Famous Personalities and Their College Majors: A Deep Dive

4 Min Read

Most of us look at celebrities and wonder how they reached the pinnacle of their success. Did their education play a role? Were they always destined for the spotlight, or did they pivot from vastly different fields? In this article, we’ll explore the college majors of some renowned figures, proving that the journey to fame can begin anywhere!

1. Steve Jobs: Calligraphy and the Path Less Taken

While Steve Jobs did not have a traditional college degree, his short tenure at Reed College exposed him to a calligraphy course. This seemingly inconsequential choice later influenced the beautiful typography we see in Apple products. Jobs is a testament to following one’s passion, even if its relevance isn’t immediately clear.

2. Emma Watson: From Wizardry to Literature

Famous for her role as Hermione in the “Harry Potter” series, Emma Watson pursued higher education at Brown University. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English literature, proving that her love for books extended beyond the screen.

3. Natalie Portman: A Star Beyond the Silver Screen

Before her Oscar-winning performances, Natalie Portman attended Harvard University. Majoring in psychology, Portman showcased that talent isn’t limited to one domain, and academic pursuits can coexist with cinematic stardom.

4. Elon Musk: Physics and Economics Dual Major

Before Elon Musk was revolutionizing transportation both on Earth and in space, he attended the University of Pennsylvania. He majored in both physics (from the College of Arts and Sciences) and economics (from the Wharton School of Business), providing a solid foundation for his future ventures.

5. Rowan Atkinson: Electrical Engineering and Comedy?

Better known as Mr. Bean, Rowan Atkinson studied electrical engineering during his undergraduate years at Newcastle University. Later, he pursued an MSc in Electrical Engineering at The Queen’s College, Oxford. His unexpected journey from engineering to comedy shows the unpredictable paths life can take.

6. Will Ferrell: Sports Information – An Unconventional Path to Comedy

Before making the world laugh with his comedic prowess, Will Ferrell graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in Sports Information. While he didn’t pursue a career in this field, it shaped his early experiences and possibly contributed to his athletic-themed comedic roles.

7. Lisa Kudrow: From Biology to the Big Screen

The “Friends” star, Lisa Kudrow, holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from Vassar College. Before her acting career took off, she even conducted research on headaches with her father, a renowned physician.


The academic journeys of these famous personalities reveal that there’s no straight path to success. Varied majors, unexpected turns, and diverse interests can culminate into a unique story of fame. Whether you’re in college, deciding on a major, or contemplating a career change, remember: it’s your journey and passion that truly defines your success!