Which careers have the most earning potential for social work graduates?

After graduation, social work graduates typically earn high salaries compared to the national average. Top earners make $53,862, while the bottom 20% make closer to $28,867. The median grad salary is $39,432.

Social Work graduate salaries over time

The typical early career salary for someone with a bachelor’s degree in social work is $26,853, and within five years of graduation, this average salary goes up to $30,486.

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 social work graduates

The highest paying careers for social work graduates are healthcare social worker, social worker, substance abuse social worker and family social worker, with top salaries averaging around $53,230.

Highest Paying Careers

Avg Pay (USD)

As per most recent US census

Pro tip
Still unsure if a degree in social work 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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