The 7 highest-paying entry-level jobs

  • Entry-level jobs are open to recent graduates and don’t require a lot of experience in the industry. You can land one of these positions even if it’s your first job in the field. 
  • There are entry-level jobs in every industry. Some call for prior education. Others give you on-the-job training. 
  • Most entry-level jobs pay between $25,000 and $30,000 per year.

Typically, entry-level jobs don’t pay great. But in certain industries, your starting salary could be quite financially robust. Take a look at these highest-paying entry-level jobs and the education and skills you’ll need to get there.

1. Data Scientist

Average Annual Salary: $93,135

The average salary for an entry-level data scientist position is $93,135. This job draws heavily on computer science, math, and statistics. A data scientist helps a company strategize the next steps by analyzing data and industry trends.

While this is a hot job in the technology industry, you can work as a data scientist for companies in virtually any industry. Data scientists need a bachelor’s degree in computer science or statistics to succeed.

2. Registered Nurse 

Average Annual Salary: $61,728

The average entry-level salary for a nurse is $61,728. To get a job as a registered nurse, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree or at least an associate’s degree in nursing. Unlike other medical jobs, however, you don’t need any prior experience to land a job as an RN. Registered nurses can work in a hospital, doctor’s office, school, or for a home health company.

Nurses work closely with physicians to care for patients, assessing patient needs, and administering medication and other treatments.

3. Occupational Therapist

Average Annual Salary: $65,564

Entry-level occupational therapists make an entry-level salary of $65,564 according to ZipRecruiter. As an occupational therapist, you’ll work with patients who are injured or disabled to help them learn to do everyday activities. This might include helping patients find the easiest way to get dressed, eat, or drive.

Occupational therapy does require a decent amount of education: You need both a bachelor’s and master’s degree to be qualified. But once you’re done with the school, you’re set up to make a solid salary.

4. Web Developer

Average Annual Salary: $58,206

Are you creative, detail-oriented, and proficient in computers and other technology? You might make a good web developer — which is a field where even employees who are just starting out can make $58,206 per year. Web developers design and modify websites, writing code to create user interfaces.

An associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree in computer science or web design is most commonly accepted by employers. The more education and experience you have, the more money you’ll be able to make as a web developer over time.

5. HR Manager

Average Annual Salary: $52,393

Entry-level HR managers make an average of $52,393, a number that can go up to $75,000 or even higher as you continue advancing in the field. HR managers are in charge of recruiting, interviewing, and hiring new employees for their company.

You might make a good HR manager if you’re a strong communicator with analytical skills and the ability to pivot when needed. To land an entry-level HR position, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in human resources (or a related industry such as business management).

6. Veterinarian

Average Annual Salary: $48,024

Veterinarians make a lucrative yearly salary. Even if you’re new to the field, you can expect to earn almost $50,000 a year. Of course, that income is only available after several years in school — a four-year undergrad program, four years in veterinary school, and then the North American Veterinary Licensing Examination to qualify you to practice as a veterinarian in the States.

Some veterinarians work in local practices treating domestic pets. Others might work at a zoo, treat farm animals, or focus on a specific branch of medicine, such as veterinary ophthalmology.

7. Accountant 

Average Annual Salary: $46,508

As an accountant, you can earn $46,508 per year in an entry-level position. This type of job calls for a bachelor’s degree in accounting. Some employers will accept an associate’s degree instead.

As an accountant, you’ll help a company manage everything related to finances — creating reports, heading up payroll, handling taxes, and other related tasks. Accounting is a lucrative industry and a good career fit for anyone with a head for numbers.