Engineering Degrees Found To Be Most Lucrative

March 12, 2010

engineerA new report indicates that eight of the top ten best-paid majors are in engineering.

According to the survey, which was conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, petroleum engineering earns the highest starting salary at the bachelor's degree level at $86,220. The only degrees that made the list which were not in engineering were computer science and information sciences and systems.

"Petroleum engineering has been at the top for the last three years," noted Edwin Koc, director of strategic and foundation research at NACE, who was quoted in The Wall Street Journal.

Marilyn Mackes, NACE's executive director, said in a press release that new graduates with technical degrees tend to be in greater demand, and thus earned higher salaries. "There is more competition for their skills," she noted, "driving up their salary offers. . . . in general, candidates with technical degrees have an advantage in the job market."

The Journal notes that the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that jobs in biomedical engineering will increase 72 percent, from 16,000 in 2008 to 27,600 in 2018. Koc explained that the NACE survey did not record enough offers for jobs in this field to include it in the top ten. But that is likely to change.

In a nod to the trend, Harvard's student publication, The Crimson, reported that the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences will create a new biomedical engineering concentration. Early this year, the University of Houston announced the launching of a new biomedical engineering department--the first added to the school's Cullen College of Engineering in more than 35 years.

Other degrees that made the list include chemical engineering, mining and mineral engineering, computer engineering, electrical/electronics and communication engineering, mechanical engineering, industrial/manufacturing engineering and aerospace/aeronautical/astronautical engineering. The lowest earning major on the list was information sciences and systems with a starting salary of $54,038.

Despite demand for highly-specialized engineering majors, NACE noted that the field is not recession-proof: Only 42 percent of engineering majors found jobs in 2009, compared to 70 percent in 2007.


Compiled by CityTownInfo.com Staff

Career and Education News

Our News Writers and Editors

CityTownInfo Writers and Editors

Follow CityTownInfo.com

Follow Us on Facebook
Follow Us on Twitter
Follow Us on Youtube

Career and College Resources on CityTownInfo

Real-World Career Reports

Career Stories from workers: daily activities, job tips, best/worst job aspects, training, etc.
Daily Career & Education News from our staff. We're an approved Google News provider!

Career References and Original Articles

Resource Center. A starting point for all CityTownInfo career and college resources.
Career Overviews of hundreds of careers: descriptions, salaries, forecasts, schools, more.
Best Careers Not Requiring Degrees: Good pay, job growth, low need for degrees.
Helpful Articles, many in "how-to" format; e.g., "How to Become a Chef".
Infographics covering employment and educational trends.

College Directories and Lists

These lists link to thousands of detailed school profiles.

Colleges by State. Nearly every college and trade school in the country.
Colleges Listed Alphabetically. About 7,000 colleges & trade schools, including online schools.
Colleges by Major City. Browse cities with multiple college options.
Online Colleges. Colleges with online degree programs.
Graduate Schools by State. Colleges offering graduate degree programs.
Graduate Schools by Major City. Find cities with multiple graduate school options.