Former Columbia students are professionally suited for a wide range of fields including the health care industry, the consulting industry, and the financial services industry. The most highly represented industry among alumni is the education industry. It is typical for Columbia grads — a group that usually scores high on the SATs — to earn above-average incomes as well. Columbia graduates see an average starting salary of $79K.
After graduation, women go on to earn an average of $70K per year compared to men, who earn about $87K.
The most lucrative professionals among Columbia alumni are Software Engineers and Data Scientists; they earn a median annual salary of around $100K. Executive Directors aren't slouches either, bringing in $86K. Salaries are anything but generous for Non-Profit Organization Program Coordinators, whose earnings rank lowest on the pay scale at $46K.
More often than not, Columbia grads continue living in New York, N.Y. (roughly one-half of former students to be exact) even though the average salary here takes last place on the pay scale (approximately $76K). Alternatively, San Francisco, Calif. is home to some of the highest salaries — median pay is about $87K — which is an (obvious) draw for many Columbia grads. Alumni express interest in Los Angeles, Calif. and Boston, Mass. as well.
With a median annual earnings of $134K per year, former Lions who have a Master of Business Administration (MBA), Finance are the best paid among the alumni population. Average annual salaries for those with a master's in social work are the lowest of the pack, earning $50K.
Knowledge of Strategic Planning seems to be related to bigger paychecks; in fact, skilled alumni bring in salaries that are 14 percent more than their former classmates' salaries ($90K). Slightly less than a fifth of Columbia grads wind up using Project Management at their job, which is one of the most common skills among alumni. Proficiency in Data Analysis, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft Office command top-of-the-line rewards as well.
Benefits and Perks
Though vacation and sick days are paid for some, these benefits are reported by the minority of graduates (one-third of alumni and one-fifth of alumni, respectively). Health benefits extend to most alums, and a strong majority of respondents also receive dental coverage. Most survey participants take advantage of a 401(k) plan. Alumni of Columbia University in the City of New York also take in a casual working environment, life insurance, a company-subsidized cell phone, and tuition reimbursement.
Among alumni of similar schools, Yale University grads (who make an average of $79K) earn salaries most similar to Columbia alumni. Other schools similar to Columbia include Yeshiva University, New York University, and Princeton University.