Though the U.S. economy is still in a slump and the jobs numbers released Friday are still dire, with a rise to 9.2 percent unemployment (the highest rate this year), there is good news. There may not be many entry-level jobs—or at least, fewer people working—but data released by the National Association of Colleges and Employers’ annual Salary Survey showed that the average salary for 2011 grads is higher than it was for 2010.
GOOD reported that a 2011 graduate, on average, will earn $51,018, up 4.8 percent from the 2010 average of $48,661.
The most lucrative majors are, as usual, science and engineering-centric. Petroleum engineers raked in an average salary of $80,849 at their first job.
To those who say an English degree is worthless, the report showed that the degree is worth an average $39,611 for new graduates. The average humanities major pulls down $40,057 at their first job, up 15.3 percent from last year.
Marilyn Makes, the organization’s executive director, said the increases in salary are a “good indication that the job market for new college graduates is gathering strength.”