University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Alumni Average Salary

The University of California, a school in La Jolla, Calif., has roughly 24,000 undergrads. This overview is derived from alumni replies to PayScale's salary survey.

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University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Alumni

Median Salary by Job

National Salary Data 
Software Engineer
191 salaries
Mechanical Engineer
90 salaries
Senior Software Engineer
71 salaries
Project Engineer
54 salaries
Research Scientist
42 salaries
Electrical Engineer
42 salaries
Research Associate (Unspecified Type)
40 salaries
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Aug 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 4,562
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About This School

9500 Gilman Dr
La Jolla, CA 92093

University of California, San Diego, University of California, San Diego (UCSD)


State School, Research University

86 %

38 %

87 %

30 %

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


Graduates of the UCSD are found working in a number of different fields including the software development industry, the aerospace and defense industry, and the engineering services industry. The biotechnology research and development industry is the sector most highly represented among alumni. Median pay for those who graduated from the UCSD amounts to around $70K.


There is a sizable difference between men's post-college salaries and women's: the median for the former is $78K, but the median for the latter is only approximately $64K.


Former UCSD students with an interest in making money consider becoming Senior Software Engineers, the highest-paying gig (average earnings amount to $102K) among this alumni group. Other well-paid jobs include Software Engineers ($84K) and Software Developers (about $77K). Data Analysts wrap up the bottom of the pay scale, earning $49K.


Many UCSD students are San Diego, Calif.-bound following college. Seattle, Wash. is also a common destination for UCSD grads and offers the best pay with a median salary of $80K. The city with the lowest median paycheck frequented by UCSD alumni is Los Angeles, Calif., where earnings average around $67K. Close-by San Francisco, Calif. and Irvine, Calif. are also desirable cities among UCSD alumni.

Degree Major

With a median annual earnings of about $118K per year, former Tritons who have a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering (CE) are the best paid among the alumni population. The degree that warrants the lowest level of financial compensation is a B.A. in Communication ($48K on average annually).


Former Tritons with C++ experience garner salaries that are 26 percent more than other grads' salaries. Many UCSD grads have knowledge of Microsoft Excel, with roughly one in seven alumni using this program on the clock. Demonstrated ability in Project Management, Microsoft Office, and Data Analysis rank among leading skills as well.

Benefits and Perks

Only about two-fifths of alumni enjoy paid vacation and one-third of alumni receive sick leave. It is no small feat that a large number of grads are given health coverage, and most former students accept dental insurance. A large number of survey participants report contributing to a 401(k). Additional perks enjoyed by University of California grads include a casual working environment, life insurance, a company-subsidized cell phone, and flexible hours.

Related Schools

Compensation averages $69K for University of California alumni, making their earnings most comparable to UCSD grads. Other schools similar to UCSD include the University of California-Irvine, the University of California-Riverside, and the University of California-Los Angeles.

University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Job Listings

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Key Stats for University of California - San Diego (UCSD)


42 %
58 %
$38,404 - $90,636
$48,986 - $101,836
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 48 votes.
$41,270 - $90,883
$64,873 - $115,241
$40,798 - $111,058
$41,377 - $90,321
$40,576 - $106,823
$35,262 - $104,077
$38,934 - $88,331
$42,341 - $96,650

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