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Entry-Level Nuclear Engineering

Basic statistics every nuclear engineer needs.

Statistics for Entry-Level Nuclear Engineering

There is a lot of information nuclear engineers need when they start looking for entry-level nuclear engineering jobs. The following are important statistics to understand when you start searching for your first entry-level nuclear engineering job.

What do Nuclear Engineers Do?

Nuclear engineers research and develop the processes, instruments, and systems used to derive benefits from nuclear energy and radiation.

Many of these engineers find industrial and medical uses for radioactive materials—for example, in equipment used in medical diagnosis and treatment.


Many others specialize in the development of nuclear power sources for ships or spacecraft.

How many Nuclear Engineers are there?

Currently there are 16,400 nuclear engineers working in the United States of America. This represents 1% of the total engineers working in the United States.

Number of Nuclear Engineers in the United States

Nuclear engineering is one of the smaller engineering disciplines. Having a small discipline means that finding jobs in that career field might be limited to only specific locations in the United States.

Are Advanced Degrees Required?

Most engineers struggle with the decision on pursuing an advanced degree. For entry-level engineering jobs, the more technical the job is, the higher the chance it will require an advanced degree.

To understand how many nuclear engineers go on to get advanced degrees, reference the table below.

Nuclear Engineering - Advanced Degrees

Based on the data, 66% (359/544) of nuclear engineering students go on to get a master’s degree and approximately 26% (142/544) pursue a doctoral degree in a given year. For a master’s degree and doctoral degree, this is above the engineering average.

Inside an engineering discipline, some jobs can require an advanced degree while others do not. The only true way to know if you will need an advanced degree for the entry-level nuclear engineering job you want, is to look at job postings.


If all of the jobs you are interested in require an advanced degree, it means you need to go and get one.

Due to the high number of students who purse a master’s degree in nuclear engineering, it is safe to assume that many of the nuclear engineering jobs will require you to have your master’s degree.

Entry-Level Nuclear Engineering Jobs Created

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the future job growth for each field of engineering.  Based on the data, there will be 2,100 jobs lost in Nuclear Engineering over the next 10-years. Nuclear engineering is the only engineering profession that is currently shrinking.

It can be assumed that the job growth is in entry-level jobs. This is due to the actual creation of entry-level jobs, or creation of higher-level jobs that are filled with the existing workforce opening up entry-level positions.

Entry-Level Nuclear Engineering Job Growth

Based on the new job growth as a percentage of the existing job market, the projected yearly growth is –12.8% for entry-level nuclear engineering jobs. The average growth rate for all entry-level engineering jobs is 4.1% per year.

Job growth for nuclear engineering is well below the job growth for engineering as a whole. Higher job growth in an industry is attractive because it equates to more opportunities in that field in the future.

Competition Index For Entry-Level
Nuclear Engineering Jobs

At the Job Formula, we like to calculate the competition index for different types of engineering jobs. To do this, we divide the total number of graduates in a discipline by the total number of jobs available in that discipline. This calculation shows how many graduates there are for each available job.

The lower the competition index the better. A competition index of one (1) means that there is one graduate for every one job.

The competition index for entry-level nuclear engineering jobs is 1.9. This is below the competition index for the average engineering discipline of 1.5. This means there is almost two nuclear engineering graduates for every one entry level job.

Competition for Entry-Level Nuclear Engineering Jobs

We calculate the competition index to give graduate engineers an idea of the type of competition they will face when they start looking for their first job.

Please note that competition will vary inside an engineering field based on the type of industry, the location and how attractive a job is.

Industries for Entry-Level Nuclear Engineers

Nuclear Engineering is a semi-diverse degree which means you can work in many different industries. The follow are the top five industries that hire nuclear engineers.

Nuclear Engineering Industries

The percent of total employment means out of all nuclear engineers, how many are working in that one industry.

If you are looking for an entry-level nuclear engineering job, these are the best industries to start with.

Entry-Level Nuclear Engineering Job Salary

The average entry-level nuclear engineering salary is shown below. Additionally, the average nuclear engineering salary, the bottom 10% and top 10% salaries are shown.

Entry-Level Nuclear Engineering Salary

Entry-level nuclear engineering salaries are above the industry average for entry-level salaries.

At Job Formula, we preach enjoying your job over seeking out a high salary. If you enjoy your job, you are more likely to move up in the position. The Top 10% of any engineering degree field is higher than the mean annual salary of the highest paying degree field. Find a job you like and try to move toward that top 10%.

Resources for Entry-Level Nuclear Engineers

The formula we have been taught since we were small children is just not true. Getting a college degree does not guarantee you a great job. If the formula worked, over 49% of college graduates would not report that they found it hard or extremely hard to find their first job.

Universities are failing engineering students because they are not training them on how to go from getting a degree to getting an entry-level engineering job.

The Job Formula will help you learn what you need to learn to get hired! See our free resources below to get started.

The Winning Entry-Level Engineering Resume

Job Formula's in-depth free guide to help engineers put together a winning engineering resume that gets results. Don’t let your resume be what holds you back from getting your dream job. Click on the link to download now.

Entry Level Engineering Resume Cover R1.

Entry-Level Engineering Blog

Job Formula’s engineering blog is dedicated to helping entry-level engineers get hired. On the blog, you will find articles on internships, cover letters, resumes, interviews and more, all geared toward engineers!

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Entry-Level Engineering

You just viewed the site dedicated to Entry-Level Nuclear Engineering. Check out this link to see information on all entry-level engineering jobs.

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We Need Your Help!

Job Formula is putting together a breakthrough program called How Engineers Get Hired – The Ultimate Course.


To make sure we do not forget anything, we put together a survey related to entry-level engineers. Please help us, we value your opinion.

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Now go get started on your amazing nuclear engineering career and change the world!

*The information on this page was pulled together from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and other various resources. The information is intended for education purposes only.