7 Famous People Who Dropped Out Of College & Became Successful AF

 Who says college dropouts can't rule the world?

By Sharon Lynn Pruitt

Think you need to graduate from college to become successful in life? Not necessarily. Though most of us are taught that college is the only way to go, higher education isn't always prerequisite for achieving great things in life. Here are seven super successful people who dropped out of college only to become household names. To see more entrepreuners striving to achieve their dreams, watch Oxygen's upcoming docuseries Quit Your Day Job, premiering Wed., March 30 at 10/9c. 

1. . Lady Gaga

Before she was Lady Gaga, she was Stefani Germanotta, a student at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Stefani dropped out during her sophomore year to focus on her music and now she's Lady Gaga, so it's safe to say it totally worked out in her case.

2. . Brad Pitt

Brad Pitt dropped out of the University of Missouri two weeks before graduation. Two weeks! He majored in journalism and advertising but didn't feel ready to settle down, instead choosing to throw away his potential degree to chase a career in film.

3. . Mark Zuckerberg

Zuckerberg was already something of a prodigy by the time he attended Harvard; as anyone who's seen The Social Network can tell you, he launched the website from his dorm room. When the social networking behemoth started to take off, he bid farewell to higher education and transported his company to Palo Alto, California.

4. . Kanye West

Come on - his first album is titled "College Dropout," for heaven's sake. Kanye was an English major at Chicago State University before he dropped out pursue his dream of becoming a musical icon. Luckily for Kanye, it worked.

5. . Ellen DeGeneres

Ellen DeGeneres is a comedian, talk show host, actress, author, producer, and all around successful woman, which is why you'd probably never guess that she dropped out of the University of New Orleans after one semester of communication studies. After dropping out, her odd jobs included clerical work at a law firm, waitressing, and retail.

6. . Russell Simmons

Simmons was studying sociology at Manhattan City College when he dropped out to become a hip hop mogul. Claremont Lincoln University later awarded him with an honorary doctorate degree anyway, so how's that for irony?

7. . Steve Jobs

Stop me if you've heard this one before: a guy drops out of college only to later build a tech empire the size of which had never been seen before. Steve Jobs's story may be well-known, but that's because it continues to inspire countless people.


Four investors turn big ideas into big business on Oxygen’s new docuseriesQuit Your Day Jobpremiering Wed., March 30 at 10/9c. 

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