and so on. Besides, some states offer more than one certificate.

A high school diploma is a North American academic school leaving qualification awarded to an individual upon high school graduation. It is awarded after a course of study that lasted for four years (grades 9 to 12). The diploma, however, can only be awarded by the school according to the conditions of the state or provincial government.

There could be different conditions for awarding different high school diplomas. Usually, it is based on the blend of selected coursework that meets specific requirements for a particular stream and passing the grade the individual earned on the state exit examination.

Furthermore, a high school certificate, also known as a high school diploma, senior secondary leaving certificate, high school general certificate, or school certificate. The title all depends on the country or region.

There are also some conditions for earning a high school diploma, depending on the school involved. They include the number of years of school attendance before earning a high school diploma, how difficult the level of the class is, and the type of classes attended by the student.

READ ALSO: 10 High-Paying Graduate Jobs Attainable With Bachelor’s Degree

Can I Get A High School Diploma Online?

If you are at the point where you need to earn a high school diploma but are confused about how to attend, you can consider online education. Truth is, online education confers the same credit as traditional education. T

All you need to do is to avail yourself for classes. The possibilities of learning online are limitless. One of them is that the courses are self-paced and can be completed according to your learning capacity.

One of the reasons you should not joke with your high school diploma is that it is your gateway to success. When you have a high school diploma, it offers you some benefits over those who could not get to that point. Still doubtful? The US Census Bureau reported that adults with a high school education are offered an average of $11,000 per year over adults who did not finish high school. So, with your high school diploma, you’ve raised your bar.

Colleges and universities, as well as employers, recognize your diploma. However, before enrolling in online education, check if the school is accredited. Consider your budget too and go for a cost-effective program if you do not have much money.

The bottom line is that with cutting-edge technology and cheaper online platforms, there are no excuses again to stop you from raising your academic bar.

Top Jobs You Can Get with only a High School Diploma

Below are some of the best jobs you can get with just a high school diploma:

1. Dispensing optician

This professional works in an optometry office. Their duties involve taking care of the administrative assignments including scheduling appointments and providing answers to questions put forward by customers. They can help the customers choose the correct eyeglasses or contact lenses while advising them on what to do to keep their eyes from further damage. 

Dispensing technicians are expected to complete on-the-job training and may be compelled to get a certificate before they can practice in some states. You may also go for an apprenticeship.

READ ALSO: 21 High Paying Jobs For Philosophy Majors

2. Pharmacy technician

Pharmacy technicians dispense prescribed drugs, medications, and other pharmaceutical products to customers. They work in a pharmacy and may be involved in packaging, and labeling drug bottles, giving sound advice to customers on the usage of specific medications, and completing payment transactions. Aside from working in pharmacies, they can also work in hospitals, groceries, and care homes.

You will be required to complete one year of accredited pharmacy technician training. If possible, get certified to get more options for work.

3. Mail carrier

With a high school diploma, you can work as a mail carrier. Mail carriers assemble and deliver mails to residences and businesses in the vicinity. They may walk, drive trucks or bikes to deliver the mails. They work in government establishments at the Postal Service. 

A mail carrier must have a driver’s license and a good driving record. 

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4. Transportation, storage, and distribution manager

This manager plans, guides or brings together some transportation, storage, or distribution activities as applicable by organizational guidelines, putting into consideration, governmental regulations. It does not require formal education beyond high school but needs previous and close work experience.

5. Administrative service manager

Admin service managers are in charge of handling the auxiliary utilities of businesses. Some of them manage the buying and delivery of equipment and supplies, leaving others to supervise the procedures of buildings and grounds. You need previous work experience in purchasing and sales or warehousing and shipping. 

6. Boilermaker 

These professionals got their experience through apprenticeship. Boilermakers make building boilers or largely closed barrels that encase hot liquids and gases. The job is a very risky one, which makes it unattractive to people. Some of the common injuries associated with the job are burns, scalds, cuts, and fractures. Most of the jobs for boilermakers are based on contracts. Boilermakers, sometimes, have to travel too far distance and stay in worksites to get the job done.

