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2021 Highest Paid Public Policy Graduates

2,308 Bachelor's Degrees
$41,244 Avg Salary
$20,109 Avg Student Debt

Finding the Best Public Policy School for You

Highest Paid Public Policy GraduatesOut of the 338 majors we analyze each year, public policy was ranked #126. In fact, 2,308 bachelor's degrees were handed out in 2018-2019. Since picking the right college can be one of the most important decisions of your life, we've developed the Highest Paid Public Policy Graduates ranking, along with many other major-related rankings, to help you make that decision.

This year's Highest Paid Public Policy Graduates ranking looked at 15 colleges that offer a bachelor's in public policy.

In this ranking, we use early career salaries - salaries 10 years from when a student started college. This is the salary typically earned 4-6 years after graduation, but may be different depending on how long a person takes to complete their degree.

How Much Do Public Policy Majors Make After Graduation?

The average public policy major who graduates from a school in the United States earns about $41,244 per year during the early years of their career. That's about the same as the average college graduate from any field makes.

Average Salary for Public Policy Graduates from Schools Nationwide  41,244
0K
82,400
National Average Salary for All College Grads (Regardless of Major)  39,802
0K
82,400

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2021 Highest Paid Public Policy Grads in the United States

The following colleges produce the highest paid public policy graduates.

Top 10 Best Schools for Highly Paid Public Policy Graduates

#1

Princeton University

Princeton, NJ

Our rankings recognize Princeton University as the #1 school in this year's rankings. Located in the city of Princeton, Princeton is a private not-for-profit college with a moderately-sized student population. Upon graduating with a bachelor's degree, public policy majors make an average salary of $63,100.

After completing their bachelor's degree, public policy graduates from Princeton carry an average student debtload of $10,679.

Full Public Policy at Princeton University Report

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#2

Duke University

Durham, NC

Duke University landed the #2 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid public policy school. Duke is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Durham. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in public policy from the school is $59,300.

While working on their bachelor's, public policy majors at Duke accumulate an average of around $12,374 in student debt. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $101.

Full Public Policy at Duke University Report

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#3

Cornell University

Ithaca, NY

Cornell University earned the #3 spot in our 2021 rankings. Cornell is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the small city of Ithaca. Public Policy majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $55,500.

On average, public policy graduates from Cornell take out $13,884 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $140.

Full Public Policy at Cornell University Report

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#3

University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA

University of Pennsylvania comes in at #3 in this year's ranking. UPenn is a very large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Philadelphia.

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#4

University of Chicago

Chicago, IL

Our rankings recognize University of Chicago as the #4 school in this year's rankings. Located in the large city of Chicago, UChicago is a private not-for-profit college with a large student population. Students who receive their bachelor's in public policy from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $51,800.

After completing their bachelor's degree, public policy graduates from UChicago carry an average student debtload of $17,508. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $182, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

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#4

Stanford University

Stanford, CA

Our rankings recognize Stanford University as the #4 school in this year's rankings. Located in the large suburb of Stanford, Stanford is a private not-for-profit college with a fairly large student population.

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The #5 spot in this year's ranking belongs to University of Michigan - Ann Arbor. Located in the midsize city of Ann Arbor, U of Michigan is a public college with a very large student population. Students who receive their bachelor's in public policy from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $50,100.

Public Policy majors at U of Michigan take out an average of $14,266 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $130.

Full Public Policy at University of Michigan - Ann Arbor Report

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#5

Brown University

Providence, RI

The #5 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Brown University. Located in the midsize city of Providence, Brown is a private not-for-profit school with a large student population.

On average, public policy graduates from Brown take out $12,626 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree.

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University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill earned the #6 spot in our 2021 rankings. UNC Chapel Hill is a fairly large public school located in the small city of Chapel Hill. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in public policy from the school is $38,500.

After completing their bachelor's degree, public policy graduates from UNC Chapel Hill carry an average student debtload of $16,879. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $185.

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#7

Vanderbilt University

Nashville, TN

Our rankings recognize Vanderbilt University as the #7 school in this year's rankings. Vanderbilt is a large private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Nashville.

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Public Policy by Region

View the Highest Paid Public Policy Graduates for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

Public Policy is one of 5 different types of Public Administration & Social Service programs to choose from.

Related Major Annual Graduates
Social Work 22,681
Human Services 6,503
Public Administration 3,195
Community Organization & Advocacy 1,625
Other Public Administration 327

View All Public Policy Related Majors >

Notes and References

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to The Official CTBTO Photostream.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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