The world of Information Technology may be stabilizing in growth, but there's still a wealth of jobs out there that need to be filled. This won't be a lecture that talks up the wonders of high-dollar IT industries; there's a lot more to talk about in the more down-to-earth, realistic escapes from other industries that can help people without an education get a leg up. If you don't have a high school diploma and don't know what you'd do once you get it, here's what the IT industry has for people looking for a better life.
Sliding Into Better Lifestyles
Every industry has its rock stars, so instead of going on about mega paychecks for app developers and engineers, take a look at the current job opportunities. Depending on your state, you may have a low minimum wage just a bit above $7 per hour or $9 per hour. These jobs are in retail, warehouse stocking, fast food, and other basic services.
Why would you work there when you can find the same pay or better with less effort? That's what the IT industry is in some places, a bunch of entry level jobs that have a lot less suffering and a lot of ways to move up.
That isn't the most glamorous statement, of course. Why bother getting education for a new career if you're getting the same pay? An easier job isn't always worth the switch, but it's more likely that you'll get a better entry level paycheck. Many work from home opportunities such as customer service for technical companies can start at $10 per hour and up.
Is that a little better? Even if you miss out on the great opportunities or don't cut it for the most powerful IT jobs, you have a better lifestyle with better pay. In addition to the pay, you gain experience in technical jobs to make your next attempt at working up the ladder.
Unfortunately, for many of these jobs, you need a high school diploma or General Educational Development (GED) certification to apply. It's worth the time, because even at entry level, there's a lot of hope and advancement opportunities.
Getting More Education And Pay After A GED
One frightening prospect for those without a GED is knowing what to do after the GED. What's the point of getting a GED if the high school-level jobs aren't that great? That leads to one great part of the IT industry: if you're mediocre, you can get paid to train yourself.
The previous section used Glassdoor.com's listing of salaries for different companies. Some info may change over time, but many entry-level technical support jobs offer either education reimbursement or will pay for continued education. You just need to study, and studying is a lot easier when you're not working in a hot kitchen or carrying heavy boxes in a warehouse with no connection to a higher career.
There's a constant debate in the IT industry over whether certifications or college degrees are the way to go. The fact that it exists shows that there are employers and high-powered professionals ready to give you a chance with just a certification. Entry level certifications such as CompTIA's A+ certification or the Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) are relatively low in cost compared to even the yearly costs of a 2 year degree.
Get in while it's cheap. Contact an adult education center, such as Pioneer Career & Technology Center, to get your degree and to find IT opportunities as well as classes to help you with certification and IT training in general.
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