South Dakota State University (SDSU) Alumni Average Salary

Nestled away in Brookings, S.D., South Dakota State University, a school, has a student population of roughly 11,000. This small-town school with athletic appeal is the stomping ground for many students who go on to live in nearby cities, including Sioux Falls, S.D., Brookings, S.D., and Rapid City, S.D. Replies from former SDSU students to PayScale's salary questionnaire form the basis for this summary.

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South Dakota State University (SDSU) Alumni

Median Salary by Job

National Salary Data 
Design Engineer
12 salaries
Electrical Engineer
11 salaries
Mechanical Engineer
10 salaries
Software Engineer
10 salaries
Structural Engineer
9 salaries
Software Developer
7 salaries
Manufacturing Engineer
5 salaries
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 1 Sep 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 455
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About This School

Administration Lane
Brookings, SD 57007-1898


State School, Research University, For Sports Fans

56 %

20 %

48 %

30 %

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


Graduates of SDSU are found working in a number of different fields including the construction industry, the biotechnology research and development industry, and the health care industry. The majority of alumni accept jobs in the manufacturing industry. Graduates of SDSU earn $56K on average.


A gender wage gap becomes apparent after college, with female graduates earning only $53K on average compared to approximately $68K for male graduates.


SDSU grads who become Manufacturing Engineers garner financial rewards beyond any other job type for this group — these alumni rake in an average about $74K annually. However, Design Engineers and Research Scientists also rank as top-earners (bringing in $71K and around $70K, respectively). Salaries are anything but generous for Technical Project Managers, whose earnings rank lowest on the pay scale at $56K.


Sioux Falls, S.D. is filled with SDSU grads. Durango, Colo. is another hot spot for SDSU grads, where salaries rank at the top of the pay scale (compensation averages out to approximately $75K). Relative to other popular cities, Brookings ranks low on the pay scale (average pay is $50K); however, South Dakota State University grads enjoy the area so much that they often choose to reside here after graduation despite the drawback in salary. Other cities of interest among SDSU alumni include nearby Rapid City, S.D. and Des Moines, Iowa.

Degree Major

Former Jackrabbits who fare the best in terms of salary hold a Master of Business Administration (MBA) and earn a median salary of $80K per year. On the other end of the spectrum, those with a B.A. in Graphic Design tend to do the worst in terms of salary, making an average $43K per year.


Knowledge of Operations Management seems to be related to bigger paychecks; in fact, skilled alumni bring in salaries that are 53 percent more than their former classmates' salaries ($85K). Roughly a sixth of SDSU grads wind up using Project Management at their job, which is one of the most common skills among alumni. Experience with Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Office, and Engineering Design is highly valued as well.

Benefits and Perks

Only about one-third of alumni enjoy paid vacation and one-fifth of alumni receive sick leave. A fair number of grads opt for a 401(k) to save for retirement. For this school, a strong majority of survey participants are the recipients of health benefits, and a fair number of alums pick up dental plans, too. South Dakota State University alumni are rewarded with additional benefits, such as life insurance, a company-subsidized cell phone, a casual working environment, and flexible hours.

Related Schools

University of Missouri grads bring in salaries of around around $55K, making them the most similar to SDSU alumni in terms of earnings. Other schools similar to SDSU include the University of South Dakota, the University of North Dakota, and Michigan Technological University.

South Dakota State University (SDSU) Job Listings

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Key Stats for South Dakota State University (SDSU)


39 %
61 %
$31,562 - $77,106
$47,010 - $81,144
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 6 votes.

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