Dry wallers can make nearly $40,000 without a college degree.

The economics of education is getting a big challenge, as the price of a degree keeps spiraling and incomes and jobs after graduating run far behind what it takes to pay down college debt loads.

Here, Wall Street Journal staffer Eric Morath taps data from the Labor Department’s 2016-17 Occupational Outlook Handbook showing the pay for 576 occupations, some of which require a college degree or higher, and some of which only require training. Morath writes:

With an associate’s degree, which typically takes two years at a college to complete, one could qualify to become an air-traffic controller. That job boasts median annual salary of $122,340. With a bachelor’s degree, architectural and engineering managers earn $130,620 a year.

And closer to home building, we learn the following:

Among those with no formal education credential, drywall and ceiling-tile installers earn the most, taking home a median annual income of $38,970.

Read more >