DOCTORATE, DEGREE OR DROPOUT
Exploring education and success through the lens of The Forbes 400. Plus: How billionaires paid for college.
HOW MUCH schooling do you need to succeed? If The Forbes 400 is any measure, just a bachelor’s degree. Most of the 400 got nothing more than an undergraduate degree (although 84% have a 4-year degree, compared with just 33% of American adults). America’s wealthiest are also far more likely to have graduated from a super-elite university. A full 23% of The Forbes 400 have an undergraduate degree from an Ivy League institution, a feat achieved by less than 0.8% of the U.S. class of 2015. Many of the 400 (Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg most famously) dropped out of college to start their careers. In all, there are 47 high school and college dropouts on this year’s rich list.