30 Highest Paying College Majors

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Staff Writer


30. Mathematics 
Starting Salary: $50,000
Mid-Career Salary: $90,000

For the student who wonders how they will ever use math in real life, the student studying in the mathematic degree program can answer that question! They use it in application math situations such as construction. The mathematics major must love computation math and equations. Math is used to solve problems and provides numerical analysis. They work in abstract thinking and concepts to solve real life problems. Because math is a subject that is hated by many, mathematics is one of the highest paying career fields.

29. Information Technology
Starting Salary: $50,500
Mid-Career Salary: $84,500

There is an abundance of computer issues that arise daily, and the information technologist handles them all easily. The information technology major studies computer science, business, and communications. They support businesses and keep them flowing on the information superhighway of the worldwide web. The core subject information taught is computer hardware; however, they are taught to help humans interact with the machines. This is a lucrative field and the pay is above average!

28. Economics
Starting Salary: $51,000
Mid-Career Salary: $97,000

Economists focus on the buying and selling of goods and services. They are financial analysts who study the market trends. They work in a global environment and provide information to consumers and corporations about which factors impact pricing. Economists are excellent mathematicians and are able to make connections in their thinking between abstract and reality. They are often forecasters of the unpredictable, and for this reason they are paid extremely well!

27. Occupational Health
Starting Salary: $51,300
Mid-Career Salary: $80,500

Occupational health careers are often safety specialists. They are found working to make sure that other workers are safe and that there are not harmful practices going on in workplaces to endanger the environment or the general public. They find themselves enforcing government environmental and workplace safety regulations. Environmental protection officers followed this career path. They are known as inspectors and industrial hygienists, and they are paid well for their work!

26. Industrial Technology
Starting Salary: $51,700
Mid-Career Salary: $81,200

Industrial technology is a technical career field where manufacturing processes are analyzed, critiqued, and made better. They help industrial engineers bring their ideas to life. Although this is often only an associates or two-year degree plan, it often is a very high paying career. You will find the industrial technologist working in manufacturing warehouses. This degree plan can be a stepping stone to an advanced degree in industrial engineering.

25. Computer Information Systems 
Starting Salary: $52,000
Mid-Career Salary: $87,500

Computer information systems is a degree in the IT and computer science family. This is a practical application degree program. It requires the use of less math and does not require as many math courses, so if math is not your strong suit, but you still want to work in computer science, this may be the career path for you. It does cover basic programming but it does not solely focus on this aspect. Computer information systems graduates are well paid for the service they provide!

24. Construction Management<
Starting Salary: $52,100
Mid-Career Salary: $89,000

Buildings are not built without help, and the construction management team makes sure that the buildings are erected properly. Most construction managers do not work out of an office far away from the construction site, they are situated on site so that they can see what is happening first hand. Construction managers meet deadlines and respond to emergencies. They use mathematics and geometry daily. For these reasons, they are highly paid!

23. Information Systems
Starting Salary: $52,500
Mid-Career Salary: $87,300

Information systems employees are those who deal with computer database information. Students of the information systems degree plan study sociology and psychology so that they understand the reasons people act the way they do. They are taught about ethical use of the internet. They debug computer systems and make databases specific to client needs. These databases are essential to business owners, and they pay their information systems consultant handsomely.

22. Statistics 
Starting Salary: $53,000
Mid-Career Salary: $98,900

Statisticians are vital to American life. They are important in sports, elections, and opinion polling. Statisticians use computer programs to analyze and weigh information so that they can make calculated predictions. Statisticians are mathematicians who have taken several calculus courses. They are efficient, organized, and keep a handle on tons of data. They are paid well for their work.

21. Applied Mathematics 
Starting Salary: $53,100
Mid-Career Salary: $96,000

Applied mathematicians focus on the application area of their math. Construction work is focused on geometry and exact measurements. Statisticians use applied math to calculate the statistics they analyze. Engineers use mathematics regularly. Each of these career paths are unique to their own mathematical usage, but they are all under the umbrella of applied mathematics.

