5 Min Read

Where Did JFK Go to College?

John Fitzgerald Kennedy, more commonly known as JFK, was one of the most influential figures in American history. Before becoming the 35th President of the United States, he had an impressive academic journey that laid the foundation for his future success. In this article, we will delve into the educational background of JFK and explore the college he attended.

Early Education

Born on May 29, 1917, JFK grew up in Brookline, Massachusetts, in a privileged and intellectually stimulating environment. His parents, Joseph P. Kennedy Sr. and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy, placed great importance on education, which shaped JFK’s early years.

JFK began his educational journey at the Riverdale Country School in New York City, where he received a solid foundation in academics. However, his time there was cut short when his family moved back to Massachusetts in 1927.

College Preparatory School

Upon returning to Massachusetts, JFK was enrolled in the Choate School, a prestigious college preparatory institution located in Wallingford, Connecticut. It was at Choate where JFK truly honed his academic skills and developed a keen interest in history and literature.

During his time at Choate, JFK proved to be an exceptional student and an active participant in various extracurricular activities. He excelled in public speaking and debate, skills that would serve him well throughout his political career.

Harvard University

After completing his secondary education at Choate, JFK had his sights set on attending the renowned Harvard University. In 1935, he successfully gained admission to Harvard, where he would spend the next four years.

At Harvard, JFK pursued a Bachelor of Arts degree, majoring in Government. He immersed himself in the vast array of courses offered by the prestigious institution, with a particular emphasis on political science. It was during his time at Harvard that JFK’s interest in politics and public service truly flourished.

Apart from his academic pursuits, JFK also made a mark on the campus through his involvement in extracurricular activities. He became a member of the Harvard Crimson, the university’s daily student newspaper, and served as its business manager. Additionally, JFK was part of the Spee Club, one of Harvard’s distinguished social clubs.

World War II and Beyond

Following his graduation from Harvard in 1940, JFK joined the U.S. Navy and served with distinction during World War II. His heroic actions as a naval officer earned him several military decorations, including the Navy and Marine Corps Medal and the Purple Heart.

After his military service, JFK decided to further his education and enrolled in Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business. However, due to health issues, he withdrew from Stanford before completing his studies.


In conclusion, JFK’s educational journey played a pivotal role in shaping his character and preparing him for a career in public service. From his early education at Choate to his time at Harvard University, JFK’s academic experiences laid the foundation for his future accomplishments.

By attending Choate, JFK developed his academic skills and fostered a passion for history and literature. His years at Harvard University further fueled his interest in politics and governance, setting him on a path towards becoming one of the most iconic figures in American history.

Despite facing setbacks, such as his departure from Stanford University, JFK’s commitment to education and intellectual growth remained unwavering. His relentless pursuit of knowledge and his ability to excel academically undoubtedly contributed to his success as a leader.

JFK’s educational journey serves as a testament to the importance of a quality education in shaping individuals who have the potential to make a profound impact on society. The institutions he attended and the academic experiences he gained were vital in enabling him to become the inspiring leader and visionary that he was.


  1. Where did JFK go to college?
    • JFK attended Harvard University.
  2. What did JFK major in at Harvard?
    • JFK pursued a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in Government.
  3. Did JFK participate in extracurricular activities at Harvard?
    • Yes, JFK was involved in extracurricular activities at Harvard. He was a member of the Harvard Crimson, the university’s daily student newspaper, and the Spee Club, one of Harvard’s distinguished social clubs.
  4. Did JFK serve in World War II?
    • Yes, JFK joined the U.S. Navy and served with distinction during World War II.