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Business Career Median Salary and Signing Bonus for 2008 College Graduates

We collected median salary and bonus by business area for graduates from the top undergraduate business programs in the last year where data have been reported - 2008. Given the tough job market today these salaries may be above what is obtainable - particularly in the finance field.

The highest compensation came in finance and strategy positions. Venture capital is well paid but very tough to break into. Investment banking and consulting jobs are also well paid and somewhat easier to break into.

Bear in mind that some of these higher paying areas may have either very long work hours or pressurized working conditions. Thus, on a per hour basis these professions aren't necessarily the highest paid.

Some of the lower paid areas like advertising and PR are appealing and interesting to large populations. The work is creative and often fun. These professions also can be highly remunerative once advancement takes place.

To state the obvious, you need money to survive and thrive but it is not everything. If you can find a profession that is truly engaging for you then taking top dollar for your services may be somewhat less important.

Compare to MBA Salaries

view list of top business recruiters of MBAs and college graduates

Glassdoor.com - a good source for salary data.

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Methodology: We looked at salary data from a number of undergraduate programs and did not include information from all programs. The main reason is that we required that both median salary and some type of average signing bonus be provided for professions in a granular way. Many schools provide average salary by major or average salaries without signing bonus data but these information tend to obscure the actual potential remuneration for different career choices.



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