Find Schools

Study Area & Zipcode

Design & Applied Arts

Find Schools Near

2021 Highest Paid Design & Applied Arts Graduates

19,137 Bachelor's Degrees
$31,649 Avg Salary
$28,898 Avg Student Debt

Finding the Best Design & Applied Arts School for You

Highest Paid Design & Applied Arts GraduatesDesign & Applied Arts is the #27 most popular major in the country with 19,137 bachelor's degrees awarded in 2018-2019. The design school you choose to invest your time and money in matters. To help you make the decision that is right for you, we've developed a number of major-specific rankings, including this list of the Highest Paid Design Graduates.

This year's Highest Paid Design & Applied Arts Graduates ranking analyzed 223 colleges that offered a bachelor's degree in design.

The numbers used in this ranking are early career salaries, which we define to be 10 years after 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.

Comparing Average Salaries of Design & Applied Arts Majors

After graduation, design and applied arts majors from schools in the United States earn an average salary of $31,649 per year. If salary is one of the most important things on your career list, you may be disappointed to hear that this is 20% less than the salary of a typical college graduate.

Average Salary for Design Graduates from Schools Nationwide  31,649
0K
63,200
National Average Salary for All College Grads (Regardless of Major)  39,802
0K
63,200

College Combat

In addition to College Factual's rankings, you may want to take a look at College Combat, our unique tool that lets you pit your favorite schools head-to-head and compare how they rate on factors that most interest you. Test it out when you get a chance! You may also want to bookmark the link and share it with others who are trying to make the college decision.

2021 Highest Paid Design & Applied Arts Grads in the United States

Below you'll see a list of the colleges and universities that produce the highest paid design and applied arts majors.

Top 25 Best Schools for Highly Paid Design Graduates

#1

Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA

Our rankings recognize Carnegie Mellon University as the #1 school in this year's rankings. Carnegie Mellon is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Pittsburgh. Design majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $87,900.

After completing their bachelor's degree, design graduates from Carnegie Mellon carry an average student debtload of $20,204. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $239.

Full Design & Applied Arts at Carnegie Mellon University Report

Request Information

University of Washington - Seattle Campus landed the #2 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid design and applied arts school. UW Seattle is a fairly large public school located in the city of Seattle. Design majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $54,100.

While working on their bachelor's, design majors at UW Seattle accumulate an average of around $18,270 in student debt. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $203.

Read full report on Design & Applied Arts at University of Washington - Seattle Campus

Request Information

The #3 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network. Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Boston. Design majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $54,100.

After completing their bachelor's degree, design graduates from Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network carry an average student debtload of $25,534. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $301, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

Request Information

The #4 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Northeastern University. Northeastern is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Boston. Design majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $54,100.

While working on their bachelor's, design majors at Northeastern accumulate an average of around $25,534 in student debt. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $301, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

Request Information

San Jose State University comes in at #5 in this year's ranking. Located in the city of San Jose, San Jose State is a public college with a fairly large student population. Design majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $53,400.

After completing their bachelor's degree, design graduates from San Jose State carry an average student debtload of $23,060. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $235.

Read More…

Request Information

Art Center College of Design landed the #6 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid design and applied arts school. Art Center College of Design is a small private not-for-profit school located in the city of Pasadena. Design majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $49,900.

On average, design graduates from Art Center College of Design take out $33,686 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $322, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

Request Information

Our rankings recognize Lawrence Technological University as the #7 school in this year's rankings. Lawrence Tech is a small private not-for-profit school located in the city of Southfield. Students who receive their bachelor's in design from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $48,900.

After completing their bachelor's degree, design graduates from Lawrence Tech carry an average student debtload of $25,594. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $280.

Full Design & Applied Arts at Lawrence Technological University Report

Request Information

Our rankings recognize Wentworth Institute of Technology as the #8 school in this year's rankings. WIT is a small private not-for-profit school located in the city of Boston. Students who receive their bachelor's in design from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $48,800.

While working on their bachelor's, design majors at WIT accumulate an average of around $25,229 in student debt. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $280.

Read More…

Request Information
#8

Texas Tech University

Lubbock, TX

Texas Tech University landed the #8 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid design and applied arts school. Located in the city of Lubbock, Texas Tech is a public college with a very large student population.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at Texas Tech take out while working on their bachelor's is $26,390.

Full Design & Applied Arts at Texas Tech University Report

Request Information
#9

Chapman University

Orange, CA

The #9 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Chapman University. Chapman is a moderately-sized private not-for-profit school located in the midsize city of Orange. Upon graduating with a bachelor's degree, design majors make an average salary of $48,600.

On average, design graduates from Chapman take out $21,000 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 $207.

Read More…

Request Information

Georgia Institute of Technology - Main Campus comes in at #10 in this year's ranking. Georgia Tech is a very large public school located in the large city of Atlanta. Students who receive their bachelor's in design from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $47,500.

While working on their bachelor's, design majors at Georgia Tech accumulate an average of around $23,538 in student debt. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $279.

Full Design & Applied Arts at Georgia Institute of Technology - Main Campus Report

Request Information

Lake Washington Institute of Technology landed the #11 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid design and applied arts school. Located in the suburb of Kirkland, LWTech is a public school with a small student population. Students who receive their bachelor's in design from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $46,300.

Design majors at LWTech take out an average of $27,908 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree.

Read More…

Request Information

Our rankings recognize University of Wisconsin - Madison as the #12 school in this year's rankings. Located in the city of Madison, Wisconsin is a public school with a very large student population. Students who receive their bachelor's in design from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $45,600.

