0

This question already has an answer here:

I received a BS in Biology/Environment (Non-Engineering) and MS in Civil & Environmental Engineering. My experiences have been consecutively more specific and I'm completely competent with my specialization.

My question is then- where should my salary be for an entry-level Engineering 1 position? Should I be compensated (a) the same level as an undergrad in Civil & Env. Eng. or (b) more because my science undergrad degree is relevant and I have an advanced degree?

I received 2 job offers last week, both of which are just below the median value for an entry-level Env. Eng. 1 position. I cannot find statistics that account for my educational background (non-engineering undergrad and engineering masters) even though I know it happens.

marked as duplicate by mcknz, Myles, gnat, IDrinkandIKnowThings, Chris E Dec 6 '16 at 18:21

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

  • Your university should have statistics on recent graduates. Check those, where are your statistics coming from? – enderland Dec 5 '16 at 20:20
  • 1
    Assuming you are going into civil and environmental engineering, only your most advanced degree is likely to matter. No one would realistically care what your undergraduate degree was in unless, say, the position called for someone with biology experience in addition to civil engineering. You don't pay your neurologist any more or less, for example, because she majored in poetry as an undergraduate. You just care how she did in med school. – Justin Cave Dec 5 '16 at 20:27
  • @enderland, The university does provide those stats for undergrads, but I was more interested in the results for my combined degrees. – MS.Jessica Dec 5 '16 at 20:30
  • @Justin Cave , that seems logical and is a great example, thank you! – MS.Jessica Dec 5 '16 at 20:32
  • 1
    Entry level is entry level no matter what other education you have. I would also be wary of the statistics on median levels of salaries because they are often based on self-reported figures and therefore not necessarily reliable. If you think the job opportunity is good and you can live on the salary, then holding out for an increase (past one round of negotiation which almost every place expects and it would be a big red flag if they didn't) may not be in your best interests. You will have the change to go for much higher salaries after you get the experience. – HLGEM Dec 5 '16 at 20:36
1

My question is then- where should my salary be for an entry-level Engineering 1 position? Should I be compensated (a) the same level as an undergrad in Civil & Env. Eng. or (b) more because my science undergrad degree is relevant and I have an advanced degree?

You should be compensated based on what the market demands for the position being filled. If you apply for an entry-level Engineer position, you should be compensated based on what the market commands for that entry-level Engineer position.

While your MS might help you be seen as more desirable than others and thus attract more offers, you might not get any more just because you have both a BS and MS, if the job only requires a BS.

In most companies, when a new job is being proposed, a Job Requisition is created specifying the salary range and the requirements. If the requirements are for a BS, having an MS might not add a lot of value from the company's point of view. (To be a bit absurd, an entry-level retail clerk is still filling a retail clerk's role even if holding a PhD.)

Entry-level often means "has never actually performed this role professionally before". Multiple degrees doesn't change that. Many new graduates find that they way they were taught, and the way they are actually required to perform their job are very different.

Seek out entry-level positions that state "MS Degree" as a requirement. That's more likely to be a path to a higher salary offer.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.