Top Paying College Majors This Year – Identify a Career

Getting a college education is the best way to set yourself  apart from the competition when pursuing a job. Forbes.com  ranked the top-paying college majors from this year. Researchers used data from Payscale.com’s compensation and the Bureau of Labor Statistics employment projections from 2010-2020. As a result, they identified the fifteen highest-paying college degrees of 2012. Below are the top 5 of the 13 careers identified in the report:

1. Biomedical Engineering

Biomedical engineers specialize in designing medical information systems and health delivery systems. The  Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment to increase 61.7% by 2020. Median starting salary is $53,800, and can get as high as $97,800 as you progress through your career.

2. Biochemistry

Demand for new science, technology, engineering and math talent will increase. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment for biochemists to grow 31% by 2020. Median starting annual salary for biochemists is $41,700 and can get as high as $84,700 as you progress through your career.

3. Computer Science

Developing computer-based solutions involving hardware and software components and integration is  the focus of Computer Science. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment in computer science fields to increase 24.6% by 2020. Median salary is $56,600 and can get as high as $97,900 as you progress through your career.

4. Software Engineering

The design, development, operation and maintenance of software applications is the focus of Software Engineers. The starting median pay for software engineers is $54,900, and the mid-career median pay jumps to $87,800.

5. Environmental Engineering

Environmental engineers incorporate engineering with earth sciences and meteorology. Environmental engineers have a starting median pay of $51,700 ($88,600 by mid-career). The BLS projects jobs to grow 22% by 2020.