Which universities have the highest-paid grads?

Which universities have the highest-paid grads?

Three Australian universities have managed to stay ahead of other tertiary-level institutions when it comes to producing graduates with the highest starting salaries.

For the third year in a row, the Good Universities Guide reported that the University of Southern QLD (USQ) graduates – particularly its engineering graduates – have the highest starting wages in Australia at a median salary of $65,200.

The latest report also revealed USQ as the leading university in terms of student support and the second-leading university in Australia for social equity.

“We have partnered with industry and listened to students and these results are reflective of this focus,” Vice-Chancellor Professor Geraldine Mackenzie said.

“At USQ we strive to create a learning environment that is exciting and innovative using the latest in digital learning technology and research.”

Sharing USQ’s spot are Charles Darwin University and University of Tasmania.

As of May, the ABS reported that the average salary in Australia was $84,968, based from an average weekly ordinary time earnings of $1,634 for full-time working adults.

In Queensland, the average salary is at $82,264, based on an average weekly ordinary time earnings of $1,582 – a 9.9% increase from May 2014.

For the Northern Territory, where Charles Darwin University is based, the average salary was $87,516, based on the average weekly ordinary time salary of $1,683 – an 18.1% jump from May 2014.

The average salary in Tasmania is lower compared to the two other regions at $73,840, coming from an average weekly ordinary time salary of $1,420. However, this was a 13.3% increase from May 2014.

Not so high in salary, but faster to gain employment
While USQ graduates get the highest starting salary, another QLD-based university ranked better in terms of graduate employment.

Bagging five stars for the ninth time in a row, James Cook University (JCU) managed to place in the top 20% Australian universities that have graduates finding full-time employment within four months of graduation.

The University also managed to score five stars in terms of learner engagement or undergraduates providing positive engagement with their learning, social equity, skills development and student support.

JCU Vice Chancellor Professor Sandra Harding pointed to the University’s strong points in teaching and research, which helped boost their graduates’ employability.

JCU’s graduates, on average, secure a $62,000 salary.

Topping the list in full-time employment, however, was NSW-based Charles Sturt University. Some 86% of its graduates manage to quickly find full-time work, a notch higher from the previous report’s 85% rate.

The University also leads in full-time employment rates in a number of fields such as agriculture, veterinary science, environmental science, dental science and teaching.

Charles Sturt graduates also managed to bag an average starting salary of $63,400. This is also higher by $1,400 from JCU’s 2019 results.