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Average Salary for Washington State University (WSU) Alumni

Positioned in the top 19 percent of universities by ROI, Washington State University — a public research school in Pullman, Wash., with around 23,000 undergraduate students — gives families an outstanding long-term payout. The school attracts plenty of sports fans to its small-town campus, though graduates go on to find employment in nearby cities like Seattle, Portland, and Spokane. This snapshot results from replies to PayScale's salary survey.

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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

Washington State University (WSU) 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.
Project Manager, Construction
15 salaries
Mechanical Engineer
15 salaries
Account Executive
12 salaries
Software Engineer
11 salaries
Project Engineer
10 salaries
Design Architect
10 salaries
Account Manager
9 salaries
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 15 Apr 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 957

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About This School

French Administration Building
Pullman, WA 99164-5910



State School, Research University, For Sports Fans

65 %

14 %

76 %

32 %

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


Graduates of WSU go into the education industry, the construction industry, and the health care industry, not to mention a variety of other lines of work. The most popular professional field seems to be the software development industry. Starting salaries of around $61K are common among WSU grads.


It's worth noting that female graduates earn a median salary of $54K whereas the men's median is about $68K.


Among WSU alumni, those working as Software Engineers report the highest median pay of $77K, followed by Construction Project Managers ($71K), and Mechanical Engineers ($70K). Relative to other positions, compensation dwindles for Staff Accountants; alumni in this role face average salaries of approximately $42K.


Seattle is filled with WSU grads. It is no surprise that Richland, which hands out the biggest paychecks (the average salary is $66K), is another of the most popular spots for former WSU students. Though Vancouver takes the cake for lowest pay among WSU grads (the median salary is $50K there), it remains a common destination for former students. Portland is also a common pick among WSU grads, along with Spokane.


WSU alumni can earn the most money ($110K) at Microsoft Corp. Projectline Services hands out the smallest paychecks, where median earnings come out to around $44K.

Degree Major

A graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering (EE) from WSU can rake in a whopping about $113K per year, more than any other degree from this school. Those holding a B.A. in Business & Marketing are less fortunate in terms of earnings, bringing in approximately $41K per year.


Project Management is a popular skill among WSU alumni, with one in seven grads reporting using it on the job. Former Cougars who have experience with Engineering Design can expect to make 37 percent more than other alumni ($84K on average). Other prime know-hows include Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Office, and Customer Service.

Benefits and Perks

When it comes to benefits, there is room for improvement — only two-fifths of alumni are paid for vacation and just one-third of alumni for sick time. A solid majority of respondents allocate some part of their earnings to a company-sponsored 401(k) savings plan. Benefits are rather generous for graduates of this school; the greater part of graduates are rewarded with health insurance and most respondents report dental coverage, too. Graduates of Washington State University are also recipients of a casual working environment, life insurance, a company-subsidized cell phone, and tuition reimbursement.

Related Schools

Among alumni of similar schools, Colorado State University grads (who make an average of $61K) earn salaries most similar to WSU alumni. Other schools similar to WSU include the University of Washington-Seattle Campus, Oregon State University, and the University of Oregon.

Test Scores

Academics 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Scores 1350 1700
ACT Scores 19 25

Key Stats for Washington State University (WSU)


43 %
57 %
$35,319 - $73,238
$40,952 - $93,691
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 437 votes.
$55,134 - $94,920
$66,645 - $101,736
$58,763 - $61,237
$41,212 - $47,000
$39,458 - $86,326
$39,466 - $79,891
$35,236 - $78,866
$35,971 - $73,074
$41,350 - $84,179

More Salary Charts for Washington State University (WSU)

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