Average College Graduate Salary

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Average College Graduate Salary
Jennifer Lockman

What are the main things to consider when deciding upon a college major? Sooner or later, most students understand average starting salary is one of the highest priorities. However, many recent grads have fallacies in that regard. In this article, we’ll try to dispel some common myths about the average salary for college graduates.

College Graduate Salary Expectation Vs Reality

The grads anticipate employment with a good starting salary. That’s perfectly understandable because students often have loans that are collecting interest. Also, the cost of living grows every day. It’s not surprising that after investing in education, recent graduates expect to earn decent wages.

The average salary for college graduate that covers necessities is not enough. A good employer has to provide a worker with stock options, retirement planning, and other benefits and perks. On the other hand, grads should be ready to experience quite a long and difficult job search. To be open-minded about the start of a career is always a good idea. It’s OK to consider work outside the chosen specialty in the interim.

The next thing to prepare for is remote hiring and working. Now with the spread of coronavirus, remote work became common. Anyway, nobody wants to get stuck with an average entry-level salary. Fresh and ambitious grads always await career-advancement opportunities.

What Is The Average Salary Of A College Graduate

What is a good starting salary? Opinions vary, but the truth is not every expectation comes true. That is how we go from aspirations to real numbers. Consider how to minimize the long-term impact on future pay by knowing your market value.

According to The NACE, the average starting salary out of college comes to $50,000. The total amount of the wage can change depending on the major and academic degree. The grads with degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics get the highest initial earnings. Others probably will need to know how to save money early in their careers.

The good news is college grad salaries are higher compared to wages for high school graduates. The SSA says men with bachelor’s diplomas earn $900,000 more. As for the women, wage differentials stand at $630,000. Eventually, all the learning efforts are worth it.

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Highest Paying Majors

It’s not a secret that salaries differ depending on the area of expertise. How does the money divide when it goes about majors? We compared average salary by major and entered data in the table below.

High-paying majors
Approximate income level

Engineering

$69,000

Computer technology

$68,000

Mathematical science

$62,000

Business & communications

$58,000

Sociology

$57,000

Humanities

$56,500


As for the average salary by degree, everything is easy. The higher your degree is the better salary you can expect. The next question that comes to mind is what recent graduates with no work experience can count on. Some majors guarantee a high salary even at the beginning of a career. This claim relates to several engineering branches (petroleum, metallurgical, welding, and nuclear technologies), OR in management, and computer sciences.

The average income of a college graduate can be increased regardless of the field. Therefore ambitious grads update their resumes and make them more competitive for a particular position. Presentation of relevant experiences and skills helps to negotiate a higher starting salary. Make sure that important keywords are highlighted, and grammar is correct. If you feel like you do poorly in it, take advantage of writing services that will make your resume shine.

Lowest Paying College Majors

Not all majors promise high wages, but a salary increase is possible in these fields too. Here are majors that pay the least and an average income of a college graduate employed I that sectors.

Low-paying majors
Approximate income level

Drama and Theater

$45,000

Fine arts

$48,000

Music

$48,000

Art education

$46,000

Preschool education

$41,000

Studio arts

$41,000

College graduates salaries are the object of concern for many recent grads. But at any rate, young specialists can search for better opportunities in the chosen field and find ways to increase career mobility. Pursuing more training can be an option to maximize the chances for a higher salary.

Compensation Package: Things To Consider

A college graduate starting salary is not everything to think about while seeking employment. Most employees agree it’s preferable when a steady paycheck combines with decent benefits. The offered wage for the entry-level position may be lower than anticipated. So it’s wise to consider all perks before taking a job offer.

Besides entry level wages, grads should contemplate the total compensation package provided by employers. It could happen that commencing rate of salary is not big, but health benefits and extra paid-vacation time are attractive. After all, earning potential in the same company grows with time, and the compensation package remains. To balance below-average pay, the business owner can suggest workers career-advancement opportunities, assistance programs for education, health-care coverage, etc.

It’s pleasant and profitable when employers bear the costs for relocation, provide with paid vacations and sick leaves. Sponsoring your development as a professional, severance pay, flexible schedule, and shorter vesting period are also among the things to negotiate for with the new bosses. As you can see, there are some other ways to get value from the company except salary.

Conclusion

New graduates face many challenges entering the workforce. An average salary out of college is one of the things causing distress. Being informed about your market value as a specialist can bring relief. With that knowledge, one can keep options open and take extra steps to minimize the long-term impact on future earnings.

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