Wayne Gretzky is renowned as one of the best hockey players to ever lace up a pair of skates. Over his illustrious 20-year NHL career, Gretzky set dozens of scoring records that may never be broken. But before reaching hockey superstardom, did Wayne Gretzky attend college?
Wayne Gretzky’s Hockey Career
Wayne Gretzky started playing organized hockey at age 6 in his hometown of Brantford, Ontario, Canada. By age 10, Gretzky had scored an astonishing 378 goals and 139 assists in just one season.
Gretzky joined the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the OHA at 16 and was soon dubbed “The Great One” for his prodigious skills. After one season, the Indianapolis Racers of the WHA signed Gretzky. His rights were later traded to the Edmonton Oilers, where he began his legendary NHL career.
Over 20 seasons with Edmonton, the Los Angeles Kings, and the New York Rangers, Gretzky set NHL records with 894 goals, 1,963 assists, and 2,857 points. He led the Oilers to four Stanley Cups and was a 10-time scoring champion.
Did Wayne Gretzky Go To College?
With his meteoric rise in hockey from a young age, Wayne Gretzky never attended college. After playing just one season with the Greyhounds at age 17, Gretzky turned pro with the Racers of the WHA.
The lack of a college degree didn’t hamper Gretzky’s preparation for hockey stardom, however. While with the Greyhounds, coach Muzz MacPherson insisted Gretzky complete his high school diploma.
According to Gretzky, MacPherson told him, “If you don’t go to school, you don’t play hockey.” Gretzky graduated high school and focused on hockey full-time after turning pro.
While he didn’t attend college as a student, Gretzky was named head coach of the Canadian national team for the 2002 IIHF World Championships. So in a way, Wayne got to coach college-aged amateurs at the international level.
What Degree Did Wayne Gretzky Get?
Without attending university, Wayne Gretzky did not obtain a college degree. However, Gretzky has received several honorary degrees to recognize his athletic accomplishments and community contributions.
Some of the honorary degrees Wayne Gretzky has received include:
- Doctor of Laws – University of Western Ontario, 2011
- Doctor of Laws – Wilfrid Laurier University, 2017
- Doctor of Letters – University of Alberta, 2014
So while Gretzky does not have an undergraduate or advanced degree, he has been recognized for his achievements with several honorary doctorate designations.
In summary, hockey legend Wayne Gretzky never attended college as he turned pro at age 17. His incredible natural ability allowed Gretzky to excel without a college hockey background. However, Gretzky has been granted multiple honorary degrees from Canadian universities later in life. So when people ask “Where did Wayne Gretzky go to college?” – technically the answer is nowhere, but he does now have some honorary degrees under his belt.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What education level did Wayne Gretzky reach?
A: Wayne Gretzky completed high school but did not attend college as he turned pro at age 17. He has since received several honorary doctorate degrees from Canadian universities.
Q: Did Wayne Gretzky play college hockey?
A: No, Gretzky never played college hockey. After junior hockey, he joined the pro ranks at 17 years old first in the WHA and then the NHL.
Q: What college teams wanted to recruit Wayne Gretzky?
A: There are no reports of any major college teams recruiting Gretzky. His rare talent was evident at a young age and he moved quickly to pro hockey without pursuing the college route.
Q: Could Wayne Gretzky have played in the Olympics without going to college?
A: Yes, Gretzky could have played Olympic amateur hockey for Canada without going to college since he never signed a pro contract. Ultimately, the NHL prevented its players from participating in the Olympics until 1998.
Q: Did Wayne Gretzky attend a technical school or college?
A: No, there is no record of Gretzky attending any technical school or college programs. He completed high school and went directly into professional hockey.