How Education Have Influenced the Success of Heroes of Forbes


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What do you need to get rich in the US? Is it really necessary to graduate from the University of the “Ivy League” or get an MBA?

Forbes collected data on the maximum possible number of Forbes 400 participants, asking them questions about training, and also asked them how they paid for it. 390 participants answered the questions.

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Although there are billionaires and do not have higher education, most of the businessmen on the Forbes 400 list received a bachelor’s degree. According to Forbes, in general, about 84% of the richest people in the US have a bachelor’s degree and above, while among ordinary Americans this figure is 33%.

In this case, the most wealthy heroes of Forbes were educated in elite universities, more than 23% of members of Forbes 400 received their degrees in the universities of the “League of Ivy”. However, many other institutions in which American businessmen were trained were listed: from Middlebury College in Vermont to Bowdoin in Maine. There are also many billionaires who graduated from state universities, although such an education is considered not so prestigious.

For example, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is a graduate of the University of Arkansas, oil tycoon Terrence Pegula studied at the University of Pennsylvania, and a billionaire from Miami Norman Brahman graduated from Temple University (Philadelphia State Research University).

Before putting together his fortune at Braman Motorcars, a luxury car dealer that brings in $ 2 billion in revenue each year, Braman worked at a retail store four days a week, earning 50 cents an hour to pay for his training at Temple. And he is only one of the many participants of the Forbes 400, who paid for their studies with the help of sub-jobs or scholarships. Joe Ricketts, for example, graduated from Creighton University in 9 years, because he periodically left school to save money for training. Including he worked as a cleaner in the hostel, this provided him with accommodation and meals.

Also among the billionaires from the list are a lot of MBA students: 72 people, 26 of whom went to the prestigious Harvard Business School. These include former Mayor of New York Michael Bloomberg and billionaire Ray Dalio. Some businessmen are exactly where they met: for example, the CEO of Hewlett-Packard, Meg Whitman, heir to the tobacco company John Middleton and real estate tycoon Jeff Greene were classmates in 1969. Another 21 members of Forbes 400 received a degree (Ph.D.), and only two became doctors of medicine.

In October 2017, the American Forbes published a rating of 400 richest inhabitants of the United States. This year, the “threshold” for entering the list was a record $ 2 billion, which is 18% more than last year (at that time it was $ 1.7 billion). The total state of the members of the rating has grown to $ 2.4 trillion.

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