Do Engineers Make Good Money?

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

a male engineer holding a piece of rolled paper

Do Engineers Make Good Money?

The field of engineering encompasses a huge number of subfields and subspecialties. In point of fact, the phrase is insufficient on its own to encompass the several subfields that make up engineering. Engineers typically focus their expertise on a particular field, branch of science, or application.

Engineers can be found working in nearly every industry. But the highest-paying ones are only found in some fields and not others. Because of this, simply making the decision to major in engineering is not enough. It is necessary for you to select the type that best fits your needs.

What type of skills should engineers have?

What are the necessary skills for engineers to have? There are certain skills that are universal to the engineering profession, despite the fact that different types of engineering education will impart different skills and knowledge.

Mathematics is almost certainly the single most critical skill that all engineers need to possess. To be successful in this field, engineers require a solid foundation in mathematics, including the fundamentals of geometry, algebra, and calculus, amongst many other areas of study.

an electrical engineer working using his tablet

The most highly compensated engineers will also develop strong problem-solving skills, regardless of the career path they choose. The following are examples of the kinds of issues that an engineer might tackle:

  • How to build a bridge that is pleasing to the eye and structurally sound
  • How to improve software systems so they create better efficiencies
  • How to develop construction standards and specifications
  • How to choose the best material for a specific product
  • How to safely organize a city so traffic flows properly

These are just a few examples of the difficult challenges that engineers encounter on a daily basis. There are many more.

What are the Highest Paying Engineering Jobs?

Wondering how engineers make good money (like really good money)? The Bureau of Labor Statistics identifies the aforementioned jobs as the most promising for a successful and wealthy career in engineering.

Engineering Manager

You will need at least five years of experience in the profession to become an engineering manager, despite the fact that a bachelor’s degree will get you started on the route to becoming one.

Engineering managers are required to operate in demanding and complicated conditions, and they are responsible for developing specific strategies that will lead to the completion of a project. This is primarily a managerial position; nonetheless, you must have a solid foundation in engineering to be successful in this role.

Because of this, the majority of engineering managers hold a degree of at least a bachelor’s in one of the various subfields of engineering. It is possible that taking courses in business and management is also required in order to qualify for one of these high-paying engineering jobs.

You may expect a salary of more than $208,000 if you make your way up to the top of this field, making it not just one of the positions with the greatest salaries in the engineering industry, but also one of the best careers in the country.

Computer Hardware Engineer

As consumers, we don’t typically give much thought to the hardware. More consideration is being given to the programs and applications (apps) that we use on a regular basis.

But what about the chips, processors, displays, and other memory devices, not to mention the myriad of other physical technologies that make software possible?

Computer hardware engineers are the ones who are responsible for making everything feasible by creating, testing, and analyzing new pieces of hardware.

The top 10% of workers in this field can anticipate annual incomes of more than $185,000, despite the fact that job growth is not anticipated to be particularly robust due to the possibility that computing networks will lessen the requirement for more physical equipment and hardware.

Aerospace Engineer

The aerospace sector is steadily moving in the direction of increased productivity, expanded capabilities, and the capacity to carry people and cargo in a manner that is less expensive.

Aerospace engineers are experts in a wide variety of fields, including but not limited to physics, chemistry, complex mathematics, and computer programming, and they will be in charge of leading this effort.

If an aerospace engineer is in the top 10 percent of their field, they can anticipate earning more than $166,000 annually. Over a third of them are employed in the production of products and parts, whereas just over one-sixth are employed by the government.

Nuclear Engineer

When done so in a secure manner, nuclear energy has the potential to be one of the most promising and effective kinds of power.

However, in order to exploit this source to its full potential, highly trained people are required, such as nuclear engineers (who can investigate and develop novel strategies for reaping the benefits of radioactive material).

The majority of jobs in the private sector simply require a bachelor’s degree, although certain positions may call for a master’s or even a doctorate degree in nuclear engineering.

