COLLEGE SAVINGS 101

Savingforcollege.com

A worthy investment? America’s highest paying jobs under the microscope.
http://www.savingforcollege.com/articles/a-worthy-investment-america-s-highest-paying-jobs-under-the-microscope-1073

Posted: 2017-06-19

by Jennifer McDermott, Consumer Advocate, finder.com

When considering which major to study in college, looking at the highest paying professions seems like a great start, right? We've taken it one step further by calculating the return on investment for America's Top 20 Highest Paying Jobs in 2017, based on LinkedIn's salary data, after paying off a student loan for a decade. We've also factored in income tax to paint a more realistic picture. Here is the verdict...

Let's take a closer look

The college costs were calculated using a conservative estimate based on about 20 different colleges (public and private) across America. We first checked if the job required an under-graduate or graduate degree, then averaged the fees across the colleges. The occupations and median base salaries were captured from LinkedIn's data, and our analysis used an average loan rate of 3.76% for an undergraduate degree, and 4.53% for a graduate degree. However, as this was based on the average rates, gaining even better value from your degree with a cheaper student loan is definitely possible by taking some time to shop around for the best deal. Our study also assumes the student borrowed to cover the entire cost of their education.

After considering the long-term investment, the top nine professions stayed in the same position on the list. It turns out that medical matters of the heart translate into big money. Cardiologists are LinkedIn's top earners in 2017, with a median base salary of $356,000 per year. Even after paying down that $243,000 loan plus interest, projected earnings tip the salary scale at over $2.08 million dollars.

In fact, the following top professions all fell within the medical field. Radiologists came in at a close second, followed by Anesthesiologists, Surgeons, Medical Directors, Pathologists, Physicians (General), Hospitalists, and Psychiatrists.

RELATED: The biggest college planning mistake parents make

Movement on the list

Our analysis shows that there is no need to immediately dismiss a major simply because, on paper, it earns a lower salary when compared to another. It's important to consider the long-term picture, even if considering jobs that fall outside of this list. For example, even though a Global Marketing Director ranked 19th out of the Top 20, it climbed the rails five places to 14th when the 10-year picture was considered.

Several jobs also fell in value when return on investment was factored in. Dentists had the most dramatic drop, falling a whopping six places. Other jobs losing their place were Senior Corporate Counsels, Staff Software Engineers, Directors of Engineering, Patent Attorneys, and Anesthetists.

finder.com's breakdown of the top 20 highest paying careers 2017:

Student loan costs vs potential earnings

Table by finder.com

How to choose

Whichever way you look at it, each of the Top 20 jobs will earn you a great salary, even if some do outweigh others. While considering return on investment is beneficial to determine which majors really fare best value, there are extra ways to decide what to study if you're still on the fence.

First and foremost, trust your gut when making your decision. This will not only ensure that you study what you love (and likely, what you're good at), but it may actually save you money. Choosing a major that you have little to no interest in could ultimately mean not graduating on time, or dropping out altogether due to a prolonged, disinterested college experience.

Another great way to narrow down your options is by conducting your research. Look into the requirements of potential majors, speak to academics, and if you can, pick the brains of people who have previously studied the same or a similar major. Practical experience can also help to gain real-world insight into your future profession. Look into internships and volunteer work to not only build up your CV, but also gain hands-on experience. With so many options available, what are you waiting for? The world is your oyster.

RELATED: How to determine the ROI on a college education


Jennifer McDermott is Consumer Advocate at personal finance comparison website finder.com. With more than 12 years' experience under her belt, having analyzed consumer trends in the travel and lifestyle industries, Jennifer loves to uncover interesting issues and trends to help Americans find better.

When considering which major to study in college, looking at the highest paying professions seems like a great start, right? We've taken it one step further by calculating the return on investment for America's Top 20 Highest Paying Jobs in 2017, based on LinkedIn's salary data, after paying off a student loan for a decade. We've also factored in income tax to paint a more realistic picture. Here is the verdict...

Let's take a closer look

The college costs were calculated using a conservative estimate based on about 20 different colleges (public and private) across America. We first checked if the job required an under-graduate or graduate degree, then averaged the fees across the colleges. The occupations and median base salaries were captured from LinkedIn's data, and our analysis used an average loan rate of 3.76% for an undergraduate degree, and 4.53% for a graduate degree. However, as this was based on the average rates, gaining even better value from your degree with a cheaper student loan is definitely possible by taking some time to shop around for the best deal. Our study also assumes the student borrowed to cover the entire cost of their education.

After considering the long-term investment, the top nine professions stayed in the same position on the list. It turns out that medical matters of the heart translate into big money. Cardiologists are LinkedIn's top earners in 2017, with a median base salary of $356,000 per year. Even after paying down that $243,000 loan plus interest, projected earnings tip the salary scale at over $2.08 million dollars.

In fact, the following top professions all fell within the medical field. Radiologists came in at a close second, followed by Anesthesiologists, Surgeons, Medical Directors, Pathologists, Physicians (General), Hospitalists, and Psychiatrists.

RELATED: The biggest college planning mistake parents make

Movement on the list

Our analysis shows that there is no need to immediately dismiss a major simply because, on paper, it earns a lower salary when compared to another. It's important to consider the long-term picture, even if considering jobs that fall outside of this list. For example, even though a Global Marketing Director ranked 19th out of the Top 20, it climbed the rails five places to 14th when the 10-year picture was considered.

Several jobs also fell in value when return on investment was factored in. Dentists had the most dramatic drop, falling a whopping six places. Other jobs losing their place were Senior Corporate Counsels, Staff Software Engineers, Directors of Engineering, Patent Attorneys, and Anesthetists.

finder.com's breakdown of the top 20 highest paying careers 2017:

Student loan costs vs potential earnings

Table by finder.com

How to choose

Whichever way you look at it, each of the Top 20 jobs will earn you a great salary, even if some do outweigh others. While considering return on investment is beneficial to determine which majors really fare best value, there are extra ways to decide what to study if you're still on the fence.

First and foremost, trust your gut when making your decision. This will not only ensure that you study what you love (and likely, what you're good at), but it may actually save you money. Choosing a major that you have little to no interest in could ultimately mean not graduating on time, or dropping out altogether due to a prolonged, disinterested college experience.

Another great way to narrow down your options is by conducting your research. Look into the requirements of potential majors, speak to academics, and if you can, pick the brains of people who have previously studied the same or a similar major. Practical experience can also help to gain real-world insight into your future profession. Look into internships and volunteer work to not only build up your CV, but also gain hands-on experience. With so many options available, what are you waiting for? The world is your oyster.

RELATED: How to determine the ROI on a college education


Jennifer McDermott is Consumer Advocate at personal finance comparison website finder.com. With more than 12 years' experience under her belt, having analyzed consumer trends in the travel and lifestyle industries, Jennifer loves to uncover interesting issues and trends to help Americans find better.

 

Reset email successfully sent.
Please check your inbox.

Close
page loadtime mark

Advertisement


close