Fresh explore casts light on the career outcomes of fresh doctorates

It is well known that the number of PhD holders is enlargening every year, but what is not so well known is the career path they choose. How many of them proceed to be a part of academia and how many join the industry, and how much they earn, has remained unclear. To throw light on this, Nikolas Zolas of the U.S. Census Bureau and his co-authors conducted an analysis on the earnings of PhD students from various fields. Their examine is part of the UMETRICS project that “links anonymized census data on employment and income to student information from a consortium of universities in and around the Midwestern United States.”

The investigate included 3000 US PhD students who graduated inbetween 2009 and 2011 from eight universities. According to the team, those who stayed in academia earned lesser than those who took up jobs in industry. Some of the highlights of the explore are as goes after:

  • Of the 40% students who joined industry, doctorates in mathematics, computer sciences, and engineering earned the most, i.e., an average of US$65,000 a year.
  • Only 26% of biology graduates opted for industry jobs. However, biology postdocs earn the least, around $36,000 per year.
  • Industry graduates tended to end up at large firms, which paid an average salary of more than $90,000.    
  • The government absorbed Four.1% of the doctorates.

The explore led by economists Julia Lane at Fresh York University and Bruce Weinberg of Ohio State University in Columbus offers interesting insights into the career outcomes of doctorates. Suzanne Ortega, President of the Council of Graduate Schools in Washington DC, says, “That the report suggests that doctoral recipients work in establishments associated with high productivity illustrates how doctoral education very likely contributes to economic growth and job creation.” There is a clear distinction in the revenue earned by doctorates based on their disciplines. Commenting on the extravagant salaries some fields garner, scientific labor force expert Hal Salzman of Rutgers University, Fresh Jersey, elucidates, “Even in universities, embarking salaries for those folks should be more than $65,000, so that suggests [that] a lot are in research, non-tenure track positions.”

While Lane and Weinberg clarify that the probe is based on a petite sample of doctorates and does not intend to provide any generalized inferences, the investigate succeeds in providing a clearer picture of the prospects the various fields provide and how some fields are more attractive to industry than others.   


Biologists lose out in post-PhD earnings analysis (Accessed December 13, 2015)

Fresh Ph.D. incomes ‘surprisingly’ low (Accessed December 13, 2015) 

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