5 Careers That Require a College Degree and Pay for Themselves Quickly

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Because of today's economy, many students need graduate school loans or other types of loans to help pay for school. However, some students study for degrees that won't really allow them to have a great paying career once they graduate. Therefore, it may be difficult for some college graduates to repay their loan.

Here are five careers that require a college degree, but pay for themselves quickly:


There are many jobs associated in the medical field, but almost every one of them pays well. Moreover, because people will always need doctors and other health experts, there will always be jobs available for college graduates. In fact, studies predict that job growth in the medical field will rise around 10 percent within the next few years.

Salaries for a medical job vary, but nurses make $35,000 annually on average, family doctors make $178,000 annually on average, and a typical surgeon makes $303,000 annually on average.


Like doctors, there will always be a need for lawyers, though job growth for this field is predicted to stay the same for the next few years. However, many lawyers open their own firm or collaborate with other lawyers, rather than working for someone else.

In May 2008, the median salary for a typical lawyer was $110,590. This statistic is the result of a study conducted on all wage and salary lawyers. Many lawyers set their own prices for their services.

Computer Programmer

Technical careers became very popular around 2003. IT schools began opening up all around the country, offering quality education that would prepare students for a lucrative career with computers and other technology.

Many students take IT classes online, making it very easy and convenient for them to obtain a degree for this field.

The average salary for all computer programmers in 2009 was $74,690. However, this salary varies based on education, work experience and length of time working for a single employer. Though this salary is not as great as other careers, degrees in this field are not as expensive as other fields.


Jobs for accountants are expected to grow as much as 15 percent by 2015. Obtaining a business degree now will make a path for a lucrative and relaxed career.

The average salary for an accountant has remained at a steady $64,000 annually for the last few years. However, like other careers, this number will vary based on certain circumstances.

Criminal Justice

A career in criminal justice is very rewarding. There are many fields for this career, making it very easy for someone with a degree in this field to get a job in criminal justice.

Some jobs in criminal justice only require an Associate's degree, making it very easy for employees to repay their graduate loans. Additionally, a select few jobs in criminal justice do not require any degree, though a degree will increase their annually salary by as much as $15,000.

The annual salary for a job in criminal justice in 2010 was $31,000.

These five careers pay well enough to repay graduate loans [https://www1.salliemae.com/schools/financial_aid/loans/grad_prof/grad_student_loans/] very quickly.

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