20. Supply Chain Management 
Starting Salary: $53,400
Mid-Career Salary: $84,000

Supply chain management is a growing field for students to explore. It involves the processes and chain needed to supply all of the goods and services in an economy. Logistics, customer support, and delivery or return of goods is also included in this field. Dispatchers and logistics coordinators send trucks to warehouses in an orderly fashion. Other careers include: strategic sourcing specialists, process improvement specialists, business data analysts, material planners, and enterprise systems analysts. Each of these career opportunities are paid well for their services.

19. Physics
Starting Salary: $53,600
Mid-Career Salary: $101,000

Scientific careers are always well paid, and physicists are no different. Physicists work in research for corporations. They explore ways to reduce carbon emissions. They are also found working in the field of renewable energy. If you prefer to be outside the lab, science communication is another occupation choice for the physicist. Physicists are highly recruited and well paid.

18. Management Information Systems
Starting Salary: $54,000
Mid-Career Salary: $92,000

Management information systems is a people-oriented field. The person using this degree helps people use their technology well. They are different from other information systems fields because they are used to analyze specific strategic activities within an operation. IT security managers and chief technology officers are just two roles that a graduate of the management information system degree can be found working in. These information managers are extremely well paid.

17. Mechanical Engineering Technology
Starting Salary: $54,300
Mid-Career Salary: $84,000

If you enjoy science and building things, mechanical engineering technology just might be the career path for you. Mechanical engineering technicians apply the mechanical engineering principles and build new machinery and products. They work for Fender Guitars, Lockheed Martin, and Rockwell Automation to name just a few. Mechanical engineering technicians work on site where the manufacturing is happening. If you want a high paying job with an associate’s degree, this is the job for you!

16. Civil Engineering 
Starting Salary: $54,500
Mid-Career Salary: $91,000

Civil Engineering is the science of building roads, bridges, buildings, canals, and dams. Civil engineers are best recognized as working for the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers. They are responsible for the dams along the nation’s rivers. Civil engineers are also involved in building airports, sewage treatment systems, and water supply pipelines. Civil engineers are paid about $38 per hour.

15. Nursing 
Starting Salary: $55,400
Mid-Career Salary: $71,000

Nurses help the sickly and are available to assist the doctor in a clinic setting. There are numerous specialties that nurses can explore. Nursing is one of the most promising career paths for those looking for job security. Nurses can work a variety of shifts, in nursing homes, hospitals, clinics, or schools. Nurses are very well paid, and this career path is booming!

14. Electrical Engineering Technology
Starting Salary: $58,000
Mid-Career Salary: $87,500

Electrical engineering technology is similar to electrical engineering, but it is a more specialized and detailed field. Electrical engineering focuses on conceptual design while electrical engineering technology develops electronics, telecommunication systems, control systems, and other embedded electrical technology systems. These are tedious and detailed tasks performed by the electrical engineering technologist, and they are well paid for their abilities and use of their precise skills. If you enjoy tinkering with electronics, this is the career for you.

13. Actuarial Mathematics
Starting Salary: $58,600
Mid-Career Salary: $121,000

Actuarial mathematics analyze the financial consequences of risk. Actuaries are most recognized as working for insurance companies. They also work for hospitals, banks, and employee benefits departments. Actuaries work in a statistical world so it is helpful for the actuarial student to enjoy math. Because they determine if others are a good risk financially, they are well paid for their work!

12. Biomedical Engineering
Starting Salary: $59,100
Mid-Career Salary: $91,800

A complex mix of biology and medicine creates the biomedical engineering field. The concepts that can be used for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes are taught in this major field of study. Biomedical engineering includes making biocompatible prosthetic limbs. It also includes medical devices that are implanted into the body tissue. Biomedical engineers are well paid for the amazing work that they do!

11. Computer Science
Starting Salary: $59,900
Mid-Career Salary: $102,000

Computer science is a catch-all degree plan. It is a practical approach to practical application in building computers. It is a practical application of math and computer programming language. The programming language theory is taught in the courses of this particular degree plan. Computer science covers not only the hardware but the software that make computers useful to humans. Computer scientists are well paid for their work.

