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If you’re preparing to pass your SPI exam with Ultrasonic Education, you should consider heading to Northern California once you’ve passed. The top 12 highest paying cities for diagnostic medical sonographers are all located in The Bay Area or farther north. With over 2,200 sonographers working in this region, Nor Cal seems like the place to be if you’re in the sonography business.

Where’s Vallejo?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers compiled in May of 2015 the city with the highest paid sonographers in the US is Vallejo, California. Sonographers in Vallejo are averaging $117,060 yearly. While the data also shows that the average entry-level salary in Vallejo is considerably lower than most places, approximately $40,000, stats indicate that Vallejo has the highest ceiling for a payday.

Nor Cal is King!

The report goes on to show that Nor Cal cities dominate the pay scale for sonographers. The next highest paying metro area is the tri-city combo of San Jose, Sunnyvale and Santa Clara coming in at $114,770 per year, just $2,290 less than Vallejo. However, research shows that the entry level yearly salary in this metro area is closer to $85,000. A substantial $45,000 higher for those entering the workforce here, than in Vallejo.

Five other Nor Cal metro areas produce statistics showing the average salary of sonographers to be over $100,000 annually: San Francisco/San Mateo/Redwood City ($114,190), Santa Cruz/Watsonville ($112,750), San Francisco/Oakland/Fremont ($110,410), Oakland/Fremont/Hayward ($107,770), Santa Rosa/Petaluma ($107,460).

The next 5 spots down to the #12 in the study are also held by Northern California cities. At #13, Bellingham, Washington breaks the trend with its yearly average salary for sonographers coming in at $88,370.

California…Here I Come?

So, once you have passed your SPI examination, with the help of Ultrasonic Education and spiexam.com, wherever you are in the world, consider packing your bags and heading to Northern California!