There's no denying that employment has been a problem in the U.S. for the past few years. For veterans, the situation is slightly worse. Even though recent progress has been made with more jobs being created, former service members are still having difficulty finding employment after leaving the military. Although earning a college degree tends to help individuals find work and earn more money, there's an industry that can use driven individuals with no more than a high school diploma: transportation and logistics.
According to Fleet Owner, conventional wisdom shouldn't be shirked, and transportation job opportunities are one of many dwindling options for those without higher education. They reported that a survey from CareerBuilder listed 27% of employers having moved their educational requirements further up the ladder. Simply, almost a third of employers ask for individuals with college degrees where they used to only require a high school diploma.
"The economic value of a college education for workers has long been known, but as occupations evolve and as companies rely more heavily on professionals with strong interpersonal and technical skill sets, workers can't afford to stop their education at high-school," said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder.
On the list of jobs that don't require a college degree and offer a substantial salary, transportation currently ranks highest. As of 2014, there are 104,095 jobs available with a median hourly wage of $39.27. The only catch is that most of these positions call for applicants to be 21 years or older. However, if you've served in the military you most likely meet the age requirement or are very close to it.
One of the most heartening aspects to this situation is that the truck driving industry is experiencing a shortage of drivers. It's unlikely that the industry will undergo radical revisions in operating procedure any time soon, but now is an excellent time to apply. If you're a recently transitioned veteran 21 years or older, don't have a degree and don't plan on getting one, this may be one of the best industries to enter.
If you had any experience with trucking or transportation in the military, you may live in a state that provides certifications or fast-track programs due to your expertise. If you think your MOS synchs up with the transportation industry, check out your state department of labor's website and search for these types of programs. Or, simply inquire with local trucking companies about their requirements and if they know about how you can become a more qualified candidate.