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

The University of California, a school in La Jolla, Calif., has roughly 24,000 undergrads. Replies from former UCSD students to PayScale's salary questionnaire form the basis for this summary.

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College Salary Report


Early Career Salary 


Mid-Career Salary 


% High Meaning 

56 %

Compare to Other 4-Year Schools

University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Median Salary by Job


Software Engineer
139 profiles

Mechanical Engineer
51 profiles

Research Associate, Biotechnology
35 profiles

United States (change)

Senior Software Engineer
35 profiles

Electrical Engineer
31 profiles

Project Engineer
26 profiles

Process Engineer
19 profiles

  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 14 Oct 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 2,305
  • View Table

Find out more about University of California - San Diego (UCSD) pay

About This School

9500 Gilman Dr
La Jolla, CA 92093

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


Engineering, Research University, State School

87 %

52 %

87 %

33 %


Graduates of the UCSD head into a range of vocations when it comes to work; the aerospace and defense industry, the entertainment or video game software development industry, and the engineering services industry are just a few professional areas popular among alumni. The biotechnology research and development industry registers as the most common industry among alumni. Very few UCSD grads go into IT services; in fact, less than five percent of alumni enter this industry. The average starting salary for a graduate of the UCSD is $73K.


Among UCSD alumni, those working as Software Engineering Managers report the highest median pay of $153K, followed by Mechanical Engineers (around $74K), and Software Engineers (about $73K). Relative to other positions, compensation dwindles for Research Associates; alumni in this role face average salaries of $49K.


The most popular destination for former UCSD students is San Diego, Calif. Newport Beach, Calif. is another hot spot for UCSD grads, where salaries rank at the top of the pay scale (compensation averages out to $108K). Home to the lowest median salary for UCSD alumni is Berkeley, Calif., a popular place for former students despite its approximately $50K average paycheck. Other common destinations for UCSD grads include close-by Los Angeles, Calif. and San Francisco, Calif.

Degree Major

UCSD students with a Bachelor's Degree, Computer Science (CS) & Mathematics can expect to make the most money ($155K on average per year) compared to their fellow graduates. A Bachelor of Science in Biology commands less pay, and these degree-holders face median pay of about $50K.


Microsoft Excel is a popular skill among UCSD alumni, with one in seven grads reporting using it on the job. Former Tritons with Product Development abilities can expect to make 76 percent more than their former classmates ($128K). Proficiency in Project Management, Engineering Design, and Microsoft Office command top-of-the-line rewards as well.

Benefits and Perks

Although roughly half of the former students are compensated for vacation days, only two-fifths of alumni are paid for sick time. The vast majority of alums set aside retirement funds in an employer-sponsored 401(k). For this school, almost all alumni are the recipients of health benefits, and a large number of alums pick up dental plans, too. University of California grads are also lucky enough to receive a casual working environment, life insurance, tuition reimbursement, and flexible hours.

Related Schools

University of California graduates, who earn around $73K on average, make a similar amount to UCSD grads. The University of California-Irvine, the University of California-Riverside, and the University of California-Santa Barbara are also similar to UCSD.

University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Job Listings

Test Scores

Academics 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Scores 1820 2160
ACT Scores 28 33

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


40 %
60 %
$30,536 - $94,714
$44,219 - $99,712

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 17 votes.
Less than 1 year
1-4 years
5-9 years
10-19 years
20 years or more
$36,400 - $94,300
$41,496 - $93,598
$34,435 - $115,980
$66,033 - $129,290

More Charts for University of California - San Diego (UCSD)

Most Popular Job for University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Alumni

Most Popular Years Experience for University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Alumni

Most Popular Employer Name for University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Alumni

Most Popular Company Size for University of California - San Diego (UCSD) Alumni

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