The median income is excellent, and those in the top 10% of engineers make good money of more than $179,000.

It is anticipated that the demand for nuclear engineers would drop dramatically, despite the fact that the pay is great; this is due to the fact that cheaper natural gas may eat away at the demand for nuclear energy.

Nuclear engineers may be less prevalent than other types of engineers despite the high compensation because the demand for their services has decreased.

Chemical Engineer

If you have ever put gas in your automobile, taken any kind of medication, or even eaten food that has been processed, then you have profited from the work of a chemical engineer.

These professionals are the ones who come up with solutions to difficulties with chemicals, and their work is frequently put to use to enhance manufacturing, product quality, or production procedures.

In addition to this, they might develop protocols for working with potentially hazardous compounds.

The top 10 percent of chemical engineers make good money of more than $176,000 if they are successful in their careers.

The job market is expected to expand by 4% in the next years, which is the same rate of expansion as the average for all occupations in the United States.

Is it necessary for engineers to pursue higher education?

Continuing your education is something that should be prioritized no matter what line of business you are in. You must always stay up to date on the most recent strategies and technological developments, regardless of whether you operate as a petroleum engineer or as an engineering manager.

Even time-honored practices, such as road building and bridge construction, are subject to ongoing development in the realm of engineering, which is a sector that is constantly undergoing change and improvement.

a man reading a book by the window

It is necessary for engineers of all stripes to have an education in the most recent technologies. Even though you may not have taken any courses in software or coding during your time at college, it is highly likely that having a working knowledge of computer applications that are relevant to your line of work will prove to be extremely helpful.

You can retain a high aptitude for the subject of engineering by attending classes, seminars, and conferences relating to engineering software.

If you already have a bachelor’s degree and are employed in a certain subfield of engineering, it is entirely feasible that earning a master’s degree might propel you to the next level of your professional life.

A master’s degree is not required, and in many cases, experience is just as beneficial as (or even better than) formal in-person or online classes, but it can position you for future success and promotion in your career.

For instance, geological engineers who get a master’s degree in a field that is immediately relevant to their work stand a better chance of advancing in their professions and increasing their earning potential.

Employers looking for geological engineers with a high level of expertise may find those who have completed a program lasting two years in addition to their bachelor’s degree more desirable.

What is the highest-paying job for an Engineer with a master’s degree?

If we are to choose only one, which kind of engineers make good money with a master’s degree? One of the many advantages of pursuing a career in engineering is the possibility of entering a high-paying position with only a bachelor’s degree in hand. You could be a research information scientist and earn more than $189,000

A master’s degree in the proper field is required in order to work as an information research scientist. The majority of engineers in this field have a master’s degree in computer engineering from an accredited institution.

Female engineer holding a clip board

Math, coding, analysis, and a true spirit of invention are just some of the tools that these highly experienced experts use to develop novel approaches to computer technology. They create software experiments, find solutions to difficult computing problems, and develop systems that provide the basis for modern computing.

It is difficult to envisage the very mobile and information-dense society that people will live in today if information research scientists are not present.

What are the ways engineers can make more money in today’s market?

In the current economic climate, how exactly can engineers increase the amount of money they bring in?

In today’s competitive job market, there are a few crucial new strategies to increase one’s salary as an engineer. Here are those techniques.

1. Maintain a professional engineer (PE) license

The benefits of keeping a PE license can vary based on your area of concentration and the direction you intend to take your career; nonetheless, becoming a PE can frequently open the door to management jobs with greater salaries.

There is also an increasing number of customers who would rather do business exclusively with certified PEs.

2. Pick a new engineering career path

The thought of switching specializations in the middle of a career might be intimidating; nevertheless, if you are trying to increase your wages, it may be worth it, in the long run, to retool what you currently know and apply it to a different field.

A product design specialist working in front of his laptop

Make sure you’re prepared to take on a new skill set before you go in headfirst. If you are considering making a job move in the near future, enrolling in professional development hours (PDHs) may be able to assist you in becoming familiar with important concepts, regulations and standards, and best practices.

