The Best College Careers Out There for Graduates



If you’re looking for the best college careers when you graduate, we can help! These are the best college careers in the world.

Sure, getting a degree can be tough. There’s classes, assignments, exams, and other major responsibilities. But earning your degree is just the beginning. Whether you’re going to study, are studying now, or recently graduated, it’s wise to think about what college careers are out there. Thinking about it ahead of time can help you prepare for the inevitable job search.


Remember, once you graduate, you need to work! And hopefully, it will be in the field you chose to study. That said, there are endless careers out there for recent graduates to pursue. You might be wondering which are the most popular? The highest paid? Where do you look? And can you work abroad? We’re going to tackle all of these questions and help you figure out what the best careers for college graduates are.



The Highest Paying Careers for College Grads

There are certain career fields that tend to earn college graduates higher salaries than others. And it looks like in the fast-paced progressive world that we live in today, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields are not only highly popular but also some of the highest paid. Let’s take a look at some of the major careers for college grads, separated by popular career fields.



Engineering Careers

The field of engineering is wide and multi-faceted. You can work with companies and government agencies with technical issues, mechanical and electrical development, or project management. Engineering can range from industrial and construction industries to advancing the medical industry.


Engineering is very hands-on, and mathematics is an essential skill. While an undergraduate degree in engineering is a foundation, many graduates will go on to earn graduate degrees that provide them with the specialized skills needed to get the top positions. Engineering has lots of specialization options, such as: Electrical and Electronics, Aeronautics, Industrial, Mechanical, Agricultural, Environmental or Geological, Health and Safety, and Biomedical.



Source: Pixabay



If you’re curious as to the career outlook of engineering jobs, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that civil engineering will grow 8% from 2014 to 2024, and biomedical engineering careers will jump 23% during the same time frame.


Although there are lots of engineering careers out there, here are the top three highest paying.



1. Petroleum Engineering


Job Description:


Designing methods and equipment for extracting oil and gas located in reservoirs under the Earth’s surface. The job involves the research and development of drilling equipments, plans, and other operations.


Average Salary:


$102,300 to $176,300


Degree Required:


Bachelor’s in petroleum engineering.





2. Nuclear Engineering


Job Description:


Researching and developing methods to create the processes, instruments, and systems used in harnessing nuclear energy and benefiting from nuclear radiation. Nuclear engineers work in all kinds of sectors, including: the medical field, industrial fields, or waste control and disposal systems.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


Master’s in nuclear engineering.





3. Chemical Engineering


Job Description:


Using chemistry, biology, physics, and math to analyse problems and come up with solutions for the production of a variety of goods, such as medicine, food, clothing, and fuel. Most of the job involves research but it also includes design and development.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


Bachelor’s, master’s or PhD in chemical engineering.





Computer Science Careers

Similar to engineering, there are a variety of career options in the computer science field. Computer science jobs focus more on the scientific aspects of technology. Computer science degrees delve into the theory behind computer programs and applications, learning both how and why these systems work.



Source: Pixabay



Students in computer science degrees can specialize in different areas which will give them specific skills that are essential to specific careers. Major focus areas are: Data structures and analysis, Computer systems and architecture, In-depth training in a variety of software applications, Networking, and Software engineering, analysis, and design.


The career outlook for computer science shows an increasing demand. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a job growth of 17% for software developers by 2024, and web developers will see a 27% increase in this same timeframe. Here are the top three highest paying computer careers.



1. Principal Software Engineer


Job Description:


Software engineers work on the software development life cycle, from the initial research and study of requirements to the final design and testing of a program. It involves taking a systematic and scientific approach to the development of software.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


Master’s in software engineering, computer science, or mathematics.





2. Senior Software Architect


Job Description:


Developing new programs and software for technologically based companies. Making high-level design choices and creating technical standards, including software coding standards, tools, and platforms.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


Master’s in software engineering, computer science, math, or information systems.





3. Information Technology Director


Job Description:


Managing and directing IT operations for companies and providing leadership to IT departments. It involves overseeing and evaluating all technology operations according to the company’s goals.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


Master’s in computer science or information science.





Mathematics Careers

Math is a highly demanded skill that can actually apply to almost all jobs in one way or another. But when it comes to serious mathematics, graduates tend to start careers in business, research, education, meteorology, or the financial world.


Like the other fields, math degrees also offer specialization areas, including: Mathematics Education, Applied and Computational Mathematics, Statistics, Mathematical Biology, Operations Research, and Economics.


The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that there will be a 21% occupational increase by 2024 for mathematicians. Actuaries and statisticians will see 18% and 34% growth. Let’s look at the top three highest paying mathematician careers.



Source: Pexels



Director of Analytics


Job Description:


Supervising a corporate team and identifying patterns in data to find risks and opportunities for the company’s clients. It involves overseeing all activities and making sure they’re aligned with the company’s vision and objectives.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


A master’s or PhD in Data Science, Computer Science, Information Technology, Economics, Statistics, Information Systems, Applied Math, or Business Administration.





