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Top 5 Highest-Paying Jobs Right Out of College

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Going to college and getting a degree is quite the accomplishment. If you earn one of those degrees that isn’t uber valuable in the workforce, though, you may be unpleasantly shocked by the measly income you’ll earn right off the bat. Aim for getting an education that will land you a job in a field that offers some of the highest salaries around for college grads.

5 Physics Experts

Having a clear knowledge and understanding of the world and the laws of gravity can put you at the top of your game right after graduation. With a degree in physics, you can work in high schools, universities, research labs, museums, virtually any branch of the military and government systems worldwide. You’ll be greatly rewarded for your smarts, too. The average base salary for physics grads is almost $50,000 a year. Consider the job security as well; physics isn’t going to go away anytime soon.

4 Construction and Labor

Construction and labor jobs have high starting pay if you land the right gig. With an undergraduate degree in the field, you could land a position as a building inspector, project manager or inspection supervisor, to name a few. The reward? An average starting salary of more than $51,000, Forbes reports—and the right to walk around in a hard hat all day.

3 Systems Engineer

If you’re handy with the computer, you could bring in big money as soon as you get that diploma in your hand. A bachelor’s degree in hardware, computer or electrical engineering can earn you close to $80,000 a year if you land yourself a job as a systems engineer. Get your diploma and you can work anywhere in the world running information systems departments, configuring networks and improving the technical efficiency of assembly lines in warehouses. Be prepared to be on call quite a bit; computers need to run 24/7, after all.

2 Software Developer

With the endless varieties of software out there, you would think that the field is drying up. But new programs are always popping up to streamline life and make work more efficient. Some developers even get to play all day by designing video games. That’s where you come in with your shiny new computer science, math or engineering degree. Typically, software developers start out earning about $84,000 a year. You’ll need those mega bucks to help you focus on the endless hours of reading codes.

1 Investment Banker

Most everyone dreams of having a six-figure salary some day, but probably not straight out of college. Unless you’re an investment banker with a degree in math, business or finance. The average first-year salary is more than $110,000, according to Of course, you’ll be working incredibly long hours and under extreme amounts of pressure. Life might be a little less strenuous, however, with those extra zeros on your paystub.
Melodie Anne Coffman

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