The Top Paying Majors in STEM!
March 02, 2012
By Soyini Taylor
Studying what you love is great, but it definitely doesn’t hurt to know that that you’ll be earning big bucks once you enter the job market, right? It’s almost like validation from society that you’ve chosen the “right” path. STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) majors provide a very specialized and skilled workforce upon graduation, but the pay is definitely not the same across the board for each.
For the purpose of this article, I used the Georgetown University report, “What’s it Worth?: The Economic Value of College Majors” to the create the top 20 list below. There are some majors that were included, but not ranked. This is because they are double majors and/or could be considered an art or a science (in particular Economics and Architecture) depending on the school, which disqualified them from being ranked. Also note that I only included salaries $60,000 and up. So now to the tape.
1. Petroleum Engineering Median Earnings: $120,000
First things first, a big congratulations to those in petroleum engineering! Petroleum Engineers have the opportunity to earn a median wage of $120,000 upon graduating college. Well, a big congrats to those doing any type of engineering; engineering majors and derivatives of take most of the top spots on the list. Not a shabby showing by the Engineers of the world.
2. Pharmacy Pharmaceutical Sciences and Administration Median Earnings: $105,000
Professionals in this field have an employment rate of 98% percent. 48% of those surveyed had a graduate degree, but it seemed that having a graduated degree only raised their earnings about 13% on average.
Check out the list and see where your major places. Not surprisingly, majors tied to natural resources, steel, etc., do quite well salary-wise and have been doing well for quite some time. The information below may motivate you to pursue a master’s degree in your chosen field, or may encourage you to take on another specialization.
Carnevale, Anthony P., Jeff Strohl and Michelle Melton. "What's it Worth: The Economic Value of College Majors." 24 May 2011. Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. 16 January 2012 <http://www9.georgetown.edu/grad/gppi/hpi/cew/pdfs/whatsitworth-complete.pdf>.
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About the Author
Currently, Soyini is working as a Database Engineer for a food delivery company in China. She will start graduate school this fall (2012) to study Computer Science, Information Technology and all that goes with them.