7. Media and communication equipment worker

These professionals make sure that audio and visual systems for radio, television, and other media are functioning as required. 

8. Transportation inspector

A transportation inspector ensures that equipment in trains, airplanes, ships, and other means of transportations are safe and in good condition.

9. Gaming manager

A gaming manager oversees gaming tables, dealers, and customers at gaming houses. They ensure that clients who come to play casino and the workers strictly adhere to the policies of the establishment. They also supervise the cash transactions, liaise with security teams, and serve customers according to their needs. Owners of casinos usually train their employees on how they want them to work.

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10. Power plant operator

A power plant operator observes, manages, and controls heavy machinery and equipment in energy production companies. They make sure that every process and happening under their watch are in safe and smooth-running condition. In some establishments, power plant operators handle nuclear reactors, electric generators, or water turbines. This position requires that, even though you need just a high school diploma, you should also acquire some special training at a trades school. However, if you can prove that you are able to do the job with some years of experience, you can get employment.

11. Audiovisual technician

These technicians operate and manage the equipment used in presentations or entertainment shows that involve audio and visual components. Such equipment could be microphones, speakers, soundboards, projectors, screens, and so on. They also set up the equipment before the beginning of the show and clear them away at the end. You can obtain training by understudying a professional in this field and gaining experience.

12. Firefighter

A firefighter is responsible for attending to emergencies involving fire outbreaks. Firefighters put out the fire and rescue individuals trapped in the building. They put on personal protective equipment (PPE) before carrying out the operation. They specialize in using fire extinguishers of all types to put out a fire. You will need to attend firefighting training to learn how to put out the fire and the safety measures to put in place. You will also learn how to administer first aid to victims of fire incidents.

13. Police dispatcher

These professional radios interact with police officers and direct them to the crime scenes or areas where incidents occurred. They may also be in the position to answer calls to 911 while directing the law enforcement agents to the place where the emergency occurred. For you to be hired, you must pass a civil service test, including a background check, drug test, and psychological assessment.

14. Industrial mechanic

An industrial mechanic repairs and maintains heavy-duty equipment in a company. They make sure the equipment is in order, remove the malfunctioning ones and install new ones. Safety measures must be followed while operating the equipment. To become qualified for this role, you will need a year to undergo apprenticeship training.

15. Hotel managers

A hotel manager manages all undertakings going on in a hotel. They supervise the staff, attend to the customers and handle any problem that arises while discharging their duties. This position is not assumed without previous experience in hotel jobs. You can also get there by earning a promotion from your employer. If you aspire for this position, you might pursue an internship program that will enable you to do so.

16. Farm manager

A farm manager supervises the daily activities going on in a farm. They also oversee the duties of the staff, inspect the crops and operate equipment used in the farm. You can get to this position by working your way to the top. Make sure you possess a good work ethic too.

17. Faller

Also known as lumberjacks, fallers take down trees from the forest. They use special cutting techniques to handle the task. Breaking into this kind of job does not take much. All you need is a little training to prune your skills. 

18. Forest fire inspector

A forest fire inspector prevents fire outbreaks in the forest. They inspect the forest for fire risks, put fire policies into place, and recommend ways forest fire can be mitigated. You may need to get trained on how to prevent fire and that does not take quite a long time to figure out. 

19. Distribution manager

This professional supervises and sees the transportation of goods and products. Large establishments, manufacturing companies, and wholesale dealers employ them to help get their products to their consumers. In addition, they organize shipments, input data into the system, and oversee a team of employees. To get to this position, you might work with a senior employee in this field for some time and master the art of the business.

