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Schools Where Majors Popular With Black Students Pay Best

Using newly available data from the Department of Education, the Washington Monthly has compiled a list of the schools where majors popular with Black students pay best for recent college graduates. Institutions are ordered by first-year median income. Asterisks indicate public colleges.

Here’s more information about these lists, and here’s the rest of our rankings.

Social Work Programs

Name% BlackMedian earnings out of college
University of Alabama (AL)*35.4% $33,900
Georgia State University (GA)*61.9% $32,700
University of MD–Baltimore County (MD)*25.5% $32,700
West Chester University (PA)*23.3% $32,000
Temple University (PA)*35.4% $31,900
Univ. of North Carolina–Charlotte (NC)*32.1% $31,900
Rutgers University–Newark (NJ)*48.6% $31,700
East Carolina University (NC)*32.2% $31,400

22% of social work graduates nationwide are Black. For social work programs with over 50 graduates in the last two years, the median first-year earnings are $31,081.

Criminal Justice Programs

Name% BlackMedian earnings out of college
Texas Christian University (TX)22.8%$40,000
Lynn University (FL)23.4%$38,900
La Salle University (PA)24.2%$34,600
University of Louisville (KY)*22.1%$34,600

20% of criminal justice graduates nationwide are Black. For criminal justice programs with over 50 graduates in the last two years, the median first-year earnings are $33,958.

Sociology Programs

Name% BlackMedian earnings out of college
Columbia Univ. in the City of NY (NY)20.0%$43,800
Dartmouth College (NH)26.6%$41,800
Cornell University (NY)19.5%$38,100
Duke University (NC)26.3%$37,300
Georgetown University (DC)29.1%$37,100
Michigan State University (MI)*19.6%$37,100
University of Houston (TX)*31.2%$37,100
Wake Forest University (NC)28.8%$36,700
University of Notre Dame (IN)22.4%$36,500
Emory University (GA)21.2%$35,600

18.6% of sociology graduates nationwide are Black. For sociology programs with over 50 graduates in the last two years, the median first-year earnings are $30,186.

NOTE: To make this list, each individual school’s program had to meet the following criteria:

1. It must have graduated at least 50 students over the last two years.

2. It must have a median first-year income that exceeds the median first-year income among its peers (other schools with the same program where the program also graduated at least 50 students over the last two years).

3. The percentage of Black graduates must exceed the nationwide average for the major.

4. The program’s school’s first-time, full-time undergraduate Black graduation rate needed to equal or exceed 50 percent.

5. The program’s school needed to graduate 25 or more first-time, full-time Black students.

For more information on the methodology, please see the list’s introduction.