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  • STEM Majors Projected to Earn Top Salaries From Class of 2019

    BETHLEHEM, PA—Bachelor’s degree graduates earning STEM degrees are expected to earn the highest starting salaries from the college Class of 2019, according to results of a new survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE).

    NACE’s Winter 2019 Salary Survey found that graduates with engineering ($69,188), computer science ($67,539), and math and sciences degrees ($62,177) are once again projected to be the top-paid graduates. (See Figure 1.)

    Also coming in near the top of the list are business ($57,657) and social sciences ($57,310) majors.

    The news is generally positive for Class of 2019 graduates overall at this early juncture in the salary reporting cycle. All reported disciplines are expected to see gains—albeit relatively small ones—except one and that loss is just -0.1 percent.

    Agriculture and natural resources majors are projected to see the greatest gain in starting salary at 4.1 percent. With an expected increase of 4.0 percent, engineering majors follow closely behind, while the average salary for computer science majors is anticipated to be 2.3 percent more than their counterparts from the Class of 2018.

    Figure 1: Average Salary by Discipline, Bachelor’s Degrees

    Broad Category 2019 Salary Projection 2018 Salary Projection Percent Change
    Engineering $69,188 $66,521 4.0%
    Computer Science $67,539 $66,005 2.3%
    Math & Sciences $62,177 $61,867 0.5%
    Business $57,657 $56,720 1.7%
    Social Sciences $57,310 $56,689 1.1%
    Humanities $56,651 $56,688 -0.1%
    Agriculture & Natural Resources $55,750 $53,565 4.1%
    Communications $52,056 $51,448 1.2%
    Source: Winter 2019 Salary Survey, National Association of Colleges and Employers

    About Salary Survey: The Winter 2019 Salary Survey contains annual salary projections for Class of 2019 college graduates. The figures reported are for base salaries only and do not include bonuses, commissions, fringe benefits, or overtime rates. The data contained in NACE's Winter 2018 Salary Survey were collected from August 1, 2018, through December 3, 2018. A total of 186 surveys were returned for a 20 percent response rate. An executive summary of the Winter 2019 Salary Survey report is available on the NACE website.  

    About NACE: Since 1956, the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) has been the leading source of information about the employment of college graduates. For more information, visit NACE maintains a virtual press room for the media.