Average Salary for Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) Alumni

Around 6,000 people attend Carnegie Mellon University, a institution based in Pittsburgh, Pa. Figures cited in this summary are based on graduates' replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.

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Overall College ROI Rank

out of 1223
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ROI Rank for Private not-for-profit Universities

out of 402

Mid-Career Salary Rank for Engineering

out of 34

Typical Early Career Salary

Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) Alumni

Median Salary by Job

National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are the gross, national median (50th percentile). Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
Software Engineer
45 salaries
Senior Software Engineer
26 salaries
Mechanical Engineer
13 salaries
User Experience Designer
10 salaries
Sr. Software Engineer / Developer / Programmer
8 salaries
Senior Mechanical Engineer
8 salaries
Project Manager, Engineering
7 salaries
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 24 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 559

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About This School

5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890


Private School, Research University

88 %

51 %

23 %

13 %

Freebase CC-BY Source: Freebase, licensed under CC-BY; IPEDS (As of January, 2015)


Graduates of CMU work in a variety of sectors including the aerospace and defense industry, the financial services industry, and the consulting industry. The most popular field is the software development industry. Consistent with the high SAT scores reported by CMU alumni, former students go on to earn high salaries. Following graduation, CMU students earn an average of $92K.


There's a noticeable difference between the genders; where the average man hauls in $98K after graduating from CMU, the average woman earns only approximately $73K.


Among CMU graduates, the biggest earners are Engineering Project Managers, who haul in about $130K on average. Next on the list are Senior Software Engineers and Senior Software Engineers, bringing in $120K and $118K, respectively. Sliding in near the bottom are Mechanical Engineers, who report earnings of around $69K.


Though Pittsburgh, Pa. offers the least in terms of financial rewards (median pay is the lowest at $70K), nearly one in seven CMU students continue living here after college. CMU grads with a different agenda may consider the above-average salaries in San Jose, Calif. — pay averages to $125K. Graduates also relocate to New York, N.Y. and Washington, DC.

Degree Major

CMU grads who hold a Master of Science (MS), Electrical Engineering (EE) can expect to fare better than most fellow alumni, earning an average $140K per year. A Bachelor of Science in Physics is less advantageous in terms of earnings; alums with this degree are the lowest earners with a median annual pay of about $59K.


Project Management is a popular skill among CMU alumni, with roughly one in five workers reporting using it on the job. Carnegie Mellon University grads with C experience garner salaries that are 20 percent more than other grads' salaries. Experience with Java, Engineering Design, and C++ is highly valued as well.

Benefits and Perks

A lucky minority (about two-fifths of alumni) are fortunate enough to be compensated for vacation while just one-fourth of alumni get sick time. Health coverage is awarded to nearly all alums, and dental insurance is issued to a large number of former students as well. Almost all grads report contributing to a 401(k). Carnegie Mellon University grads also enjoy benefits like a casual working environment, life insurance, flexible hours, and tuition reimbursement.

Related Schools

Median pay for Cornell University grads is approximately $92K, making their salaries most similar to those of CMU grads. Other schools similar to CMU include Case Western Reserve University, Johns Hopkins University, and Georgetown University.

Test Scores

Academics 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Scores 1990 2280
ACT Scores 30 34

Key Stats for Carnegie Mellon University (CMU)


30 %
70 %
$40,731 - $95,993
$59,917 - $122,455
Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 93 votes.
$92,110 - $127,171
$97,436 - $151,500
$66,707 - $77,000
$114,000 - $170,500
$44,042 - $88,322
$45,000 - $101,912
$69,575 - $138,983
$55,551 - $128,169
United States (change)

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