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Why Facebook Interns Make More Than The Average Intern

Janine Eccleston

According to recent rankings of the top 50 employers by career site Glassdoor, Facebook is the best company in the world to work for. After looking at the lowest salaries at each company, it is easy to see why Facebook takes the top spot.

Interns Earn How Much?
According to the stats, Facebook is paying the average intern approximately $5,600 a month. This adds up to just over $67,000 per year, which ranks above what the average American is earning. According to Social Security, The Official Website of U.S. Social Security Administration, in 2011 the average individual's earnings were $42,979 per year, which was 3.1% higher than in 2010. This means that Facebook interns are making approximately $25,000 more than the average American. This is especially interesting considering that some interns, such as the ones at fashion magazines, typically are not paid anything.

Not only do Facebook interns earn a better starting salary than the average American, some are also given a $1,000 housing stipend to relocate to the Silicon Valley.

Why so Lucrative?
So how do these interns earn such large sums of money? For starters, most are in the software engineering field. The average software engineer at Facebook makes about $100,000 per year. Conversely, the average software engineer at other U.S. companies makes $93,000 per year. This means that Facebook's software engineers are earning an average of $7,000 more per year. Fast-paced, high-growth companies want to get their hands on emerging talent, which is why they'll pay top dollar for interns and entry-level staff.

What makes these software engineers so valuable is their ability to quickly adapt, read code, debug online technology and design software. All of these traits along with their ability to adapt to ever-changing technology makes computer science graduates valuable to companies.

Other Highly Paid Interns
While Facebook tops the list of the best companies to work for, many other leading technology companies are also on the list and offer similar salaries for their interns. Google pays its interns about $6,400 a month, while Amazon pays about $5,500 per month. If salary is a big motivator for you, software engineering is a good profession to pursue. When you compare software engineers to other business positions, you will see that the former are often paid better than the latter. The accounting profession is often comparable but not quite as highly paid. Tax interns at large accounting firms can make just over $4,000 a month, while audit interns earn about $3,800 and business analyst interns typically earn about $2,700 a month.

The Bottom Line
Many undergraduates are unsure what degree would be best for them to pursue. By considering the current and future pay scales of various prospective careers, students may lean toward a degree that'll prepare them for a career that pays more. If you are thinking of pursuing a software engineering degree, one of the larger technology companies is definitely an avenue to consider for an internship or job as a new graduate.

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