10. Software Engineering
Starting Salary: $60,400
Mid-Career Salary: $99,300

If you are interested in computers, software engineering is a lucrative career field. Software engineering has a hand in developing new software and maintaining existing software. They evaluate applications that are running on a variety of operating systems to determine ways to get rid of bugs. These workers were once called software practitioners or software developers. They are paid well for their work as a software engineer.

9. Mechanical Engineering
Starting Salary: $61,000
Mid-Career Salary: $99,700

Mechanical engineers are designers of mechanical and thermal devices. They are researchers and developers of tools and engines. They also find ways to build new machines to get jobs done more efficiently. If a machine breaks or is not working optimally, the mechanical engineer can be found on a worksite. They work both in the private sector and for the government. They are paid approximately $38 per hour.

8. Industrial Engineering
Starting Salary: $61,200
Mid-Career Salary: $94,500

Industrial engineers are interested in streamlining the production processes so that there is no wastefulness in time, worker assignments, machines, and materials. They are constantly looking to make things more efficient on the production line. Industrial engineers are often observers on the production line. If they have identified a problem, they will be in an office searching over data and looking for ways to solve the problem. Industrial engineers are extremely well paid for what they do.

7. Materials Science & Engineering
Starting Salary: $62,700
Mid-Career Salary: $99,600

If you want to make an impact on a global scale, go to college and enroll in a materials science and engineering degree program. You will be paid well to work on the atomic and molecular level. Solar energy production, energy storage, and medicine are just some of the career paths that you can follow as an engineer. You just might find that you have invented the cure for an as yet incurable disease. Materials science engineers must have a love of working in the lab.

6. Aerospace Engineering
Starting Salary: $62,900
Mid-Career Salary: $109,000

If flying is your thing, reach for a career in aerospace engineering! Aerospace engineers work in the development, design, and construction of aircraft and spacecraft. The aeronautical engineering and astronautical engineering are the two branches of the field. If you have the idea for the best way to make it to Mars, this should be your career path. You will be paid well for your work!

5. Electrical Engineering
Starting Salary: $64,200
Mid-Career Salary: $105,000

Electrical engineering is another high paying scientific career. The electrical engineer is involved in working with electricity, electromagnetism, and electronics. They are designers of electrical motors, radar and navigation systems, and other electrical equipment. Not only do they design the equipment, they test it out also. They are very well paid for their high voltage work!

4. Computer Engineering
Starting Salary: $65,200
Mid-Career Salary: $106,200

Computer engineering mixes computer programming and electrical engineering to create computer software and hardware. Computer engineers develop ways to make computers faster and more compact. Computer engineers also find ways to integrate computers into other systems and machines. Making the computers more mobile is a priority. A graduate of a computer engineering program can expect to be paid well for their work.

3. Nuclear Engineering
Starting Salary: $67,600
Mid-Career Salary: $118,000

Nuclear engineers are not rocket scientists, but they are close! They develop processes and instruments to use nuclear energy and radiation. They find medical uses for radioactive materials, such as MRI and CT scanning. Nuclear engineers must enjoy science and be very intelligent. They are very well paid for their efforts.

2. Chemical Engineering
Starting Salary: $68,300
Mid-Career Salary: $116,000

Chemical engineers use a variety of sciences in their everyday work. They incorporate math, physics, chemistry, and biology with their problem solving skills to make large scale products such as fuel, drugs, and chemicals. They design ways of testing their products to ensure that they are safe. Chemical engineers are not often seen out of the industrial plant or lab, and they are extremely well paid.

1. Petroleum Engineering
Starting Salary: $104,000
Mid-Career Salary: $161,000

If you enjoy science and are interested in crude oil or natural gas production, petroleum engineering is the career path for you. Petroleum engineers make almost $63 per hour, and this is a growing field. Petroleum engineers can be found working in a lab or in an office, but they are also outdoors working on site often. If you don’t mind working outside and you are looking for an exciting high paying career, petroleum engineering is the way to go!