Operations Research Manager


Job Description:


Managing a team of operations research analysts, with a goal of collecting and analyzing data to evaluate operational problems and solve them. Interpreting, tracking, and analyzing key metrics to help a company improve its performance.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


Not all schools offer Operations Management as a degree, so many will have a degree in engineering, computer science, analytics, or mathematics.





Senior Statistician


Job Description:


Gathering statistics and providing statistical analysis for employers. Employers can be corporations, government offices, political campaigns, universities, and other organizations.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


A bachelor’s degree in statistics, applied math, computer science or a related field is the minimum. But a master’s or a PhD in applied statistics or math is a preferred qualification among top companies.





Most Popular Jobs for College Grads

Sure, finding the highest paying careers straight out of college is one way to go. But what if you wanted to know what the most popular ones are? The kinds of jobs that are in high demand and the ones that you will be more likely to land as a fresh graduate.


Let’s take a look at some of the more popular jobs that many recent grads tend to land after graduation. The following are the top three most popular jobs among 2018 college grads.



Assistant Media Planner


Job Description:


Working in the advertising industry, assisting the senior media planner to put ads in the right place at the right time, and reaching the desired audience for the least amount of money. New York City was listed No. 1 on LinkedIn’s Top U.S. cities hiring new grads.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


A bachelor’s in business, math, or marketing are the most common.





Graphic Designer


Job Description:


Creating visual concepts, mostly on a computer, to communicate ideas to consumers. It involves developing the overall layout and production design for advertisements, brochures, magazines, and corporate reports. Graphic design is the most in-demand design job right now, with a 234% growth in 2017.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design.





Administrative Assistant


Job Description:


Most of the responsibilities revolve around managing and distributing information in an office. This involves answering phones, taking memos, creating and maintaining files. It can also involve sending and receiving correspondence, greeting clients and customers, and other customer service duties.


Average Salary:




Degree Required:


No specific degree is required, although psychology, business, and communications are definitely helpful majors in this type of job.





Best Places to Look

Aside from speaking with a career counselor at your university, you have the internet to help you search for a job once you graduate. And better yet, before you graduate is even better. As jobs can be quite competitive, getting a head start isn’t a bad idea. Here are some of the most promising sites for finding entry-level jobs.





Once you search for the job, you can click on “Experience Level” and choose “entry-level.” This site also has a useful salary tool to see the average salaries for your target field and location.


This site includes tons of companies looking for recent college graduates, as well as internship listings for those who haven’t yet decided on a permanent career route.


The site has a list of the top entry-level employers for the current year based on how many openings there are and offers direct links to the employer sites.


This site connects college grads with employers looking to hire for entry-level jobs. They also offer a free professional resume critique for registered users.



Finding Work Abroad After Graduation

Sometimes, the only thing you want to do after graduation is escape and find some freedom after a long period of hard work! It’s not always feasible, being that you need to earn some money and pay off your degree. So a way to find a happy medium would be to find a job abroad. Get your fix on leaving the country as well as find a real job.



Popular Places to Find Some Work Abroad

According to GoAbroad, the most popular places to find work after graduation are: Australia, Ireland, France, New Zealand, Honduras, Switzerland, and South Korea. We’ll give you a glimpse into a few.





Australia is one of the most desired destinations for those who have or are studying tourism and administration. The country is full of opportunities to use those skills as it is a top tourist destination in the world.



Source: Pexels





France is a hot spot for graduates who studied marketing, law, or fashion, to name a few. Their economy is doing well and there are ample amounts of jobs ready to be taken. But keep in mind, speaking French is a must.



New Zealand


If you’re interested in agriculture or horticulture, New Zealand is a wonderful place to gain some experience while working in the field, literally! Working in the lush green fields of this country sounds like a great entry-level job, if you ask us.



Popular Jobs Abroad

If you’re wondering what the most popular jobs are that college grads look for abroad, we’re about to fill you in. According to GoOverseas, the most popular jobs abroad for recent grads are: teaching, medical work, tech, hospitality, agriculture, childcare, communications, business administration, and freelance jobs. We’ll go through a few of these.



English Language Teacher


Teaching English is probably the most popular route when working abroad after graduation. English teaching jobs are easy to find and they pay pretty well. You can find work in any country in which English isn’t the official language, and that’s most of the world!



Source: Pexels





This is a wide term for all the jobs that involve communication. It includes digital and social media, writing, marketing, and graphic design. For instance, businesses all over the globe need digital content creators. If you’re looking for work in a non-English speaking country, your language level can give you an advantage.



Business Administration


Considering business is one of the most popular degrees, it may come as no surprise that places all over the world are looking for recent business major grads. Finding an entry-level job in finance, human resources, or marketing can be relatively easy in cities like London, Shanghai, or Singapore.



How to Get Started

For those who are still in the early stages, looking for a degree to study, you have so many options! A good option for those who want to avoid the high cost of traditional degrees, or flexibility to study is to enroll at an online university such as University of the People. We offer online tuition-free degrees in Business Administration, Health Science, Computer Science, and Education. Just keep in mind that although we are tuition-free, exam fees apply.


So, did any of those computer science or business careers interest you? Check out some awesome facts about earning a masters in software engineering. And if you want to know more about the basics of computer science, see our tips on what it’s about and how to get started in that field.