The median income for members of the National Society of Professional Engineers in the metropolitan area rose by $2,000 over the past year, placing Washington ninth in the country and above the national median for engineer salaries, according to a survey released recently by the group.

The NSPE "Professional Engineer Income and Salary Survey" found that nuclear engineers in Washington earned the most, with a median salary of $57,150; next in line were electrical and electronics engineers, whose median income was $54,900. Nationally, the median income for these two disciplines was $57,000 and $47,000, respectively.

The study found that research organizations in the city paid the highest salaries, with a median of $60,500 (the national figure is $50,400). Engineers employed by transportation services received the second-highest salaries, with a median of $56,608 ($49,288 is the national median). Engineers for the federal government showed a median salary of $50,000 (nationally, the median was $42,548). In contrast, engineers employed by the D.C. government earned a median salary of $43,021 ($55,000 national median), according to the survey.

The survey found that, on the whole, the outlook for the engineering profession in the United States is very healthy. Not only did increases in engineer salaries across the country outpace the Consumer Price Index for the third year in a row -- the CPI rose 3.6 percent and the median income for engineers rose 6.4 percent between 1984 and 1985, the survey said -- but engineering staffs also have increased. Survey respondents predict that the profession will continue to see increased hiring over the next few years.

An association spokesman said that the survey results were representative of the society's membership, which tends to be registered engineers who are in the higher echelons of the field. The group said 610 out of a total membership of 3,100 members in the metropolitan area responded to the survey. TRADE

The Food Marketing Institute has hired Oscar Katov, a former public relations consultant and newspaper editor from the Chicago area, as head of media relations. The 1,500-member research group represents food wholesalers and distributors. Katov will be responsible for all broadcast and print relations as well as conference coordination. He also will run the institute's video newsletter pilot project. If approved by the board of directors, the 15-minute video newsletter will be made available free to all FMI members.

FMI also has launched a meat-nutrition information project for supermarket meat counters. The Meat Nutri-Facts program was developed by FMI in conjuction with the American Meat Institute and the National Live Stock and Meat Board after a three-month trial period. The program will provide retailers with up-to-date information to give customers about beef, lamb and pork, including calorie and vitamin content, inspection and grading procedures and cooking suggestions. PROFESSIONAL

K. Martin Worthy, a tax lawyer and partner in the Washington law firm of Hamel & Park, has been elected chairman of the American College of Tax Counsel. The college provides legal education seminars and publishes the American Journal of Tax Policy. Membership is by invitation only and limited to 5 percent of the members of the tax bar in each of the federal judicial circuits. Worthy has served, by presidential appointment, as chief counsel for the internal Revenue Service and assistant general counsel of the American Bar Association's taxation section.

The National Association of Insurance Brokers has elected Robert H. Moore, corporate vice president of Alexander & Alexander Services Inc., as its president. -- Diane Landis