Engineering Majors Provide Highest Salaries to College Grads
If you’re looking for the best paying majors possible, you might want to reconsider that business major. In a new survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the majors that result in the highest starting salaries are increasingly coming not from liberal arts or business majors, but from STEM fields, as in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, with engineering-related majors in particular standing out as the most frequently well-paid career for recent college grads.
Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Census Bureau, and Job Search Intelligence, which is a company devoted entirely to measure salary levels, NACE studied the salaries of college graduates in 2012 for over 90 fields and 400,000 U.S. employers, and found that the most frequently well-earning jobs came from majors that focused on varying forms of engineering. Over the course of 2011 to 2012, the salaries of engineers increased 3.9 percent on average, with aerospace engineers in particular receiving the largest increase of 8.3 percent for a total annual salary of $64,000 on average.
“This is not surprising since the supply of these graduates is low, but the demand for them is so high,” said NACE executive director Marilyn Mackes.
Unsurprisingly, given the explosive growth of smartphones and tablets in the last decade, computer engineers topped the list for highest paying jobs immediately after graduation by earning $70,400. Chemical engineers come in second with $66,400, and computer scientists earned $64,400. Other STEM-related majors also fared well in the report, particularly in technological fields, with nine out of the 10 degrees listed by NACE being related to technology.
So if the current state of the job market post-graduation has you a bit worried, and you’ve been considering of changing your liberal arts major as a result, here’s NACE’s full list of highest paying majors for 2012:
Top Paying Majors for College Grads in 2012
1.) Computer Engineering - $70,400
2.) Chemical Engineering – $66,400
3.) Computer Science – $64,400
4.) Aerospace/Aeronautical Engineering - $64,000
5.) Mechanical Engineering - $62,900
6.) Electrical/Electronics Engineering – $62,300
7.) Civil Engineering – $57,600
8.) Finance - $57,300
9.) Construction Science – $56,600
10.) Information Science and Systems – $56,100