While working on their bachelor's, design majors at Wisconsin accumulate an average of around $21,864 in student debt. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $241, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Full Design & Applied Arts at University of Wisconsin - Madison Report

Request Information
#13

Texas Christian University

Fort Worth, TX

Texas Christian University earned the #13 spot in our 2021 rankings. TCU is a large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Fort Worth. Students who receive their bachelor's in design from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $45,100.

On average, design graduates from TCU take out $22,370 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $213.

Full Design & Applied Arts at Texas Christian University Report

Request Information

Washington University in St Louis landed the #13 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid design and applied arts school. WUSTL is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Saint Louis.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at WUSTL take out while working on their bachelor's is $16,472. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $197.

Full Design & Applied Arts at Washington University in St Louis Report

Request Information
#14

University of Florida

Gainesville, FL

University of Florida earned the #14 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the medium-sized city of Gainesville, U of F is a public college with a very large student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in design from the school is $44,900.

After completing their bachelor's degree, design graduates from U of F carry an average student debtload of $19,540. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $171, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

Full Design & Applied Arts at University of Florida Report

Request Information
#15

University of Delaware

Newark, DE

University of Delaware landed the #15 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid design and applied arts school. Located in the suburb of Newark, U of Delaware is a public school with a fairly large student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in design from the school is $44,900.

After completing their bachelor's degree, design graduates from U of Delaware carry an average student debtload of $22,152. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $254, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

Request Information
#16

Virginia Tech

Blacksburg, VA

The #16 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Virginia Tech. Virginia Tech is a fairly large public school located in the small city of Blacksburg. Design majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $44,600.

After completing their bachelor's degree, design graduates from Virginia Tech carry an average student debtload of $24,129. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $280.

Read full report on Design & Applied Arts at Virginia Tech

Request Information

The University of Texas at Austin comes in at #17 in this year's ranking. Located in the large city of Austin, UT Austin is a public school with a very large student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in design from the school is $44,400.

On average, design graduates from UT Austin take out $23,321 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $268, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

Request Information

University of Cincinnati - Main Campus earned the #18 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the city of Cincinnati, Cincinnati is a public college with a very large student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in design from the school is $44,300.

While working on their bachelor's, design majors at Cincinnati accumulate an average of around $25,372 in student debt. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $277, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Full Design & Applied Arts at University of Cincinnati - Main Campus Report

Request Information
#19

George Washington University

Washington, DC

Our rankings recognize George Washington University as the #19 school in this year's rankings. GWU is a very large private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Washington. Students who receive their bachelor's in design from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $43,900.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at GWU take out while working on their bachelor's is $28,377. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $280.

Read More…

Request Information
#20

Drexel University

Philadelphia, PA

Drexel University earned the #20 spot in our 2021 rankings. Drexel is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Philadelphia. Students who receive their bachelor's in design from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $43,500.

While working on their bachelor's, design majors at Drexel accumulate an average of around $23,273 in student debt. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $275, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

Request Information
#20

University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame, IN

Our rankings recognize University of Notre Dame as the #20 school in this year's rankings. Located in the suburb of Notre Dame, Notre Dame is a private not-for-profit school with a large student population.

While working on their bachelor's, design majors at Notre Dame accumulate an average of around $19,187 in student debt. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $197.

Full Design & Applied Arts at University of Notre Dame Report

Request Information
#21

Lehigh University

Bethlehem, PA

Our rankings recognize Lehigh University as the #21 school in this year's rankings. Located in the city of Bethlehem, Lehigh is a private not-for-profit college with a moderately-sized student population.

Full Design & Applied Arts at Lehigh University Report

Request Information
#21

Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL

Florida State University earned the #21 spot in our 2021 rankings. Florida State is a very large public school located in the midsize city of Tallahassee. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in design from the school is $43,400.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at Florida State take out while working on their bachelor's is $18,795. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $187.

Read More…

Request Information

Rest of the Top Schools for Highest Paid Design & Applied Arts Graduates

#26

University of San Francisco

San Francisco, CA
#27

Clemson University

Clemson, SC
#29

University of Kentucky

Lexington, KY
#31

Marist College

Poughkeepsie, NY
#38

American University

Washington, DC

Additional Noteworthy Schools

Here are some additional great schools for Design students seeking high pay that almost earned our Highest Paid Design & Applied Arts Graduates award.

Rank College Location
34 Bellevue University Bellevue, NE
35 SUNY New Paltz New Paltz, NY
36 Suffolk University Boston, MA
37 Temple University Philadelphia, PA
38 College for Creative Studies Detroit, MI
39 Boston University Boston, MA
40 Arizona State University - Tempe Tempe, AZ
41 North Carolina State University Raleigh, NC
41 University of Denver Denver, CO
42 University of Houston Houston, TX
43 Western Washington University Bellingham, WA
44 Maryville University of Saint Louis Saint Louis, MO

Design & Applied Arts by Region

View the Highest Paid Design & Applied Arts Graduates for a specific region near you.

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

One of 9 majors within the Visual & Performing Arts area of study, Design & Applied Arts has other similar majors worth exploring.

Majors Similar to Design

Related Major Annual Graduates
Fine & Studio Arts 25,815
Music 15,747
Drama & Theater Arts 12,791
Film, Video & Photographic Arts 11,308
General Visual & Performing Arts 3,315

View All Design 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).

More about our data sources and methodologies.

Featured Schools

Find Schools Near You