Careers

Graduates of our Violin Making & Repair program work for others and are often self-employed luthiers. Others go on to be shop owners of full service string instrument shops. They repair, restore, and build violins and cellos.


EMPLOYMENT OUTLOOK

Please keep in mind that the job classifications defined by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) do not match the highly specialized skills of graduates from NBSS. Therefore, it’s difficult to be specific when looking at wage and employment data.

The closest job classification the DOL uses is “Musical Instrument Repairers and Tuners,” which includes repair of percussion, stringed, reed, or wind instruments, often with a specialization in one area. The classification does not include repair and tuning of electronic instruments. This classification falls into the same category as our Piano Technician Career page.


SALARY AND WAGE DATA

According to O*NET, the average annual salary for musical instrument repairers was $35,660 as of 2015, and an average hourly rate of $17.14. Payscale reports that the median hourly wage in 2016 was $14.00. However, they also note that experience has a moderate effect on income. Additionally, Chron.com reports that the average income for a luthier as of 2013 is $52,000. Income for this occupation varies widely based on industry and location. The U.S. DOL reports the following:

Industries with the highest levels of employment for musical instrument repairers:

  • Sporting Goods, Hobby, and Musical Instrument Stores – Average annual salary: $38,330 | Average hourly wage: $18.43
  • Personal and Household Goods Repair and Maintenance– Average annual salary: $33,970 | Average hourly wage: $16.33
  • Other Miscellaneous Manufacturing– Average annual salary: $43,580 | Average hourly wage: $20.95
  • Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools– Average annual salary: $50,670 | Average hourly wage: $24.36
  • Elementary and Secondary Schools– Average annual salary: $46,700 | Average hourly wage: $22.45

Top paying industries for musical instrument repairers:

  • Performing Arts Companies – Average annual salary: $60,880 | Average hourly wage: $29.27
  • Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools– Average annual salary: $50,670 | Average hourly wage: $24.36
  • Elementary and Secondary Schools– Average annual salary: $46,700 | Average hourly wage: $22.45
  • Other Miscellaneous Manufacturing– Average annual salary: $43,580 | Average hourly wage: $20.95
  • Miscellaneous Durable Goods Wholesalers– Average annual salary: $42,480 | Average hourly wage: $20.42

Top paying states for musical instrument repairers:

  • Texas– Average annual salary: $39,840 | Average hourly wage: $19.15
  • California– Average annual salary: $41,700 | Average hourly wage: $20.05
  • Illinois– Average annual salary: $38,410 | Average hourly wage: $18.47
  • Florida– Average annual salary: $31,240 | Average hourly wage: $15.02
  • New York– Average annual salary: $40,070 | Average hourly wage: $19.27

For more information, visit the following resources:

View the School's gainful employment report for Violin Making & Repair here.

Note: Due to privacy concerns, on-time completion rates are withheld when fewer than ten students in a graduating class received Title IV, or "federal," financial aid during their enrollment at NBSS. Because our programs are small, this information may be withheld or appear low in any given year.

Typical earnings rates are based on the earnings of our graduates as reported to the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) by the Social Security Administration (SSA), and therefore may not be an accurate reflection of potential earnings in a given field.

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Questions? Contact Rob O'Dwyer, Director of Admissions, at 617-227-0155 x111 or admissions@nbss.edu.
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