Earn More than $1 Million More Over Your Career

By: Lauren Koch & Kelley Ujvary

Graduates of the College of Engineering and Applied Science look forward to earning roughly $1 million in career earnings over their high school classmates who chose not to attend college.

As the future unfolds, one fact is unequivocal – college graduates with technology based degrees have singular advantages.  Moreover, graduates with real-world work experience, world-class preparation at a research university and solid resumes command the attention of employers from around the country and the world. 

Here is encouraging news for all UC-CEAS students and particularly those enrolled in the university's College of Engineering and Applied Science. The return on investment that students receive from a college education, and particularly with a degree from CEAS, surpasses college expenses* by more than 30 times! 


Do you know the value of a college education?  According to current research, CEAS students have a bright future ahead of them. UC-CEAS helps you earn your added $1 million.

The major areas considered in the following presentation include:

  • The cost of tuition as a minimum baseline expense,
  • Higher lifetime earnings for college graduates,
  • Starting salaries that are higher and employment that is more secure, plus
  • Best paying jobs of the future.

UC Tuition for full time, year round in-state students costs approximately $10,400 each year or $42,000 not counting room and board, books, and transportation.   This represents a substantial investment, but the expense has a potential payoff of $1 million additional lifetime earnings!

Average figures as stated from the latest United States Census show that a person with a college BS or BA degree earns $2.3 million over a career, while a person with a high school diploma earns $1.3 million before retiring.  This equates to a $1 million difference between a college degree and a high school diploma.  

Lifetime Earnings

The CEAS Financial Advantage

Explore the job market through UC’s renowned co-op program. CEAS’s five year program which includes mandatory cooperative work experiences provides students with real world work experience, a robust resume and earnings of anywhere from $40,000 to $55,000 while attending the university. Co-op placements help students to buff their resume and provide experience at top companies around the world. 

This practical experience makes CEAS graduates among the most prized by companies of all sizes.  Graduate surveys consistently point to an extraordinary graduate placement rate.

"... UC's coop program gave me a one-up on other students seeking jobs in this competitive market," states CEAS graduate Ricky Wolf, aerospace engineering 2012. "... with the help of UC, I was able to find co-op positions at four different companies in my field and seal a full-time position prior to my graduation."


Students customize their education with UC’s ACCellerated ENgineering Degree program, ACCEND. CEAS offers students the opportunity to earn a master’s degree during the normal time period of its bachelor degree.  Graduating with both bachelor’s and master’s degrees increases lifetime earnings and career opportunities. Again citing from the US Census, those holding masters’ degrees on average make 40% more in additional lifetime earnings and doctoral degree holders double their earnings boost.

Independent Studies:

In July 2011, the Huffington Post reported on The 13 Best-Paying College Majors and their pay scales.  Of these thirteen, ten are degrees in the Engineering field, and eight of them are offered by The University of Cincinnati through the College of Engineering and Applied Science.  The starting salaries for these degrees range from $53,800 to $97,900. 

Georgetown University researchers, Carnevale, Rose and Cheah, published a paper (2007) comparing college degree holders versus occupational lifetime earnings.  The study lists the top five occupations for people at each educational level.  CEAS offers three of the top five for individuals with a Bachelor’s Degree, according to the study. 


CEAS degrees underpin the following top occupations identified in the study - Computer and Information Systems Managers, Engineers in the Aerospace, Biomedical, Chemical, Computer Hardware, Environmental, and Materials disciplines, and Computer Software Engineers. 

The in-depth Georgetown study by Carnwvale, Rose and Cheah identified many of the complexities that arise in determining potential earning rates for individuals.   Many of the factors are beyond an individual’s control like gender, race, workplace prejudices, or age.  However, one conclusion stands out - degree level does matter. 

This study discusses the details, such as programs and opportunities that are presented to students working to obtain degrees.  The College of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Cincinnati is among the list of colleges offering the degrees and programs recommended in this study for today’s students.  


In preparing for the future, attaining a standard of living that ensures a level of comfort is often defined by earnings however job stability often comes into play as well.  Again, college graduates and particularly those in technical areas fare well.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the overall employment rate is 91% and for those who have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher the employment rate is 95.8%. 

In April 2011, the Huffington Post did a story on the top ten Best Paying Jobs of the Future.  Among these top ten, two of the careers are engineering based - Civil Engineering and Computer Applications Software Engineering.

Bottom line, high earnings and more security leads to an elevated standard of living only adding to the return on an investment in an engineering or technology bachelor’s degree (or higher).

Don’t wait.  Start earning your $1 million today!


Click the links for CEAS graduate stories:
Technology Alums Advancing at P&G
DotLoop founder changes an industry
UC Graduate Awarded Highest Honor by President Obama
More Alumni Stories

Click the links to view reference data:
The College Payoff
, by Georgetown researchers, Carnevale, Rose and Cheah
Huffington Post:
Top ten Best Paying Jobs of the Future
Huffington Post
: The 13 Best-Paying College Majors
United States Census
Bureau of Labor Statistics

* Calculation of the 30 Times Claim:
30X determined as follows:  Expenses (tuition of $42,000 + room,board books,transport at $30,000) less co-op earnings (at low of $40,000) = $32,000 divided into $1,000,000 = 31 times.

Click the links to learn more: Learn about CEAS’s Bachelor's, Master and PhD programs, the ACCEND Program and the Professional Practice (Co-op) Program