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  • Class of 2018’s Overall Starting Salary Remains Flat

    July 15, 2019 | By NACE Staff

    Compensation
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    TAGS: compensation, salaries, surveys, spotlight

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    The final overall average starting salary for the Class of 2018 stands at $50,944. While this final salary is trending in the right direction, it is less than 1 percent higher than the final average salary for the Class of 2017 ($50,516), according to results of NACE’s Summer 2019 Salary Survey report.

    The report—which provides actual starting salaries (not projections) for the college Class of 2018, and serves as the final salary report for this class—offers further illustration of the sluggish growth in overall salaries for college graduates in recent years as starting salaries are up just 1.4 percent from the Class of 2015’s final average salary ($50,219).

    For the last three years, computer science graduates have been the top earners among all disciplines. While this remains true for the Class of 2018, the overall average starting salary for these graduates ($71,411) is down 1.7 percent from the average for the Class of 2017 ($72,677).

    Meanwhile, the average starting salary for Class of 2018 engineering graduates—$66,638—has bumped up 1.7 percent from $65,539 for the Class of 2017.

    Rounding out the STEM disciplines, mathematics and statistics majors once again have average starting salaries that exceed $60,000. The Class of 2018’s average of $61,709 is 1.8 percent higher than that for the Class of 2017 ($60,631).

    The overall average for Class of 2018 business graduates remains flat. At $52,040, it is down 0.8 percent from the Class of 2017’s average ($52,456) and nearly identical to the overall average salary for Class of 2016 business graduates ($52,047).

    At $52,076, the average starting salary for Class of 2018 health sciences graduates is down 3.3 percent.

    On the other hand, the overall average for Class of 2018 social sciences graduates—$46,797—has moved up just 0.2 percent from the average salary for these graduates from the Class of 2017 ($46,707).

    The Data were gathered from Class of 2018 graduates through December 31, 2018, and reported to NACE through May 31, 2019. The salary data were reported to NACE through its national Class of 2018 First-Destination Survey by approximately 350 colleges and universities nationwide, and represent data for almost 693,500 graduates at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree levels. The analysis provided here focuses on the data provided for more than 82,850 bachelor’s degree graduates. The Summer 2019 Salary Survey report is available to members in MyNACE. An executive summary report is available at http://www.naceweb.org/research/reports/.

    Figure 1: Starting Salaries by Discipline for Class of 2018 Bachelor’s Degree Graduates

    Broad Category Average Salary
    Computer science $71,411
    Engineering $66,638
    Math and statistics $61,709
    Health sciences $52,076
    Business $52,040
    Social sciences $46,797
    Source: Summer 2019 Salary Survey, National Association of Colleges and Employers