Top jobs that don’t require a degree to launch a career – and there’s some fantastic choices

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Many young people will be modifying their career choices following the uproar over A Level grades.

The furore surrounding wide-ranging downgrades of results has caused lots of students to have second thoughts about continuing their education at university with some planning an early entry into the jobs market insetad.

According to teen magazine Future-Mag, more than half (54 per cent) of graduates say they’d think again about choosing university as the best way to find a job.

And there are plenty of routes into careers that that don’t require a degree – partly because of a rise in apprenticeships created since the government increased investment in professional training.

Here’s a line-up of some top jobs available without a degree.

Nurse

The government has just announced a massive £172 million investment into nursing, the money is to allow healthcare employers to take on up to 2,000 nursing degree apprentices every year over the next four years.

Nursing apprenticeships offer an alternative to full-time university courses, allowing people to earn a salary while their tuition costs are paid. At the end of the apprenticeship – which usually takes four years – apprentices are able to qualify as fully registered nurses.




You’ll usually need 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a degree apprenticeship

Pay: £24,907 to £37,890

Air Traffic Controller

The work is challenging and demanding, but it’s immensely rewarding. Air traffic controllers give information and advice to airline pilots to help them take off and land safely and on time.

Applicants have to be over 18 and have at least five GCSEs or equivalent at Grade 4 or above (previously A-C) or Scottish Nationals 5 Grade A-C or equivalent, including English and maths.



Heathrow Airport

As well as having a good level of physical and mental fitness, you must satisfy the basic medical requirements set down by the Civil Aviation Authority.

The National Air Traffic Control Service (NATS) has developed a series of games to help gauge whether you’re right for this career.

Pay: £17,000 to £50,000

Solicitor

Solicitors advise clients about the law and act on their behalf in legal matters, and can specialise in a host of areas, including contract, criminal, commercial and family law, and much more.



Solicitors can specialise in many areas

You can now become a solicitor by training on the job since new solicitor apprenticeships (level 7) which were approved in 2015. You’ll need good A levels and it can take five to six years to complete.

Pay £25,000 to £100,000

Visual Effects Artist

They help produce special visual effects and will be employed by post production companies working on commercials, television series and feature films.

You could do a practical short course at London’s MetFilm School (Ealing Studios) and try to get into the industry that way, or do an apprenticeship via Next Gen

Pay from £18,000 to £50,000 once qualified

Computer forensic analyst (cyber security)

They might work for the police or security services, or for computer security specialists and in-house teams following and analysing electronic data to uncover commercial espionage, theft, fraud or terrorism.




Cyber security professionals are in high demand in both the public and private sector and there’s a severe shortage of qualified professionals. Cyber security higher apprenticeships (level 4) are offered by major infrastructure and energy companies and the security services.

Pay £20,000 to £60,000

Estate Agent

Estate agents sell and rent out commercial and residential property, acting as negotiators between buyers and sellers.

Some firms offer an intermediate apprenticeship as a junior estate agent, or you may be able to start as a trainee sales negotiator and learn on the job.

Pay: Estate agents often work on commission which means that you have a basic salary and also earn a percentage of the sale or rental price of any property you sell or rent. £15,000 to £40,000

Police Officer

This is another profession where the Government has pumped in large amounts of cash, so now could be the right time to apply.



Police community support officers have many powers, but not the power of arrest

There is no formal educational requirement, for direct application but you will have to be physically fit and pass written tests. Or, you could start by doing a police constable degree apprenticeship. You’ll usually need: 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and college qualifications like A levels for a degree apprenticeship.

You can get a taste of what it’s like to work with the police by volunteering as a special constable.

You could also get paid work as a police community support officer (PCSO) before applying for police officer training.

Pay £20,000 to £60,000

Public Relations officer

Public relations (PR) officers manage an organisation’s public image and reputation. They plan campaigns, monitor and react to the public and media, writing and editing press releases, speeches, newsletters, leaflets, brochures and websites, and creating content on social media.



Public relations can be a rewarding career

There is no set entry route to become a public relations officer but it may be useful to do a relevant subject at college, like a Foundation Certificate in Marketing. You can work towards this role by doing a public relations assistant higher apprenticeship.

You’ll usually need: 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship

Pay £18,000 to £90,000

Youth worker

Work with young people and help them develop personally and socially. They might work with local services, youth offending teams or voluntary organisations and community groups.

They might help organise sports and other activities, or be involved on counselling and mentoring, or liaising with authorities. Many enter youth work as a volunteer or paid worker, but you can now qualify via a youth work apprenticeship.

Pay £23,250 to £37,500

Army officer

Undergo leadership training before choosing from a wide range of specialisms, including; platoon commander, helicopter pilot, intelligence, logistics – even military medicine and healthcare.

You’ll typically need 5 GCSEs at grade 9 to 4 (A* to C) or above and 2 A levels. You’ll have to take aptitude and ability tests, pass a fitness test and interview before a more rigorous assessment to see if you’re capable mentally and physically.

Pay £27,273 to £42,009



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