Salary should not be the sole determining factor in career selection but let’s face it: there are bills to pay and college loans will soon become due. So it does help to know what type of entry level jobs actually pay the most after graduation.
Here are 5 high paying entry level jobs:
1. Petroleum Engineer
Petroleum Engineers are still in high demand, in spite of the recent slump in oil prices, which makes the role that much more critical in tapping into available reserves. Petroleum engineers design and develop methods for extracting oil and gas from deposits below the Earth’s surface. Petroleum engineers also find new ways to extract oil and gas from older wells. Average entry level starting salary is $85,000 to a whopping $105,000.
2. Software Development Engineer
Think Google, Apple, Amazon and Microsoft. SDEs are in high demand. SDEs are the creative minds behind complex computer systems. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks. Average entry level salary is $63,000 to $85,000, with some entry level job offers topping six figures.
3. Chemical Engineer
Chemical Engineering is hot and it has salaries to match. Chemical engineers apply the principles of chemistry, biology, physics, and mathematics to solve problems that involve the production or use of chemicals, fuel, drugs, food, and many other products. Entry level salary is $65,000 to $77,000.
4. Management Consultant
If you think that management consulting roles are only for experienced professionals, you could be missing out. Large management consulting firms hire from a variety of majors. You won’t be actually directly consulting to management, but you will be supporting higher level consultants by doing research analysis, cost analysis and performance evaluations. Average entry level salary is $55,000 to $75,000, often with additional bonuses tied to performance.
5. Electrical Engineer
What, another engineering job? Yep. Engineers in general out earn most other majors. Electrical engineers design, develop, test, and supervise the manufacturing of electrical equipment, such as electric motors, radar and navigation systems, communications systems, or power generation equipment. Entry level salary is $62,000 to $72,000.
These are some of the highest paying entry level jobs available. But remember, just because they are the best paying entry level jobs doesn’t always mean they are the best. Make sure your chosen career matches with your aptitudes, interests, personality and values.
There are many factors that go into the actual salaries for top paying entry level jobs: the college where you earned your degree, your ranking against your peers, internship experience, industry and location of the job. And don’t forget great negotiating skills! To learn more about entry level jobs for these and other careers, go to CollegeGrad.com and search using “Entry Level” or “Internship” checked when you search.