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Average Salary for Northwestern University Alumni

Students looking for a top value school need look no further than Northwestern University, a private research university based in Evanston, Ill., that is ranked in the top 10 percent of universities by ROI. Though student life tends to revolve around sports, Northwestern University is home to some of the brightest undergraduates in the country, and academics are highly valued. This summary is derived from information given by NU grads who completed the PayScale salary survey.

Overall College ROI Rank

out of 1312
See full list

ROI Rank for Private not-for-profit Universities

out of 476

Mid-Career Salary Rank for Research Universities

out of 267

Typical Early Career Salary

Northwestern University 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
13 salaries
Mechanical Engineer
13 salaries
Project Engineer
11 salaries
Assistant Professor, Postsecondary / Higher Education
10 salaries
Marketing Director
9 salaries
Marketing Manager
9 salaries
Physical Therapist (PT)
8 salaries
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 13 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 1,070
United States (change)

Northwestern University Details

633 Clark St
Evanston, IL 60208


Private Schools, Research Universities, For Sports Fans

93 %

23 %

40 %

14 %

Suggest changes »

Freebase CC-BY Source: Freebase, licensed under CC-BY


NU alumni belong to a wide range of sectors. A few fields in which grads tend to find work include the health care industry, the consulting industry, and the software development industry. The most popular field is the education industry. Those with a degree from NU tend to make about $73K.


There is a sizable difference between men's post-college salaries and women's: the median for the former is $82K, but the median for the latter is only approximately $65K.


Marketing Managers win the contest for best-paid NU alumni, typically making $88K every year, though Software Engineers ($83K), and Senior Mechanical Engineers ($80K) are not far behind. On the lower end, Directors of Communications report making around $68K.


Chicago is a hub for NU graduates — a large number call this city home. The top-paying city popular with NU alumni is Los Angeles, which offers median salaries of $93K. The city with the lowest median paycheck frequented by NU alumni is Washington, DC, where earnings average approximately $62K. Other cities of interest include New York and San Francisco.


Former NU students head to Baxter Healthcare Corporation for above-average paychecks of around $93K. Recent graduates of NU typically find jobs working for the school. Taking into account that the median salary is the lowest at $58K, it may be surprising to learn this is the main place of work for new graduates.

Degree Major

A medical degree leads to the highest pay for NU grads ($152K per year). On the other end of the spectrum, those with a B.A. in Psychology tend to do the worst in terms of salary, making $45K per year.


Knowing Strategic Marketing can pay off big time for former Wildcats, who can expect a 36 percent bigger paycheck than other grads. Close to a sixth of grads report using Project Management as part of their job, making it the most popular skill. Also considered top-notch skills are Data Analysis, Microsoft Office, and Microsoft Excel.

Benefits and Perks

Only two-fifths of alumni earn paid vacation and just one-fourth of alumni get paid sick time. A solid majority of graduates participate in a 401(k) retirement savings plan. Health coverage is awarded to a strong majority of alumni, and dental insurance is issued to most grads as well. Northwestern University alumni are rewarded with additional benefits, such as life insurance, a casual working environment, a company-subsidized cell phone, and tuition reimbursement.

Related Schools

Washington University in St Louis grads report the most similar salaries to NU alums, earning about $73K on average. Other schools similar to NU include the University of Chicago, the University of Notre Dame, and Case Western Reserve University.

Test Scores

Academics 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Scores 2060 2310
ACT Scores 31 34

Key Stats

48 %
52 %
$37,162 - $86,303
$45,168 - $115,958
Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more
Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 302 votes.
$37,498 - $90,176
$49,698 - $122,514
$41,074 - $96,476
$36,369 - $105,774
$39,980 - $113,924
$34,000 - $140,008

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