You Can Call Him Dr. Brian May
While rising to fame as the guitarist for the band Queen, Brian May was also studying to earn his Ph.D. in astrophysics. May received his Bachelor’s degree in physics and mathematics at Imperial College London, graduating with honors. He decided to go back to school in 1970 to get his Ph.D.
By day, May studied reflected light from interplanetary dust and the velocity of dust in space, and by night, he rocked on stage alongside Freddie Mercury. As Queen gained international success, he abandoned his studies. But May returned to finish his degree and graduated from Imperial College in 2007.
Ken Jeong Is a Doctor of Medicine
Ken Jeong, the same guy who jumped naked out of a car in The Hangover is also a medical doctor. In 1995, the hilarious actor graduated from the University of North Carolina’s Chapel Hill School of Medicine.
Although he graduated with his M.D., Ken Jeong doesn’t practice medicine anymore. Instead, he ultimately committed himself to a career in acting. I’m not complaining. I think he made the right choice.
Lisa Kudrow Has a Bachelor’s in Biology
Lisa Kudrow grew up with a father who was a renowned physician and researcher who focused on headaches. Lisa always thought she would follow in her father’s footsteps.
Kudrow attended Vassar College and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Biology. She was interested in the field and even got to work with her father’s research team, before getting into acting.
Lionel Ritchie Has a Bachelor’s in Economics
Lionel Ritchie attended Tuskegee Institute in 1967 on a Tennis Scholarship. While he was there, he met a few musicians and Ritchie formed his first band, The Commodores. Ritchie Graduated in 1974.
He earned his Bachelor’s in economics. However, he did have to put his studies on hold while he was touring. Eventually, he returned to school and finished his degree. It’s never too late.
Gene Simmons Has a Bachelor’s in Education
This one is a little surprising. Can you imagine Gene Simmons from the band KISS teaching middle school students? He briefly taught sixth grade before becoming “The Demon.”
Simmons graduated with an Associate degree from Sullivan County community college and a Bachelor of Arts in Education from Richmond College. He formed KISS shortly after finishing school.
Rooney Mara Has a Bachelor’s in Psychology and International Social Policy
Rooney Mara studied a whole bunch of subjects in the Gallatin School of Individualized Study at New York University. In 2010, she graduated with a Bachelor’s in Psychology, International Social Policy, and Non-profits.
It sounds like a pretty heavy course load, but Rooney Mara loves to learn. She left college with more knowledge than most people can handle.
Weird Al Yankovic Has a Bachelor’s in Architecture
Weird Al went to California Polytechnic State University. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture. It was only after completing school that he realized he didn’t want to work in that field.
Instead, he lived in Culver City and worked in a mailroom at a radio company. He dedicated all his spare time to focus on his music. Ultimately, his music career took off, and now he’s (still) Weird Al!s
Eva Longoria Has a Master’s in Chicano Studies
The beautiful Eva Longoria attended California State University. In 2013, she graduated with a Master of Arts in Chicano Studies. Besides that, she also has a Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology from Texas A&M University.
After going back to school to earn her Master’s, Eva said: “You’re ever too old or busy to continue your education.” I can’t argue with that.
Gabrielle Union Has a Bachelor’s in Sociology
Gabrielle Union attended the University of California where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Sociology. Gabrielle’s original plan was to go to Law School after she graduated.
However, fate had other plans. During her last year of college, Union began working at a modeling agency. She was encouraged to get into modeling and began acting quickly after finishing up her Bachelor’s.
Wanda Sykes Has a Bachelor’s in Marketing
Wanda Sykes graduated from Hampton University in 1986 after receiving her degree in marketing. That marketing degree earned the comedian a job as a contract specialist at the NSA!
She finally decided to try comedy for the first time in 1987, just one year after graduating. Once the world began noticing how funny she is, Sykes left the marketing work so that she can do comedy full time.
David Spade Has a Bachelor in Business
David Spade doesn’t exactly come off as a businessman. That’s why it may be surprising to find out that he actually earned his Bachelor’s in Business from Arizona State University.
