Is the cost of this degree worth the salary it leads to?

After graduation, public policy graduates typically earn high salaries compared to the national average. Top earners make $132,817, while the bottom 20% make closer to $30,391. The median grad salary is $63,533.

Public Policy graduate salaries over time

The typical early career salary for someone with a bachelor’s degree in public policy is $43,897, and within five years of graduation, this average salary goes up to $75,644.

This chart maps the average workforce wage by years of experience:

Wage ($USD)

Wage Range Median Wage

Years of work experience

Highest paying jobs for public policy graduates

The highest paying careers for public policy graduates are political scientist, urban planner and lobbyist, with top salaries averaging around $99,065.

Highest Paying Careers

Avg Pay (USD)

As per most recent US census

Pro tip
Still unsure if a degree in public policy is your calling? Read our comprehensive guide on choosing a career


Discover what you’ll learn—and what you can do after you graduate.

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