Grads' Starting Pay Drops for Class of 2009

April 9, 2009 ( - Starting salary offers to the college Class of 2009 have dropped off a bit compared to beginning compensation offers extended to the Class of 2008, according to a new report.

A news release from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) regarding the Spring 2009 version of its periodic Salary Survey said the overall average offer to a 2009 bachelor’s degree graduate was $48,515-down 2.2% from the year before.

The engineering disciplines fared best as a group, posting a 2.3% increase in their overall average offer, which now stands at $58,438. Chemical engineering graduates posted the largest increase with an average offer up 2.8% to $65,403.

Meanwhile, computer engineering graduates posted a 1.8% increase, pushing their average salary offer to $61,017. Experiencing similar increases were civil engineering grads (up 1.7% for an average of $51,793) and mechanical engineering graduates (up 1.6% for an average of $58,749).

Computer science majors didn’t fare as well, losing 3.6% off their average, bringing their current starting salary offer to $57,693.

As a group, the average offer for business disciplines was up 1% to $46,973, and some of the individual disciplines saw modest increases in their average salary offers. For example, the average salary offer to those earning degrees in accounting rose 2% to $48,377, while finance graduates saw their average offer rise 2.3% to $49,754. Business administration/management graduates fared well in comparison, posting a 3.6% increase for an average offer of $45,778.

The surveyis a quarterly report of starting salary offers to new college graduates in 70 disciplines at the bachelor’s degree level. More information is available at .