NEW YORK, Aug. 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Petroleum Engineering is the most valuable college major, according to a new report from TheCashlorette.com. The study examined median incomes and unemployment rates for U.S. adults with only a bachelor's degree across 173 different majors. Click here for more information:
The most lucrative college major, Petroleum Engineering – or, the study of extracting oil and gas from beneath the earth – boasts the top median income ($134,840.88), more than double the median income of all full-time workers with only a bachelor's degree ($62,217). That, coupled with an elite 2.38% unemployment rate (13th overall), propelled Petroleum Engineering to the top of the ranks.
On the other hand, those holding only a bachelor's degree in Clinical Psychology, the least valuable college major in the study, will have the hardest time landing a job (8.06% unemployment rate). The median income of $43,092.81 is also 31% less than the overall median, good for a bottom 10 finish in that category.
5 Least Valuable College Majors:
169. Studio Arts 170. Human Services/Community Organization 171. Composition/Rhetoric 172. Miscellaneous Fine Arts 173. Clinical Psychology
"When deciding on a college major, it's important to not only choose something that interests you, but also a field that offers opportunity for employment and earning potential," said Sarah Berger, founder of TheCashlorette.com. "Picking a major is the first step to fulfilling your career aspirations, so be sure to research the job prospects, potential salaries and whether an advanced degree may be necessary to really get ahead."
Well-paying STEM degrees comprise the entirety of the top 10, while other popular non-STEM majors like Business Management/Administration (70), History (109), Liberal Arts (113) and English Language/Literature (122) all fare lower on the list.
Median income and unemployment rate for each major was determined by analyzing weighted micro data from the U.S. Census American Community Survey for 2011-2015. The methods were based on a 2015 study conducted by researchers at Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workforce. Median incomes and unemployment rates are for all full-time working U.S. adults younger than age 65 with only a bachelor's degree. Incomes have been adjusted for inflation.
About Sarah Berger and TheCashlorette.com
Sarah Berger is "The Cashlorette." TheCashlorette.com (a Bankrate, Inc. company) is a personal finance blog for young women. The Cashlorette's mission is to empower young women to live the life they want, without sacrificing savings or going into debt.