3. Use your connections

Engineers make good money by networking. It is essential, especially when seeking chances that pay more.

Reach out to a mentor in your industry for advice and support if you have access to one. They can be able to provide great insight on how to begin a job search or good advice on how to accomplish your wage goals. They could also provide you with useful information.

If you are a member of a professional organization such as ASME, you have access to its networking platform, which allows you to connect with other professionals in a variety of ways, including participation in committees and collaborations, volunteer work, and more.

It is impossible to predict what kinds of opportunities may arise as a result of making new contacts.

4. Go remote

There is now a workable option available in place of relocation alterations. Over the past few years, there has been a significant surge in the use of remote work as well as hybrid models, which enables engineers to perform the majority of their job, if not all of them, from a distance.

Unidentified person typing in a table.

There are still some engineering occupations that require you to be physically present, such as working as a pump engineer or in industrial robots, but the majority of technical work can now be done remotely.

Check out job listings on websites and social media platforms like Linkedin to see what roles are available.

5. Sharpen your digital skills

It has been estimated that up to fifty percent of engineers make good money by requiring additional training in order to keep up with the rapid speed of the digitization of the engineering business.

Engineers, regardless of the specific area in which they choose to specialize, should make it a practice to continue their education throughout their careers, particularly in regard to emerging digital technologies.

Learning new skills on a consistent basis can assist you in growing and developing in your job, and it can also help you increase the possible amount of money you can earn.

The following are some quick and simple ways that you can improve your skills:

  • Stay up-to-date on industry news and development through magazines, online videos, podcasts, and more
  • Participate in your professional association’s conferences and committees
  • Volunteer for projects or tasks at work that involve learning new tools
  • Enroll in a PDH course to deepen your knowledge of digital skills


In the ever-evolving world of technology and innovation, the question is not just whether engineers make good money, but how they can leverage their skills, education, and experience to maximize their earning potential.

The evidence is clear: engineers make good money, and this trend shows no signs of slowing down. From various engineering disciplines to the influence of education and experience, the factors contributing to an engineer’s salary are multifaceted.

What Does the Future Hold for Engineers?

The future for engineers is bright and filled with opportunities. As technology advances, the need for skilled engineers in various fields will only grow. Automation, artificial intelligence, renewable energy, and other emerging trends are shaping the way engineers work and the problems they solve.

In this dynamic environment, engineers make good money by staying ahead of the curve, embracing innovation, and adapting to new challenges. The globalization of engineering also opens doors to work in different parts of the world, further enhancing earning potential.

The future of engineering is not just about making good money; it’s about contributing to a world that is constantly evolving, improving, and seeking solutions to complex problems.

Your Path to Success

Your path to success in engineering is paved with choices, opportunities, and challenges. It’s a journey that requires continuous learning, networking, and personal growth. Engineers make good money, but achieving financial success is not just about the paycheck; it’s about finding fulfillment and purpose in your work.

Whether you’re just starting your career or looking to take the next big step, focus on building a strong foundation through education, gaining diverse experience, and aligning yourself with mentors and professionals who can guide you.

Embrace the entrepreneurial spirit, explore side hustles, and don’t be afraid to negotiate for what you’re worth. Your success as an engineer is not just measured in dollars and cents; it’s about making a meaningful impact in the world and enjoying the journey along the way.

Segue to AdmissionSight

Because engineers have knowledge and abilities that are held by just a small percentage of the population, abilities that are not only uncommon but also incredibly helpful, there is intense competition among employers, both in the public and private sectors, to pay them well.

By considering AdmissionSight, you can increase your chances of getting into the engineering school of your choice. AdmissionSight is the most trusted name in the college admissions advising industry, with more than a decade of expertise assisting students just like you in gaining entry to the colleges of their first and second choices. Please get in touch with us as soon as possible to set up a complimentary introductory consultation.


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