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Harvard Defeats University of California, Berkeley to Win Salary Madness Championship

PayScale also announces Salary Madness Sweepstakes
Seattle March 19, 2013 - Harvard University, for the second consecutive year, prevails in the championship game of the Salary Madness bracket.  This year's championship game sees Harvard and University of California, Berkeley, face off.  Harvard wins, though, in a tight game with a national median alumni pay of $92,200 vs. California at $89,600.  This is a pay difference of less than 3 percent. 
Harvard keeps the Salary Madness title in the Ivy League for the third consecutive year. Harvard grabbed the title in 2012 and 2013, while Princeton took it home in 2011. 

PayScale analyzed the March Madness brackets by typical salaries of graduates from each participating institution and came up with its own bracket based on who would "win" in a battle of alumni salaries rather than basketball prowess. All salary data used in the 2013 PayScale Salary Madness brackets are from PayScale's database of more than 36 million employee career profiles.

2013 Salary Madness highlights include:

1. The average alumni salary for the 68 schools in the tournament is $68,800 which is just slightly above the average of $67,500 for 2012 and the $68,300 average in 2011. This is the first time in more than three years that the average pay across the set of schools increased.

2. There was a notable increase in toss-up games (difference of less than 2 percent between the median pay of the two teams). This year there are 10, compared to only three last year.

3. Gonzaga and Indiana are tied for the best paid #1 seed at $68,500. However, Kansas and Louisville aren't far behind at ~$67,000.

"Ivy League schools are not known for their sports prowess, but are known for their high earnings," said Katie Bardaro, lead economist at PayScale. "It is no surprise that they continue to dominate the Salary Madness competition."

Previous Salary Madness brackets can be found here: also announced its 2013 Salary Madness Sweepstakes. PayScale is giving giving away a $100 Amazon gift card to one lucky winner. The bracket and the contest go live on Tuesday, March 19. Entries will be accepted until midnight on Friday, April 5.

About PayScale

Creator of the largest database of individual compensation profiles in the world, PayScale, Inc. provides an immediate and precise snapshot of current market salaries to employees and employers through its online tools and software. PayScale's products are powered by innovative search and query algorithms that dynamically acquire, analyze and aggregate compensation information for millions of individuals in real time. Publisher of the quarterly PayScale Index™, PayScale's subscription software products for employers include PayScale MarketRate™ and PayScale Insight™. Among PayScale's 2,200 corporate customers are organizations small and large across industries including Zappos, Volunteers of America and Manpower. For more information, visit

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