As hiring demand continues to rise, the average starting salary for the college Class of 2022 is projected to be more than $50,000.
However, current college students can earn more than twice that after they graduate depending on the college and area of concentration.
A study based on data from the U.S. Department of Education looks at the bachelor’s degrees from public universities that pay an annual salary of at least $100,000 three years after completion and have a 100% employment rate.
A bachelor’s from the University of Washington’s Seattle campus in the field of allied health diagnostic, intervention and treatment has the highest earning potential.
All graduates have a job within two years of graduating and earn a median salary of $131,592 the following year, according to the study, by ProWritingAid.
In the second spot is marine transportation at Northwestern Michigan College, which can earn graduates $112,111 three years out of school.
Next are bachelor’s degrees in registered nursing, nursing administration, nursing research and clinical nursing from California State University’s Monterey Bay and Stanislaus campuses. Those alumni earn a median salary of $110,683 and $104,737, respectively.
Rounding out the top five, graduates of California State’s Maritime Academy, which offers a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering-related technologies, earn $102,821 three years after completion.
Overall, there were 140 degrees with a median annual salary of more than $100,000 within three years of graduation — of those, 93 were from private colleges and 47 were from public institutions, ProWritingAid found.
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Coming out of the pandemic, it’s more important than ever for students and families to find colleges that offer the best value.
Of course, public schools also cost significantly less.
Tuition and fees plus room and board for in-state students at four-year public colleges averaged $27,330 in the 2021-22 school year; for out-of-state students, it was $44,150, according to the College Board.
In comparison, students at four-year private colleges pay $55,800 on average, although when other expenses are factored in, the total tab can be more than $70,000 a year.
Regardless of the school, how much you make comes down to your field of study and eventual occupation.
These days, the top 10 best-paying majors are all related to engineering — with the exception of computer science, according to the New York Federal Reserve’s study of salaries for college graduates.
Computer science majors are likely to be the highest paid just out of college, earning $75,900 on average, followed by engineering graduates, according to a separate report from the National Association of Colleges and Employers.
This year, employers projected starting salaries will increase 5.4% for math and sciences majors and decrease 14.8% for humanities majors, NACE found.