Highest paying jobs that require a 2 year degree in Durham

Written by:
May 7, 2022
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Highest paying jobs that require a 2 year degree in Durham

Although it all depends on what you make of it, choosing to further your education may lead to higher paying job opportunities. An associate’s degree takes just two years and offers more affordable tuition rates than a four-year school. As of April 2022, the average yearly salary for an individual with an associate’s degree comes out to $45,989.

Students have a plethora of specialties to choose from when obtaining a 2-year degree, from industry-specific roles in health care or IT or a more generalized education path. Salaries differ between areas of study, job type, experience, and, of course, location. A Georgetown University study that looked at job growth and education requirements through 2020 stated that 30% of job openings required “at least some college or an associate’s degree.” Students can choose to head right into the workforce after earning an associate’s, or continue their education toward earning a bachelor’s degree.

The unemployment rate for associate’s degree holders is only 2%, according to research from the Education Data Initiative. Having an associate’s degree under your belt is proven to increase one’s chance of holding a professional or management position in any number of industries, among them education and health, wholesale retail and trade, and professional and business services.

Stacker compiled a list of the highest and lowest paying jobs that require a 2-year degree in Durham-Chapel Hill, NC using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Jobs are ranked by 2021 annual mean wage.

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CHRISTOF STACHE // Getty Images

#20. Preschool teachers, except special education

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $30,480
- #376 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 1,150

National
- Annual mean salary: $36,550
- Employment: 370,940
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA ($49,990)
--- Ocean City, NJ ($49,720)
--- Vineland-Bridgeton, NJ ($49,560)
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#19. Veterinary technologists and technicians

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $39,410
- #93 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 240

National
- Annual mean salary: $37,860
- Employment: 109,490
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($57,990)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($52,220)
--- Santa Cruz-Watsonville, CA ($51,340)
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#18. Human resources assistants, except payroll and timekeeping

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $43,830
- #115 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 120

National
- Annual mean salary: $44,170
- Employment: 108,470
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($60,080)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($55,410)
--- Napa, CA ($54,120)
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#17. Environmental science and protection technicians, including health

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $48,700
- #84 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 60

National
- Annual mean salary: $50,960
- Employment: 31,860
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Kennewick-Richland, WA ($79,780)
--- Huntsville, AL ($78,320)
--- Birmingham-Hoover, AL ($76,970)
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#16. Paralegals and legal assistants

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $50,730
- #185 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 730

National
- Annual mean salary: $56,610
- Employment: 332,720
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($90,640)
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($76,960)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($75,640)

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#15. Electrical and electronics drafters

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $52,300
- #90 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 40

National
- Annual mean salary: $65,720
- Employment: 23,020
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($98,380)
--- Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX ($86,920)
--- New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($83,760)
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#14. Chemical technicians

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $52,650
- #104 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 220

National
- Annual mean salary: $53,700
- Employment: 63,490
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Billings, MT ($86,340)
--- Alaska nonmetropolitan area ($79,390)
--- Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV ($78,000)
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#13. Morticians, undertakers, and funeral arrangers

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $53,220
- #90 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 40

National
- Annual mean salary: $59,000
- Employment: 24,560
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Southwest Minnesota nonmetropolitan area ($82,420)
--- Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI ($79,240)
--- Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH ($73,940)
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#12. Civil engineering technologists and technicians

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $53,830
- #177 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 80

National
- Annual mean salary: $56,590
- Employment: 67,270
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($92,190)
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($83,250)
--- Baton Rouge, LA ($81,340)
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#11. Medical equipment repairers

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $54,860
- #90 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 110

National
- Annual mean salary: $55,090
- Employment: 48,510
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($84,820)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($84,030)
--- Reno, NV ($83,450)

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#10. Architectural and civil drafters

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $57,890
- #120 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 110

National
- Annual mean salary: $59,120
- Employment: 99,180
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, SC ($76,060)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($75,700)
--- Anchorage, AK ($75,650)
12 / 20
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#9. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $61,790
- #70 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 80

National
- Annual mean salary: $60,880
- Employment: 39,880
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Baton Rouge, LA ($112,580)
--- North Texas Region of Texas nonmetropolitan area ($91,580)
--- New Orleans-Metairie, LA ($91,550)
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Canva

#8. Physical therapist assistants

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $64,630
- #71 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 90

National
- Annual mean salary: $59,440
- Employment: 92,740
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($85,960)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($78,740)
--- Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA ($76,390)
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Canva

#7. Industrial engineering technologists and technicians

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $66,690
- #38 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 150

National
- Annual mean salary: $59,920
- Employment: 62,980
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, MS ($94,360)
--- Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX ($90,460)
--- Baton Rouge, LA ($86,020)
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#6. Radiologic technologists and technicians

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $67,550
- #83 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 830

National
- Annual mean salary: $64,840
- Employment: 206,720
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Vallejo-Fairfield, CA ($127,890)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($118,480)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($118,100)

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#5. Mechanical drafters

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $68,250
- #31 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 50

National
- Annual mean salary: $61,490
- Employment: 51,620
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($104,540)
--- Corpus Christi, TX ($90,720)
--- New Orleans-Metairie, LA ($82,590)
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Canva

#4. Dental hygienists

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $70,170
- #321 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 550

National
- Annual mean salary: $78,050
- Employment: 194,830
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA ($125,750)
--- San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA ($122,660)
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($119,320)
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Canva

#3. Occupational therapy assistants

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $71,070
- #24 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 50

National
- Annual mean salary: $63,420
- Employment: 42,750
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA ($85,570)
--- Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV ($77,720)
--- San Diego-Carlsbad, CA ($77,650)
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#2. Computer network support specialists

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $72,490
- #57 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 280

National
- Annual mean salary: $71,040
- Employment: 184,220
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA ($94,120)
--- Barnstable Town, MA ($93,670)
--- New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA ($92,190)
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#1. Electrical and electronic engineering technologists and technicians

Durham-Chapel Hill, NC
- Annual mean salary: $74,280
- #58 highest pay among all metros
- Employment: 300

National
- Annual mean salary: $68,310
- Employment: 115,270
- Metros with highest average pay:
--- Northeast Virginia nonmetropolitan area ($99,890)
--- Fort Collins, CO ($91,980)
--- Bakersfield, CA ($90,780)

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