WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- If you don't have a college degree, can you find a job making higher than minimum wage?
Yes, but you do some skills and may need to pay for training. And you may have to get a little dirty.
Ever wonder what a garbage man makes? The ones who drive the automatic trucks that grab the garbage cans for you? With no college degree, they are making $19 dollars an hour. That's the same salary this letter carrier is making, although the postman says he started at $11 an hour and worked his way up. No degree required. Ditch diggers start at $15 an hour and a more skilled underground utility worker can make $22 an hour and up.
If you prefer more delicate work and you'd rather be inside working with people, how about the hair industry? No degree is required, but you do need to go to hair school. That cost Trisha Staples $15,000. Now, after three years as a stylist at Eclips Salon in McLean, at only 28 years old, she's worked her way up to a decent salary, close to $60,000.
Eclips has an apprentice program which starts employees out washing hair at $10 an hour. They do pull in at least $15 with tips.
Twenty-five-year-old Andy Kim, who immigrated from South Korea, went through the program and is now a full time stylist. He's making more than $30,000 a year, but he knows that there's great opportunity for growth in a high end salon like this. No college degree necessary. Owner Diane Fisher says all it takes are the skills required along with hard work and a very nice salary could follow.
"There's some here making $200,000. I think it's great. I love It. I love the fact I've been able to give people the opportunity to have a good salary and do what they want," Fisher said. She herself is a successful businesswoman with no college degree. Fisher started in the business 40 years ago working the desk at a salon in Burke.
"I had little kids and I needed something to get out of the house," she said. She was good at it and worked her way up to management. Eventually, she was able buy her own salon.