8 In-Demand Jobs That Don’t Require a University Degree

If you’ve chosen not to go to university, you might be wondering: what jobs exist for people who don’t have a university degree? It can be a tough question to think about.

Fortunately, there are plenty of great careers out there, with or without a degree, that fit a variety of lifestyles, work preferences and more. With a little research, you can find the career you’ve always wanted.

Whether you want to own your own business, create incredible dishes in a restaurant, help people plan trips of a lifetime-- or find work that lets you travel the world, there’s a job out there for you, without the lengthy university degree. Best of all, these jobs have great growth potential which means finding work-- and getting paid well-- should be likely.

Here are 8 in-demand jobs to consider:

Hotel Manager

Have you ever walked into a nice hotel, been greeted by a pleasant front desk receptionist in a beautiful lobby full of artwork, a piano player and large floral arrangements and wondered: who makes this all happen?

You’re seeing the combined efforts of a hotel manager and her team. Whether they’re running a boutique hotel or a 5-star corporate-owned resort, hotel managers are responsible for everything from managing staff to making decisions about how to give guests the best experience possible.

Another bonus? There are hotels all over the world. If you want a job that allows you to have a flexible location-- at home in Australia, abroad in Dubai or Paris-- then hotel management is one career path to consider.

Cruise Ship Officer

If seeing the world and getting paid while you do it sounds like the type of job you’d be interested in, working on a cruise ship could be the perfect fit!

Cruise ship officers can have a range of duties from finding talent to entertain guests to managing staff to planning meals to planning activities onboard and onshore. They work throughout the length of the cruise but will have free time and days off where they can travel into port and enjoy new places.

If one day you decide it’s time to stick with one place, cruise companies have headquarters all over the world-- and they’ll appreciate hiring people who have real experience aboard a ship.


For foodies and creative people, food is a major source of joy-- as is preparing food for others to enjoy. Best of all it’s another job with worldwide demand.

Chefs may be responsible for planning meals, creating the menu, overseeing fresh ingredients, choosing vendors and, of course, preparing meals for their guests. Some chefs also go on to open their own restaurants and become entrepreneurs. If sitting at a desk or working in an office isn’t for you, becoming a chef is one career to consider.

Restaurant Manager

Working closely with the chef, a restaurant manager may not spend time behind a grill or knife, but they keep restaurants running.

They’ll be responsible for managing reservations, motivating staff and creating schedules and hiring new employees, plus making sure there’s enough food in stock. During dinner service, they may fill in where they’re needed: answering the phone to take reservations, making sure orders are going out on time and speaking with guests to ensure they had a great experience.

Almost every restaurant you see has at least one manager that keeps things running smoothly-- and guests happy. If working in a restaurant is of interest to you, but you struggle to boil water or even make a sandwich-- becoming a restaurant manager is the route to take.

Business Owner

Have you wanted to be your own boss and make decisions? Building your own business will certainly let you call the shots and answer only to yourself and your customers.

Plenty of people who never graduated from university have built incredible businesses (Bill Gates and Steve Jobs are two famous dropouts who built fairly successful companies) and it gives you the opportunity to focus on something you love, so each day feels less like work.

Whether you choose to open your own advertising agency, landscape business, restaurant, car repair shop or perhaps even a business that hasn’t been thought of yet, business owners need great managerial skills and a solid grasp of everything from marketing to accounting and more.

Travel Agent

Maybe you love to travel and plan trips, but would rather stay in one place most days. Becoming a travel agent lets you help others plan their trips, negotiate prices, suggest hotels or beaches to visit, choose flights and decide what to see and do on their trip. If you find yourself planning hypothetical vacations in your free time, you may love this career.

Another cool perk? Some companies will give travel agents free offers or major discounts so travel agents will suggest a certain airline or destination to their clients.

Event Manager

From weddings to festivals to corporate conferences, every single event needs a great event manager. They’re the ones who make sure that the venue is chosen, food is delivered and the event is properly staffed-- plus ensure their clients’ wishes are met!

Event managers tend to be a mix of creative and highly organised. Their work doesn’t begin or end on the day of the event but instead starts weeks or months before the event so things go smoothly. They’re one part project manager, one part creative problem solver and completely vital to every event you’ve ever attended being successful.

How do I get into these careers?

While none of these jobs requires a university degree, some training and education are either highly recommended or necessary. For example, many restaurants require either previous experience or, at the very least, certification for basic kitchen skills. Industries like hospitality often operate through referrals of friends and former co-workers, so it’s important to use opportunities to create industry connections.

For many of these roles, leadership and management skills will come into play. Having guidance from experts in these areas will accelerate your career and ensure your leadership skills are top-notch.

Most importantly, these careers are highly customisable to suit your dreams and priorities, available in nearly all parts of the world -- and highly in demand.

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