Average Salary for Michigan State University (MSU) Alumni

Around 38,000 undergrads attend Michigan State University, a school in East Lansing, Mich.. The school sits 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. This snapshot results from replies to PayScale's salary survey.

Read More

Overall College ROI Rank

out of 1223
See full list

ROI Rank for Public (In-State) Universities

out of 408

Mid-Career Salary Rank for State School

out of 445

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. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
Packaging Engineer
33 salaries
Project Manager, Construction
14 salaries
Financial Analyst
14 salaries
Operations Manager
13 salaries
Civil Engineer
12 salaries
Software Engineer
11 salaries
Account Manager
11 salaries
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 23 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 1,497

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

Comp Managers: Start Here »

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 automotive manufacturing industry is the sector most highly represented among alumni. The average starting salary for a graduate of Michigan State University is about $66K.


It's worth noting that female graduates earn a median salary of approximately $59K whereas the men's median is $74K.


Former Michigan State University students with an interest in making money consider becoming Human Resources Directors, the highest-paying gig (average earnings amount to $101K) among this alumni group. Other well-paid jobs include Software Engineers (around $81K) and Construction Project Managers ($76K). Financial Analysts pick up $55K in financial rewards, representing the lowest-paid position among alumni.


Many Michigan State University grads flock to Detroit, Mich. New York, N.Y. is also a common destination for Michigan State University grads and offers the best pay with a median salary of about $75K. The city with the lowest median paycheck frequented by Michigan State University alumni is Ann Arbor, Mich., where earnings average $53K. Chicago, Ill. is also a common pick among Michigan State University grads, along with Lansing, Mich.

Degree Major

Michigan State University grads who hold a medical degree can expect to fare better than most fellow alumni, earning an average $108K per year. A B.A. in Criminal Justice commands less pay, and these degree-holders face median pay of $41K.


Michigan State University alumni are often well versed in Project Management, with one in six grads ending up in jobs that require this skillset. Competency in Strategic Planning translates into above-average pay for former Spartans — they earn 38 percent more than their fellow graduates. Demonstrated ability in Microsoft Office, Microsoft Excel, and Data Analysis rank among leading skills as well.

Benefits and Perks

Slightly more than two-fifths of survey participants can rely on paid vacation days, but just one in four survey participants have the luxury of paid sick time. It is no small feat that a large number of survey participants are given health coverage, and a fair number of graduates accept dental insurance. To plan for old age, most alums maintain savings accounts through a company's 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

University of Illinois at Chicago graduates, who earn around $65K on average, make a similar amount to Michigan State University grads. The University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Wayne State University, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison are also similar to Michigan State University.

Test Scores

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

Key Stats for Michigan State University (MSU)


44 %
56 %
$33,599 - $79,077
$41,541 - $100,678
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 394 votes.
$54,664 - $100,105
$43,000 - $92,368
$52,308 - $95,497
$88,260 - $111,910
$33,985 - $96,039
$41,718 - $90,311
$33,081 - $76,653
$38,705 - $85,873
$33,446 - $85,848

More Salary Charts for Michigan State University (MSU)

United States (change)

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Salary and career advice to put you a step ahead.
newsletter icon


Recent Blog Posts on Career News

Want to Get More Specific? Get a Salary Report Customized for YOU

Tell us about your current job and your skillset, and we’ll let you know how much employers are paying in your area.