During college, he was already performing stand-up and making his friends laugh. However, it wasn’t until he graduated in 1986 that he decided to focus on comedy full time.
Chris Martin Has a Degree in Latin and Greek
Chris Martin is famous for being the front-man of the band Coldplay. However, he didn’t meet his bandmates until he was a student at University College London.
Luckily, Martin managed to balance both school and music, so he didn’t have to put his studies on hold. He ended up graduating with first-class honors and earned his degree in Ancient Latin and Greek studies.
Ron Jeremy Has a Master’s in Special Education
As an ‘Adult film performer,’ you may be surprised by Ron Jeremy’s academic background. He actually attended Queen’s College where he received a Master’s of Education in Special Education.
Ron Jeremy became a teacher, believe it or not. However, it was when he realized that he wasn’t making much money as a teacher that he decided to pursue adult films.
Rowan Atkinson Has A Master’s in Electrical Engineering
Mr. Bean is a hilarious character, but I think we can all agree, he isn’t the smartest guy out there. However the same can’t be said about the actor who plays him, Rowan Atkinson.
Rowan received his Masters of Science in Electrical Engineering from Queen’s College, Oxford. While he was in school, he began performing. Eventually, he became the comedic legend we all know and love.
John Cleese Has a Bachelor’s in Law
John Cleese graduated from Downing College, Cambridge, where he earned his Bachelor’s degree in Law. He might have even become a lawyer if it wasn’t for Monty Python.
However, everything changed when he joined the theater troupe, the famed Cambridge footlights. He met his writing partner and fell in love with comedy. It was quite a career shift.
Vinny Guadagnino Has A Bachelor’s in Political Science
Vinny Guadagnino from Jersey shore actually earned his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the College of Staten Island. Surprisingly, the reality show star graduated with a 3.9-grade point average.
Vinny also claims that he has a “Masters in Womanry,” which honestly just grosses me out. Maybe he should have gotten a master’s in learning how to be a gentleman.
Will Ferrell Has a Bachelor of Arts in Sports Information
In 1990, Will Ferrell graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Arts in Sports Information. He explained that the Sports information program no longer exists.
“Yes, you heard me, sports information. A program so difficult, so arduous, that they discontinued it eight years after I left. Those of us with Sports Information degrees are an elite group. We’re like the Navy Seals of USC graduates. There are very few of us, and there was a high dropout rate.”
Arnold Schwarzenegger Has a Bachelor’s in International Business and Economics
Maybe we all shouldn’t have been so surprised by Arnold Schwarzenegger’s stint as the governor of California. Schwarzenegger attended the University of Wisconsin-Superior.
He graduated from the University with a Bachelor of Science in International Business and Economics. The man we know as the Terminator is not only talented but smart.
Hugh Laurie Has a Bachelor’s in Anthropology and Archaeology
Hugh Laurie comes from a very well-educated family. Going to college was basically a family tradition for the actor. He attended Selwyn College, Cambridge.
He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Archaeology and Anthropology and focused on social anthropology. I wonder if his Anthropology degree helped his acting career.
Freddie Highmore Has a Bachelor’s in Spanish and Arabic
Freddie Highmore started his successful acting career at a young age. Still, education was a high priority for the star. He attended Emmanuel College, Cambridge.
In 2014, Freddie got his Bachelor’s in Spanish and Arabic. He graduated with a double first, which is the British version of graduating with first-class honors.
Carrie Underwood Has a Degree in Mass Communication
You may remember Carrie Underwood as the talented contestant on season four of American Idol. After winning the show, Underwood decided to return to Oklahoma and finish her degree.
She only had three more credits left at Northeastern State University when she left for American Idol. She went back and graduated with a Bachelor’s in Mass Communication with an emphasis in Journalism.
Aziz Ansari Has a Bachelor’s in Marketing
Aziz Ansari has had a steadily growing career in the entertainment industry. From a small role in Parks and Recreation to creating and starring in his own show is impressive. Maybe his marketing degree has something to do with it.
