Average Salary for Michigan State University (MSU) Alumni

Attending Michigan State University, a university can pay off very well in the long run. The school is based in East Lansing, Mich., and it is ranked in the top 16 percent of universities by return on investment. The school attracts plenty of sports fans (Go Spartans!) to its rural campus, though graduates go on to find employment in nearby cities like Detroit, Mich., Chicago, Ill., and Lansing, Mich. The data for this synopsis comes from former Michigan State University students who took the PayScale salary survey.

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Overall College ROI Rank

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ROI Rank for Public (In-State) Universities

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Mid-Career Salary Rank for State School

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Typical Early Career Salary

Michigan State University (MSU) 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.
Packaging Engineer
30 salaries
Financial Analyst
14 salaries
Project Manager, Construction
13 salaries
Operations Manager
12 salaries
Civil Engineer
11 salaries
Software Engineer
10 salaries
Mechanical Engineer
10 salaries
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 1,386
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About This School

East Lansing, MI 48824-1046



State School, Research University, For Sports Fans

77 %

20 %

50 %

21 %

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


Graduates of Michigan State University are found working in a number of different fields including the manufacturing industry, the software development industry, and the education industry. The majority of Michigan State University alumni wind up in the automotive manufacturing industry. Median pay for those who graduated from Michigan State University amounts to around $66K.


After graduation, disparities in salary rise to the surface — males earn an average $74K per year compared to females' $59K.


Among Michigan State University graduates, the biggest earners are Software Engineers, who haul in $82K on average. Next on the list are Construction Project Managers and Mechanical Engineers, bringing in about $76K and approximately $70K, respectively. Collecting the smallest paychecks are Financial Analysts — they bring in $56K.


The most popular destination for former Michigan State University students is Detroit, Mich. In addition, former Michigan State University students often head to New York, N.Y. after graduating, where the median salary comes to $80K in this top-paying city. On the other end, Michigan State University grads flock to Lansing, Mich., which actually offers the weakest median salary of about $52K. In addition, grads flock to Chicago, Ill. as well as Grand Rapids, Mich.

Degree Major

Michigan State University grads who hold a Master of Business Administration (MBA), Finance can expect to fare better than most fellow alumni, earning an average approximately $108K per year. Those with a B.A. in Journalism face salaries on the lower end, coming in at an average $40K per year.


Project Management is a popular skill among Michigan State University alumni, with roughly a sixth of grads reporting using it on the job. Former Spartans with Strategic Planning abilities can expect to make 41 percent more than their former classmates ($92K). Demonstrated ability in Microsoft Office, Microsoft Excel, and Data Analysis rank among leading skills as well.

Benefits and Perks

Only two-fifths of alumni earn paid vacation and just one-fourth of alumni get paid sick time. A large number of survey participants receive health insurance, and a fair number of grads get dental coverage. A large number of former students take advantage of a 401(k) plan. Graduates of Michigan State University are also recipients of life insurance, a casual working environment, a company-subsidized cell phone, and tuition reimbursement.

Related Schools

Alumni of University of Illinois at Chicago pick up average paychecks of around $66K, which is closest to the amount made by Michigan State University grads among similar schools. Other schools similar to Michigan State University include the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Wayne State University, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Michigan State University (MSU) Job Listings

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Test Scores

Academics 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Scores 1430 1850
ACT Scores 23 28

Key Stats for Michigan State University (MSU)


44 %
56 %
$33,607 - $80,457
$41,453 - $101,362
Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 303 votes.
$43,000 - $92,568
$52,308 - $95,497
$72,908 - $100,229
$88,260 - $111,910
$34,282 - $96,310
$41,885 - $97,346
$33,461 - $74,120
$38,298 - $84,739
$33,621 - $90,171

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