Carnegie Mellon University / Wikipedia

College is a time for self-exploration and figuring out what you’re passionate about. One of the most complicated aspects of this, though, is figuring out how to find a job that lines up with your interests. It isn’t enough anymore to simply hope that a job will land in your lap after graduation.

Given the current state of the economy and the competitiveness of the job market, many upperclassmen today are pressured to start looking for solid entry-level jobs as soon as possible. In many cases, though, the university in which they enroll can play a big part in determining success in the real world.

Education and career data site StartClass looked at thousands of colleges across the country to identify those whose graduates earn the highest median salaries upon graduation. It used its Smart Rating of each school—which factors in financial affordability, career readiness, selectivity, expert opinion, academic excellence—as a tiebreaker. The data is from PayScale, which collects these self-reported figures. Note that the numbers for the military academies represent salaries for people in the civilian labor force, and not active service members.

Princeton University

Princeton University Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $60,000

Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon University Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $60,000

Stanford University

Stanford University Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $60,000

Polytechnic Institute of New York University

Polytechnic Institute of New York University Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $60,600

Kettering University

Kettering University Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $60,800

South Dakota School of Mines and Technology

South Dakota School of Mines and Technology Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $61,000

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Worcester Polytechnic Institute Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $61,000

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $61,000

Thomas Jefferson University

Thomas Jefferson University Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $63,400

Loma Linda University

Loma Linda University Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $64,000

Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $64,000

Stevens Institute of Technology

Stevens Institute of Technology Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $64,600

Colorado School of Mines

Colorado School of Mines Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $65,000

United States Air Force Academy

United States Air Force Academy Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $65,000

Montana Tech of the University of Montana

Montana Tech of the University of Montana Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $65,000

California Institute of Technology

California Institute of Technology Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $66,500

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $70,000

Harvey Mudd College

Harvey Mudd College Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $70,000

United States Military Academy

United States Military Academy Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $75,000

United States Naval Academy

United States Naval Academy Post-Graduation Salary | StartClass

Average median salary after graduation: $77,000

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