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Average journalism major starting salary is...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by boundforboston, Jan 28, 2013.

  1. PEteacher

    PEteacher Member

    It is funny that you are laughing at me for saying that someone who completes a 4-year college degree should expect to earn more than a very modest amount of money.

    I started out making $47,000 to cover high school sports and help out with the "big sports", while many of my friends were starting out at over $60K, $70K or more. Some of my engineering friends started out at over $100K. They gave me a hard time for accepting such a low-paying job.

    I would not have accepted a job that pays $40,900, and I don't think it's unreasonable for someone who invests 4+ years and over $100,000 into an education to expect to earn more than that.
  2. Your experience is an outlier.
  3. Drip

    Drip Active Member

    I'm curious where is this paper? You don't have to name it, just the area of the country will do, and what did you bring to the table to merit such a lofty salary fresh out of college?
  4. ColdCat

    ColdCat Well-Known Member

    Look, wherever this paper is that's paying you $47k, put in a good word for me. I just hope you realize that is far, far more than most of your fellow sports writers will ever see.
    And saying you would have turned up your nose at $40,900? Well, try walking into just about any job interview in this business and telling the editor you aren't jumping at anything less than $45k, they laugh you out of the building. If you turn down what you consider a very modest salary, there are hundreds of other applicants who will say yes, and companies all know it.
    Yes, it's pretty well established that people in other lines of work make more money (especially engineers) but you go into this business knowing you'll never be rich. It's part of the deal when you sign up.
    and PS, your friends were dicks if they were actually giving you a hard time about your salary
  5. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    Only a few of my friends in any industry made more than $50,000 starting out.
  6. ColdCat

    ColdCat Well-Known Member

    I think only one of my friends was at $50k starting out and he was in IT

    When I was a broadcasting major in college a lot of people in my classes thought they'd be making that and more starting out. I know my English department had it but every college department should have a required class telling students these are the jobs you might get after graduation and here's what each one pays. My classmates who thought that immediately after graduation they could be the main anchor of the CBS Evening News and make a couple mill could have changed majors right then and there.
  7. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    My guess?
    Naked bondage pictures of the publisher.

    And in case you think you're the rule and not the exception, PEteacher, most entry level reporting jobs pay about half of that $47,000 number. The only places I can think of that would pay $47K to a preps writer straight out of college are ... well, I can't think of any. Maybe a couple of the bigger New York papers, but the cost of living would offset that and 99.9 percent of recent J-school grads ain't landing that job regardless.
  8. PEteacher

    PEteacher Member

    I started out in the NY/NJ metro area, and a teach and coach in the suburbs now. When I was in college, I had internships with several major metro papers. I was also part of a minority journalist organization and met a lot of recruiters (back when that position still existed) at various conventions.

    My experience may or may not have been the norm, but I know it is not outrageous for me to refuse a $40,900 a year salary after 4 years of college, especially with the hours I worked as a sports writer. If more sports writers have my mentality of refusing to work for lowball wages, then newspapers will have no choice but to increase their offers, and all of us will be making more money. And there would be no sports editor laughing anyone out of any interview room for refusing a ridiculously low $40,900 offer.
  9. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    If only it worked like that.
  10. Tom Petty

    Tom Petty New Member

    wow. i really want to hit the like button for pe, but damn, dude really doesn't have a clue of what the bigger picture actually is, does he?
  11. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    It doesn't take long for this false dichotomy to rear its head on this site, does it?

    There is an enormous gulf between "rich" and "living wage."

    If I had it to do over again, I'd basically walk if I were offered anything less than $35K-$40K to begin my full-time career. Sayonara.
  12. If only everyone could be a minority.
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