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Plumbing & Water Supply Major

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Plumbing & Water Supply

$52,780 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Plumbing & Water Supply Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many plumbing and water supply graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Undergraduate Certificate 1,251
Basic Certificate 1,122
Associate’s Degree 233

What Plumbing & Water Supply Majors Need to Know

O*NET surveyed people in occupations related to plumbing and asked them what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. The responses were rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Plumbing Majors

Plumbing majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:

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  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Building and Construction - Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

Skills for Plumbing Majors

plumbing majors are found most commonly in careers in which the following skills are important:

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  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Abilities for Plumbing Majors

As you progress with your plumbing degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:

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  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Manual Dexterity - The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
  • Arm-Hand Steadiness - The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.

What Can You Do With a Plumbing & Water Supply Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with plumbing:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Derrick Operators, Oil and Gas 25.2% $46,120
Earth Drillers, Except Oil and Gas 19.9% $44,430
Explosives Workers, Ordnance Handling Experts, and Blasters 7.9% $49,860
First-Line Supervisors of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers 12.6% $65,230
Pipe Fitters and Steamfitters 15.6% $53,910
Plumbers 15.6% $53,910
Rotary Drill Operators, Oil and Gas 24.6% $53,800
Septic Tank Servicers and Sewer Pipe Cleaners 17.2% $38,970
Solar Energy Installation Managers 12.6% $65,230

How Much Do Plumbing & Water Supply Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

Average salaries range from $47,570 to $58,150 (25th to 75th percentile) for careers related to plumbing. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a Plumbing & Water Supply Major  ( 47570 to 58150 )
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Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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250K

Some careers associated with plumbing require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.

Find out what the typical degree level is for plumbing careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Less than a High School Diploma 19.7%
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 38.1%
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 27.1%
Some College Courses 11.1%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 2.7%
Bachelor’s Degree 1.4%
Master’s Degree 0.4%

Online Plumbing & Water Supply Programs

In the 2018-2019 academic year, 175 schools offered some type of plumbing and water supply program. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 103 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 109 1
Certificate (2-4 Years) 21 2
Associate’s Degree 43 0
Bachelor’s Degree 0 0
Post-Baccalaureate 103 0
Master’s Degree 0 0
Post-Master’s 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Plumbing & Water Supply Worth It?

The median salary for a plumbing grad is $52,780 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

This is 32% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $257,600 after 20 years!

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to plumbing.

Major Number of Grads
Electrical & Power Transmission Installers 21,360
Building Management & Inspection 4,950
Carpentry 4,066
Construction 2,292
Masonry 462
Other Construction 267

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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