While some are taking the opportunity to pursue their dream jobs, many are simply looking for a job, any job, that pays a decent salary. Below is our list of some of the best paying entry level jobs, some of which require college or specialized training and others that require nothing more than a high school diploma and solid work ethic.
Education/Training: Many sales jobs require no formal education; but some, especially those dealing with scientific or technical products, will require a four-year college degree in addition to excellent interpersonal, communication, and persuasive skills.
Education/Training: Two to four years of college (for an ADN or BSN); accelerated 12-18 month programs are available for people who already have a four-year degree in another field. State licensure is also required after passing an approved nursing course.
3. Crime Scene Cleaner
Starting salary: $35,000-$40,000*
Education/Training: Some states and employers require certifications in how to safely clean and dispose of biohazardous waste while protecting yourself and others from contamination; but in some cases you can get started with just a high school diploma.
4. Mail Carrier
Starting salary: $30,000-$40,000
Education/Training: Must be over 18 years old, have a good command of the English language, and pass a written examination that measures speed and accuracy at checking names and numbers and the ability to memorize mail distribution procedures.
5. Toll Booth Collector
Starting salary: $23,000-$38,000
Education/Training: High school diploma or GED. Must be content working alone in a tight space day after day.
6. Truck DriverStarting salary: $29,000-$35,000
Education/Training: Requirements vary by state and employer; but at minimum you must be 21 years old, pass a physical exam, and hold a valid commercial driver's license.
7. Construction Worker
Starting salary: $25,000-$49,000**
Education/Training: No formal training is required for the most basic duties, although apprenticeship programs often require a high school diploma or GED and the highest salaries will be reserved for those entering the field with a four-year bachelor's degree.
Starting salary: $23,000-$35,000
Education/Training: Licensure requirements vary by state; most require some form of training that can include a few months to a few years in a classroom setting, on-the-job experience as an apprentice, or a combination of both.
9. PlumberStarting salary: Apprentice: $25,000-$30,000/Journeyman: $31,000-41,000
Education/Training: Applicants must have a high school diploma/GED and be at least 18 to get started. Training is acquired on the job via apprenticeship status, which usually lasts four to five years, after which certification is required to achieve Journeyman status.
10. Garbage Collector
Starting salary: $20,000-$35,000
Education/Training: Applicants usually need a high school diploma or GED and must pass both written and physical exams, have a valid commercial driver's license, and (frequently) must pass a criminal background check.