Most people that attend college go with the hope of bettering their life and making more money. Part of the decision process in picking a school is the prestige a degree from certain schools bring. So, what college tends to have the highest-paid graduates when they're done with school; and where do schools like the University of Minnesota-Duluth rank nationally? has analyzed the latest wage data for colleges and universities around the country, with a particular focus on the mid-career salary of graduates - when workers are expected to reach their salary peak.

Princeton University leads the pack when it comes to top salaries for graduates among American colleges and universities. The average salary for a Princeton graduate who has earned experience in their field is $137,000, which sets the pace among all American schools for the second year in a row.

The top five schools in mid-career salaries fall as follows:

  1. Princeton University - $137,000
  2. Harvey Mudd College - $135,000
  3. California Institute of Technology (CalTech) - $127,000
  4. United States Naval Academy - $122,000
  5. West Point - $120,000

When it comes to starting wages for those fresh of out college, the list looks a little different. Schools with the highest starting wage are as follows:

  1. West Point - $76,000
  2. United States Naval Academy - $72,200
  3. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - $68,400
  4. California Institute of Technology (CalTech) - $67,400
  5. Harvey Mudd College - $66,800

If you prefer to attend college locally, here are some of the region's schools that made the list (by rank of mid-career salary):

  • University of Minnesota-Twin Cities: Starting Salary: $46,500; Mid-Career Salary: $83,000 (Tied for 205th in the country)
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison: Starting Salary: $46,900; Mid-Career Salary: $82,200 (Tied for 223rd in the country)
  • North Dakota State University (NDSU): Starting Salary: $46,700; Mid-Career Salary: $75,200 (Tied for 390th in the country)
  • University of North Dakota: Starting Salary: $44,900; Mid-Career Salary: $74,700 (Tied for 404th in the country)
  • St. Cloud State University: Starting Salary: $41,900; Mid-Career Salary: $72,300 (Tied for 454th in the country)
  • University of Minnesota-Duluth: Starting Salary: $42,300; Mid-Career Salary: $71,600 (Tied for 480th in the country)
  • Minnesota State University-Mankato: Starting Salary: $41,400; Mid-Career Salary: $66,300 (Ranked 664 in the country)
  • Bemidji State University: Starting Salary: $39,400; Mid-Career Salary: $60,700 (Tied for 828th in the country)
  • University of Wisconsin-River Falls: Starting Salary: $40,100; Mid-Career Salary: $59,600 (Tied for 865th in the country)





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