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Top Students after Graduation

  1. Oct 6, 2009 #1
    I'm finding it quite hard to figure out how graduate salaries differ with university grades or other similar university level achievements. All the surveys of graduate salaries seem to just give an average salary.
    For some context I'm studying 2nd yr Mechtranics/Physics combined degree in Aus and wish to work in engineering for a bit (money of course :tongue2:) after I graduate. The companies with graduate programs don't seem to distinguish between students as long as they get into the program.
    I'm not the best student at uni but I am near the top and I will/have participated in extra research and that kind of thing.

    Can anyone help out as to whether salaries/conditions change for better graduates and in what conditions?

    The reason I want to figure this out is that I'm considering a defence force sponsorship scheme which is really attractive and offers around AU$75,000 p.a. on graduation. This is a bit higher than the average graduate salary but I have to commit to it within a year.
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 6, 2009 #2


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    Most companies don't differentiate salary based on academic performance. They care about whether or not you're qualified to do the job they have, and how well you will do it. There isn't necessarily a correlation between marks and job performance.

    If you have an above average academic history, you can use that to your advantage when negotiating salary, benefits etc. Just be prepared to answer questions like this:
    "You don't have any experience. Why should I pay you any more than anyone else just out of school?"
  4. Oct 6, 2009 #3
    Right. Companies most often have standard set salaries for new hires depending on the position. Either you get the job or you don't, and the salary isn't usually up for debate. As for where that specific salary falls on the scale... I couldn't tell you. Move to the US and I can give some better advice :smile:.

    Your performance and other traits determine whether you get the offer and not so much what your offer will be. Of course, some offers are more desirable than others.
  5. Oct 6, 2009 #4
    I do not know of any companies that care what your class ranking is, although I suppose it is possible. That being said, the qualities that contribute to being near the top of one's class will also tend to contribute to being paid more over time. General intellectual ability and conscientiousness are both useful traits for getting good marks and increasing your compensation.

    Simply put, employers want you to know your stuff *and* to be hard worker. Thus, one sees a correlation between these two things and rates of pay within career fields, but not necessarily between marks and rates of pay, because there are other things that go into marks that do not necessarily apply to the world of work, and vice versa.
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