These Are the 4 Highest Paying Majors Where New Grads Can Earn a $100,000 Salary

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High school students planning for their future may be concerned about entering an uncertain job market in the next four to six years. College students still choosing a major may also worry about their prospects, especially if the U.S. enters a recession this year or in 2024, as many experts predict.

A new report from the HEA Group analyzed more than 36,000 undergraduate college programs to find the most lucrative fields. While graduates in most fields can’t expect to earn six figures right out of college — or even after four years in the workforce — there are some industries where this is quite possible.

However, some of the highest paying fields also have the fewest jobs available for new graduates. For instance, Operations Research, a major that could lead to a job as an analyst for a major company looking to reduce costs and improve efficiency, has just 104,200 jobs available right now, according to the latest data from the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Statistics. Operations research analysts, however, can expect to earn more than $112,000 per year just a few years after graduation.

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What are the top degrees if you’re looking to earn more than $100,000 after college, and how many jobs are available in these careers?

Operations Research

  • Early-career salary: $112,00
  • Jobs available: 104,200
  • Growth rate: 23%

Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering

  • Early-career salary: $109,000
  • Jobs available: 7,600
  • Growth rate: 4%

Computer Science

  • Early-career salary: $105,000
  • Jobs available: 33,500
  • Growth rate: 21%

Marine Transportation

  • Early-career salary: $104,000
  • Jobs available: 75,400
  • Growth rate: 1%

Computer Engineering

  • Early-career salary: $99,000
  • Jobs available: 76,900
  • Growth rate: 5%

Veterinary Medicine

  • Early-career salary: $97,500
  • Jobs available: 86,300
  • Growth rate: 19%

Petroleum Engineering

  • Early-career salary: $97,000
  • Jobs available: 86,300
  • Growth rate: 19%

Systems Engineering

  • Early-career salary: $95,000
  • Jobs available: 301,000
  • Growth rate: 10%

Pharmaceutical Science

  • Early-career salary: $94,000
  • Jobs available: 119,200
  • Growth rate: 17%

Electrical, Electronics and Communications Engineering

  • Early-career salary: $92,000
  • Jobs available: 303,800
  • Growth rate: 3%

There’s more good news, too. Many of these jobs, including Operations Research, are in fields that are growing faster than the national average, based on the latest BLS data.

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