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Sep 27 / Carmen Gamlin

Technical Degrees Lead List of Top-Paid Majors for Class of 2013 Grads

Spotlight for Career Services Professionals Spotlight for Recruiting Professionals September 18, 2013

Technical majors-especially those in engineering-head the list of top-paid majors for the Class of 2013, according to NACE’s September 2013 Salary Survey.

Seven engineering majors are among the 10 highest-paid at the bachelor’s-degree level. (See Figure 1.)

At an average starting salary of $96,200, petroleum engineering is far and away the highest-paid major for members of the Class of 2013.

Other engineering majors among the top 10 are computer engineering, ($70,300, second), chemical engineering ($66,900, third), aerospace/aeronautical/astronautical engineering ($63,900, fifth), mechanical engineering ($63,900, fifth), electrical/electronics and communications engineering ($62,500, seventh), and engineering technology ($60,900, eighth).

Computer science majors earn starting salaries that average $64,100, the fourth highest-paid among bachelor’s-degree graduates in 2013. Other non-engineering majors whose average starting salaries were among the highest were management information systems/business ($60,300, ninth) and logistics/materials management ($59,500, 10th).

An executive summary of the September 2013 Salary Survey report is available at www.naceweb.org/salary-survey-data/.

NACE’s final report on starting salaries for Class of 2013 college graduates will be available in the January 2014 issue of Salary Survey.

Figure 1: Top-Paid Majors for Class of 2013 Bachelor’s Degree Graduates*

Major Average Starting Salary
Petroleum Engineering $96,200
Computer Engineering $70,300
Chemical Engineering $66,900
Computer Science $64,100
Aerospace/Aeronautical/Astronautical Engineering $63,900
Mechanical Engineering $63,900
Electrical/Electronics and Communications Engineering $62,500
Engineering Technology $60,900
Management Information Systems/Business $60,300
Logistics/Materials Management $59,500

*Source: September 2013 Salary Survey, National Association of Colleges & Employers

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