20. Insurance agent

An insurance agent sells insurance products like life, health, and general insurance. They attract customers to insurance companies and convince them to purchase insurance packages, depending on their ability. They help the customers in choosing the best packages and put them through on the workings of insurance. To be an insurance agent, you must acquire licensure to practice. Good customer relations and marketing skills will be added advantages.

21. Commercial pilot

A commercial pilot operates airplanes and carries passengers and goods. They ensure the safety of their clients by conducting preflight checks on the aircraft. They work hand-in-hand with air traffic control officers on their take-offs and landing and the basis to do so. You must be licensed to be able to perform this role. You will also be required to pass a knowledge test and accumulate flight hours to qualify you for further tests.

22. Correctional officer and jailer

A correctional officer and jailer guard prisoners shepherd them to jail, court, and other locations. They can be employed by the state and federal governments. 

23. Braille proofreader 

A braille proofreader is responsible for identifying errors before the books, scripts, and so on are taken to the prints. This is a way to help blind people get the correct information they require. What you need most is your ability to read braille.

24. Costume attendant

A costume attendant can always be found where actors and singers are found. They are the ones who make arrangements for their clothing. The costume attendant selects the best outfits for the entertainer and ensures the right costumes are worn between performances. Aside from the high school diploma, you need short-term training on becoming a costume attendant.

25. Automatic door repairer

Automatic doors do not take care of themselves. Someone is always handy to put things straight when they get bad. An automatic door repairer installs, services, and repairs doors that open and close on their own. You only need a high school diploma and some apprenticeship to master the job.

26. Wastewater treatment plant operator

Some people see this job as a dirty job. They might be right, however, this job puts food on some people’s tables. As a wastewater treatment plant operator, you are going to find yourself close to sewage, muck, grease traps, and sewer lines. But then, the pay is an exact way to wash off all the unpleasantness of the job. The demand for this job is also on the high side since many people could give up anything to go close to the sewage. 

27. Underwater demolition driver

An underwater demolition driver uses scuba gear and tools to explosives underwater for ignition. That aside, they inspect, repair, and install equipment and structure in the subsurface. You need on-the-job training for you to master the skills.

28. Private investigator

A private investigator gathers analyses, compiles, and reports information for clients regarding any potentially illegal person or establishment. This job is highly risky and you could find yourself in areas that could endanger your life. However, the pay is worth every risk. A high school diploma and on-the-job training will suffice to land you this job.

29. Hearing aid specialist

This job does not require much from you. You will only need to fix hearing aids on individuals with hearing difficulties. Before then, you will need to test the efficacy of the hearing aid to know how functional it is. You will also take ear impressions, prepare, design, and modify ear simulations. Moderate on-the-job training is all you need, together with your high school diploma. 

30. Undertaker

An undertaker is also known as a funeral director. They are responsible for arranging and directing interment services, while coordinating conveyance of bodies to the morgue, interviewing family members, and selecting the right pallbearers for the job. The job is tough and needs you to be much compassionate. However, it pays a lot. You can attain this position by learning on the job. You may start from scratch and work your way to the top. It’s just a matter of time, everything falls into place.


There are endless possibilities to what you can achieve with your high school diploma. You have a whole lot of jobs you can choose from. Check out the ones that can blend with your passion and interest, then, make your choice. If there is a need, you can always upgrade your skills. That would help you to remain relevant in your field.


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Ajah Excel is a team growth and performance expert with over nine years of experience in blogging and personal development.
He leads a team of 36 crazy, restless innovators with an enviable work culture at Silicon Africa Technologies Limited – a fast-rising tech firm from the SouthEast.
Excel is the founder of and WriterGig.
He is also the co-organizer of TEDx Ikenegbu and convener of Social Media Fest.
He is a vibrant learner who yearns to share his knowledge to educate and inspire young Africans.
He has a B.Tech in Information Management Technology with certifications in growth hacking, effective communication, leadership, team, and personal development, to mention a few.
Ajah Anayochukwu Excel is a passionate public speaker, creative writer, and brand storyteller.

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