The Best College Majors for Your Money

The Best College Majors for Your Money

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the more education you receive, the more income you’re likely to make over the course of your career. But are some degrees worth more than others? A Bankrate study of 162 separate college majors found the investment is more likely to be worthwhile if you choose certain academic programs — especially in the STEM and business fields. There’s a wide range of majors that may help you make the most for your money after college, but here are the top five.

Actuarial Science

Annual Average Income: $108,658

Unemployment: 2.3%

Are you interested in a future as an actuary? Then you’re in luck. Actuarial science stands at the top of Bankrate’s list. Someone with a degree in this field uses math, statistics and economics to evaluate and manage financial risk. Actuaries can work for government agencies, insurance companies, medical practices and more. U.S. News named actuary the second-best business career in 2018.


Annual Average Income: $111,889

Unemployment: 1.4%

If you’re interested in animals, this could be the career for you. Simply put, zoology is the form of biology dedicated to the study of animal life. With a degree in this major, you’ll be studying animals and their behavior, physiology and interactions with their habitats.

With a high average income and such a low unemployment rate, it may be a promising career choice for ambitious students.

Nuclear Engineering

Annual Average Income: $108,591

Unemployment: 1.8%

Overall, engineering is one of the best fields of study in terms of income, but nuclear engineering may be especially lucrative. People who choose this major usually go on to become nuclear engineers in a variety of industries ranging from manufacturing to nuclear power. They may work alongside mechanical and electrical engineers, or they might consult from an office setting.

Health and Medical Preparatory Programs

Annual Average Income: $130,308

Unemployment: 2.3%

Are you good at anatomy, physiology, biology and similar subjects? You might do well in the medical field. Medicine pays well, and there are a lot of options to choose from. Health and medical preparatory programs can help you prepare for a career in nursing, pharmacology, dentistry or one of numerous other exciting areas.

Applied Mathematics

Annual Average Income: $105,679

Unemployment: 2%

If you have a passion for math and solving problems, you could have a bright future ahead of you. A degree in applied mathematics can help you secure a job in a variety of fields from engineering to computer science. Any degree you receive in this area of study could be valuable, whether you stop at a bachelor’s degree or decide to pursue your master’s.

These are a few of the degree programs that have the most financial benefits to offer after you complete your education. This doesn’t mean you can’t find success in other job fields — but knowing which majors are best for your money can also help you make more informed decisions about your future. Ultimately, what matters most is finding a degree that fits your skills and interests, so choose the path that works best for you.

~Here’s to Your Success!

Copyright 2019,