Entering the Job Market? Here are the Highest Paying Entry Level Jobs and Internships for 2019

As new job seekers kick-start their careers, they’ll be looking to apply to internships and entry level jobs that will help them build a strong foundation. We know that compensation is the top factor people consider when looking for a new job so, by leveraging Glassdoor’s unique data on salaries, we’ve compiled two lists to shed light into which employers are offering the most competitive internship pay and which types of entry level jobs command the highest salaries.

Key Takeaways:

  • Tech roles and tech companies are most represented among the highest paying entry level and internship spots. However, we’ve seen in previous research that tech companies are hiring for both non-tech and technical roles. Conversely, tech roles such as data scientist and software engineer can be found at non-tech companies as well. This is great news for job seekers who are excited to work at tech companies and also for those who want to align their technical skills with passions that lie outside of big tech.
  • Finance and consulting companies follow tech as the most represented industries on the highest paying internships list. Major finance companies, such as Capital One, Bank of America and J.P. Morgan, all offer median monthly base pay for interns above $5,500. Interns at these finance companies would make well above the April 2019 median U.S. salary of $52,807 if they received this salary year-round. Interns at Facebook earn a median monthly pay of $8,000, which, if earned year-round, would be the equivalent of over 1.8X the median national salary (at $96,000 per year).
  • Job seekers looking to start their careers in any of the 25 occupations on the highest paying entry level jobs list can expect to earn above the median U.S. salary. Data scientist is the highest paying entry level role with a median base salary of $95,000. Investment banking analyst, a finance role, also rises to the top of the list, boasting a median base salary of $85,000 for entry level roles.

Highest Paying Entry Level Jobs

The highest paying entry level jobs list highlights the 25 entry level positions with the highest salaries. We compiled this list using Glassdoor salary reviews left in 2018 from US-based employees aged 25 years old and younger. This ensures that we are capturing salaries from employees with minimal work experience in order to highlight what job seekers can expect to earn starting off in these roles. The full list of the highest paying entry level jobs and their median base salary is shown in the table below. The highest paying entry level job is data scientist, which has a median base salary of $95,000.  Not only is this role high paying, but it has also reigned as the Best Job in America for four straight years, touting strong job satisfaction and numerous job openings as well. As more companies across various industries continue to invest in technology and collect mass amounts of data at scale, data scientists play an increasingly vital role in organizing and analyzing data to produce valuable insights that can inform key business decisions.  

Software engineer and product manager, also tech roles, are the second and third highest paying entry level jobs, paying $90,000 and $89,000 respectively. The majority of the highest paying entry level jobs are tech roles, demonstrating how employers are in need of talented tech talent and are willing to pay high salaries for individuals ready to develop their careers in these fields. There are also several different types of engineering roles, such as mechanical engineers and quality engineers, that boast high paying entry level salaries. We see several different types of engineers making high entry level salaries, likely due to the specialized education and extensive skills training required to succeed in these roles.

25 Highest Paying Entry Level Jobs in the U.S. for 2019

Rank Job Title Median Base Salary
1 Data Scientist $95,000
2 Software Engineer $90,000
3 Product Manager $89,000
4 Investment Banking Analyst $85,000
5 Product Designer $85,000
6 UX Designer $73,000
7 Implementation Consultant $72,000
8 Java Developer $72,000
9 Systems Engineer $70,000
10 Software Developer $68,600
11 Process Engineer $68,258
12 Front End Developer $67,500
13 Product Engineer $66,750
14 Actuarial Analyst $66,250
15 Electrical Engineer $66,000
16 Mechanical Engineer $65,000
17 Design Engineer $65,000
18 Applications Developer $65,000
19 Test Engineer $65,000
20 Programmer Analyst $65,000
21 Quality Engineer $64,750
22 Physical Therapist $63,918
23 Field Engineer $63,750
24 Project Engineer $63,000
25 Business Analyst $63,000

Source: Glassdoor Economic Research (Glassdoor.com/research)

Highest Paying Internships

This list of the 25 highest paying internships highlights employers offering the most competitive intern pay in the U.S. We compiled this list using Glassdoor salary reviews reported by interns between March 1, 2018 and February 28, 2019.  

Unsurprisingly, tech companies are the most represented among the highest paying internships, accounting for almost half (44 percent) of the companies on this list. Finance and consulting companies are the second and third most represented industries. As part of their effort to recruit top talent, especially in today’s tight labor economy, these companies are offering high salaries to their interns in order to attract the best of the best candidates. The median monthly pay reported by interns is highest at Facebook, where the median monthly pay is $8,000. Amazon interns had a median monthly pay of $7,7,25, followed by Salesforce interns at $7,667. Five other employers offered median monthly pay for interns above $7,000. In other words, if these salaries were being paid full time, these interns would make approximately $84,000 a year, well above the U.S. median salary.

25 Highest Paying Internships in the U.S. for 2019

Rank Employer Median Monthly Pay
1 Facebook $8,000
2 Amazon $7,725
3 Salesforce $7,667
4 Google $7,500
5 Microsoft $7,250
6 Uber $7,167
7 Bloomberg L.P. $7,000
8 Capital One $7,000
9 Apple $6,667
10 Bank of America $5,833
11 J.P. Morgan $5,667
12 Goldman Sachs $5,367
13 Viasat $5,333
14 Visa Inc. $5,167
15 Intel Corporation $5,000
16 SAP $4,833
17 EY $4,825
18 Tesla $4,667
19 Deloitte $4,667
20 Cisco Systems $4,667
21 PwC $4,500
22 KPMG $4,500
23 Genentech $4,500
24 Dell $4,333
25 Boeing $4,167

Source: Glassdoor Economic Research (Glassdoor.com/research)

Conclusion

In today’s strong job market, it’s a great time for college students and recent graduates to enter the workforce and start their careers. With historically low unemployment rates and growing job counts, job seekers are in the driver’s seat when it comes to where they want to work and employers are willing to pay top dollar for roles and skills that are in high demand but short supply.

For those deciding on the direction they want their careers to take, the highest paying entry level jobs list, in particular, gives insight into which roles offer high salaries from the very start. This list can serve as a menu of aspirational jobs to potentially work toward, especially as the majority of these entry level jobs are in the STEM field and require strong technical skills. Young students interested in these types of roles should start thinking about how they can prepare for these STEM emphases in their educations, whether that be informal academic settings or through alternative skill-building courses like boot camps.

While we know pay is important, the three factors that matter most to long-term job satisfaction are culture and values, career opportunities and trust in senior leadership. Each of these factors, along with pay, are critical considerations for a job seeker selecting a role and career.

How We Determine the Highest Paying Entry Level Jobs List

Glassdoor’s Highest Paying Entry Level Jobs report identifies the jobs with the highest median annual base salaries as reported by U.S.-based employees aged 25 or younger on Glassdoor over the time period 1/01/18 – 12/31/18. Jobs considered for this report must have received at least 25 salary reports in U.S. dollars by U.S-based employees, aged 25 or younger, during the timeframe. In cases where job titles have the same median monthly pay, the job title with the greater number of salary reports receives higher rank. This report takes into account job title normalization that groups similar job titles. Intern level jobs were excluded from this report.

How We Determine the Highest Paying Internships List

Glassdoor’s Highest Paying Internships report identifies companies with the highest median monthly pay for internships as reported by U.S.-based interns on Glassdoor over the time period 3/01/18 – 2/28/19. To be considered, companies with internship programs must have received at least 25 salary reports in U.S. dollars by U.S-based interns during the timeframe. In cases where companies have the same median monthly pay, the company with the greater number of salary reports receives higher rank.