It's no surprise that doctor's make a lot of money. Depending on the type of medicine they practice, doctors can make an average of $148,000 to $267,000 a year .

But just because you didn't go to medical school doesn't mean you have to give up your dreams of a salary that high. In fact, in some cases you don't even need to go to college at all to earn a salary of $150,000 or higher.

We found nine jobs that, if everything goes right, can earn people a doctor's salary without requiring a college degree.

Read on to see nine potentially high-paying jobs you can do with only a high school education.

Computer and IT manager

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As it turns out, sitting at home on your laptop while your peers are out attending frat parties could seriously pay off.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics' wage estimates for May 2018 revealed that computer and information systems managers are earning an average of $152,860 more than than the average podiatrist, lawyer, and physicist. And according to HackerRank's 2018 Student Developer Report , nearly a third of all developers say they're entirely self-taught.

Read more: 15 ways to be more productive and manage your time better, according to career experts

Airline pilot

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Not all aspiring pilots have to go to college, either.

While major airlines such as Delta, American, and United all require bachelor's degrees, Horizon Air only requires a high school diploma or equivalent, according to a current job posting. And in a new initiative , Alaska Airlines aims to source half its new hires from Horizon Air, specifically. That $169,560 salary never looked so easy.

Air traffic controller

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Speaking of the aviation industry, the top 10% of air traffic controllers are actually earning more than the average aviator $178,650 as well as the average dentist . According to the Federal Aviation Administration , applicants can apply with "three years of progressively responsible work experience" in lieu of a bachelor's degree.


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In some cases, a good business model is far more valuable than a BA. The Bureau of Labor Statistics' earnings estimates don't account for self-employed workers, but PayScale's data shows that even though small-business owners make an average of $71,455, the top earners are making upward of $180,000.

Likewise, a 2017 SurveyMonkey study showed that the number of small-business owners with only a high-school education actually is higher than the number with college degrees.

Freelance writer

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While there are plenty of freelancers who are barely surpassing starving writer status, at the other end of the spectrum, there are folks like Holly Johnson, who makes more than $200,000 annually (and that doesn't even include the income from her blog, , according to Forbes .

Johnson's not the only one. Another freelancer, Kayla Lee, says she also makes nearly that amount without any popular blog, bestselling book, or social media following. Pipe dream, you say? Not necessarily.

Read more: How to save $1 million, according to the experts

Chief executives

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One doesn't have to rise to the level of Mark Zuckerberg (who, by the way, is a Harvard dropout) to earn $200,000 as a chief executive. In fact, the national average is even slightly higher than that amount.

Gradually moving up in a company can eventually lead to a CEO position, and these days, companies from Google to Hilton have dropped "college degree" from their hiring requirements , CNBC reported last year.

Large commercial farmer

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Farmers in the US are sometimes assumed to be penniless, when in fact, the top 10% are actually making more than your average psychiatrist, according to CNN .

The bigger the farm, the more their income, of course, but don't think for a second that you need the world's biggest ranch to make more than your family physician. The USDA's forecasted income for a cotton farmer in 2019, for instance, is $245,300.

Read more: 9 mind-blowing facts about the US farming industry

Celebrity bodyguard

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If you find that your fantasies of becoming a celebrity aren't working out for you, there's always bodyguarding to fall back on. No textbooks are required; only ample gym time and flexible hours.

Kent Moyer, founder of the World Protection Group, told ABC News that celebrities pay between $250,000 and $1.5 million for personal protection. Vanity Fair reported in 2016 that one-off events can pay up to $1,000 per day while mobile bodyguards can make up to $800,000 a year.

Pro gamers

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Who would ever have thought that playing video games would grant you a bigger paycheck than most doctors make?

One Bloomberg article from 2018 reported that the average salary for the North American League of Legends Championship Series' 50 starting players was a whopping $320,000. These days, 20-something-year-old gamers are treated like esteemed athletes.

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