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Do Jobs Require Proof of a High School Diploma?

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The right job could open up possibilities for your future and opportunities to live a life of purpose and fulfillment. Many jobs require that employees earn a minimum of a high school diploma or its equivalent. Though they often do not ask for proof, a diploma or GED indicates that the employee has the basic education necessary to complete the job’s assigned tasks. While it is not always necessary to earn a college degree prior to starting your career, earning your high school diploma or GED significantly increases your chances of securing a job that offers you a bright future.

Tip

While some employers will insist on seeing proof of a high school diploma, others will not. It's up to the individual employer.

Proof of Education

Employers do not routinely require job applicants to prove that they have earned their high school diploma or GED. However, some employers may request that you furnish a copy of your high school diploma or GED in order to save them time and money on conducting education verification for all applicants. Though it is rare for an employer to ask for proof, it is wise to keep your diploma and other important documents, like your birth certificate, in a safe place that is easy to access when needed.

Age Requirements and Work

Some positions require you to be 18 years old and have at least a high school diploma before you can begin work. If you appear to be under the age of 18, an employer may ask to see identification in order to prove your date of birth, and may sometimes ask to see your high school diploma or GED. Other jobs may not require applicants to be at least 18, but do require a high school diploma or GED to begin work. Bring your folder of important documents to your job interview so that you are prepared if and when they ask for proof of education or identification.

College Degrees and Work

Jobs that require you to have a college education often do not ask for proof that you have earned a high school diploma or GED. When you earn a college degree, it is a given that you have completed your high school education. You may be under 18 and enrolled in college, and therefore have college hours on your resume or on your job application. If this is the case, you may still have to prove that you have finished high school or earned your GED. If you are under 18 and in college, you may still have to prove you completed a high school education.

Honesty is the Best Policy

Employers may contact the school you claim to have graduated from to verify that you do in fact have a high school diploma. Others use specialized background check services to verify your educational background, employment history, credit history and any criminal records. Integrity is key to a bright future and a solid career, so it is best to tell the truth about your educational background on any job application and on any resume you submit to an employer. If the employer has reason to suspect that you are not telling the truth, he may ask you to produce proof you graduated from high school or earned your GED.

How To Get a Copy of Your Diploma

If you need to get a copy of your high school diploma, contact the school you attended. If the school has been closed, contact the school district, even if you went to a private school. The school district will likely have information on where the school’s records were stored after it was closed.

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About the Author

Leyla Norman has been a writer since 2008 and is a certified English as a second language teacher. She also has a master's degree in development studies and a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology.