Lamar University’s College of Engineering in Beaumont works hard to ensure that engineering graduates walk away with an invaluable college experience and the best return on investment. This commitment has landed the college in the #1 spot in Texas and #3 in the nation for 20-year net income of graduates, as noted by PayScale.com.
That online salary information company annually measures the return on tuition investment 20 years after graduation for hundreds of public and private institutions. Its report also analyzes in-state and out-of-state tuition costs, graduation rates and the number of years it takes to earn a degree.
According to the 2021 report, the 20-year net income of engineering graduates from Lamar University is $1,223,000 — the highest in the state of Texas and third highest in the nation. With the new rankings, according to PayScale.com, LU surpasses larger institutions in the country, such as Stanford University ($1,068,000), Rice University ($1,057,000), and Massachusetts Institute of Technology ($1,170,000) in 20-year net income.
“Although we’re competing with larger institutions and individuals from larger institutions, LU engineering graduates still get the same job opportunities, if not better.”
— LU graduate Josh Wilson
The estimated cost of a four-year degree at Lamar University is $89,000, about one-third of the cost of MIT ($276,000), Stanford University ($282,000) and Rice University ($256,000), PayScale.com reports.
“It is incredible that Lamar University engineering graduates outperform those from schools such as MIT and Stanford, considering many of our students are first-generation college students,” said Lamar University President Dr. Jaime Taylor. “This speaks to the quality of education our College of Engineering provides and the support Lamar University faculty and staff provide to our students.”
With multiple degrees across five departments ranging from bachelor's degrees to PhDs, the College of Engineering continually aims to provide graduates with a clear path to steady employment and a solid income. “We provide smaller class sizes and innovative curriculum, and our courses are taught by extremely talented and dedicated faculty. We pride ourselves in graduating job-ready engineers and this is confirmed by the numerous employers that consider Lamar University’s College of Engineering when looking for top recruits,” said Dr. Brian Craig, the college’s dean.
LU alumnus Josh Wilson knew he was destined to attend Lamar University as a chemical engineering major. His father and older brother also attended LU as chemical engineering majors and, as a third generation Cardinal, he said the value of his engineering degree has been unmatched.
“The LU engineering program is so well respected in the Golden Triangle area and is recognized across the state and across the country. Although we’re competing with larger institutions and individuals from larger institutions, LU engineering graduates still get the same job opportunities, if not better,” said Wilson.
Wilson currently works as a senior production engineer at multinational chemical corporation Dow Chemicals. He landed a job with the company just months before graduating and said because of his experience in the College of Engineering, he was able to quickly transition into his role upon graduating.
“We have huge companies like ExxonMobil, Motiva, Dow Chemicals and so many others that come in to provide us with those networking opportunities, mentorships and internships, which gives us a huge advantage,” he said. “I would tell any future Cardinals that an engineering degree from Lamar University is well worth it.”