Ansari attended New York University and wanted to become an Entrepreneur. I guess in many ways, he is. In an interview, Ansari said of his time at NYU: it was “such a weird culture.”
J. Cole Has a Bachelor’s in Communications
J. Cole (Jermain Cole) was a student at St. Johns University in New York while he was trying to make his music dreams come true. Whenever he wasn’t studying, Cole would make music and perform on campus.
In 2007, Cole graduated after majoring in communications and minoring in business. However, he didn’t receive his degree until 2015 because he owed money for losing a library book.
Natalie Portman Has a Bachelor’s in Psychology
Natalie Portman recalled, “I felt like there had been some mistake, that I wasn’t smart enough to be in this company, and every time I opened my mouth I would have to prove that I wasn’t just a dumb actress.”
Portman was ready to prove herself wrong when she attended college at none other than Harvard University. She was a movie star when she went in and came out as an educated actress with a Harvard degree.
Kourtney Kardashian Has a Bachelors in Theater Arts
Before the Kardashian name became an empire, the sisters were navigating life outside of the spotlight. As the oldest kid, Kourtney attended Southern Methodist University in Dallas for two years.
She later decided to transfer to the University of Arizona to finish her undergrad. In 2002, she earned her degree in Theater Arts and minored in Spanish. Later, Keeping Up With the Kardashians premiered. It’s safe to say they didn’t need college to start their careers.
Ben McKenzie Has a Bachelor’s in Economics and Foreign Affairs
Who would have thought that Ryan from the O.C. is well educated? Ben McKenzie went to the University of Virginia where he studied Economics and Foreign affairs.
McKenzie graduated in 2001 and has acknowledged how lucky and appreciative he was. “The ability to study e-con and foreign affairs during the day and perform on stage at night was a true blessing.”
Bradley Cooper Has a Bachelor’s in English
Everyone’s favorite Hollywood stud attended Georgetown University. Cooper graduated with a degree in English. He loved the subject and was interested in all his reading assignments.
The actor got excited when he was asked about his first encounter with Paradise Lost. He was very passionate about his studies and even admitted to crying in the campus library while reading Romeo and Juliet.
Rebel Wilson Has a Law Degree
One of the most hysterical actresses, Rebel Wilson, confirmed with Seth Meyers that in 2009, she graduated law school. The actress attended the University of New South Wales.
Wilson expressed how people sometimes look at her as stupid. “But no, I graduated from a school that’s kind of the Harvard of Australia.” Law is a tough subject, so this is a significant accomplishment.
John Legend Has a Bachelor in English
John Legend is another A-list celebrity that was passionate about his English Major. Legend started college when he was 16 and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1999.
He earned his degree in English with a concentration in African American literature. During his time as a student, Legend also performed as part of the acapella group, Counterparts.
JK Rowling Has a Degree in French
The Harry Potter genius has a gift for languages. JK Rowling earned her degree in French with additional Greek and Roman studies from the University of Exeter.
Rowling’s parents actually wanted her to get a vocational degree, but that didn’t end up happening. The author expressed how “A compromise was reached that in retrospect satisfied nobody and I went up to study Modern Languages.”
Danai Gurira Has a Bachelor in Social Psychology
Danai Gurira impressed us in her performance in Black Panthers and Avengers. In 2001, before she was Wakanda, the actress was studying at Minnesota Macalester College.
Danai told Rolling Stone, “I was really looking at race, population, gender, and how we psychologically function in a way that affects out societal outcomes around those issues.” She graduated with a degree in social psychology.
James Franco Is a Ph. D. Student at Yale
James Franco is a talented and controversial star. His strange behavior can get him into a bit of trouble, and he tends to portray characters that may describe him as a “dumb stoner.”
However, in reality, James Franco does not get nearly enough credit for his intelligence. He graduated from Columbia with a Master’s in Fine Arts. He also chose to continue his education and is studying for his Ph.D. at Yale while acting.
Mayim Bialik Is an Actual Neuroscientist
Mayim Bialik rose to fame while starring in the sitcom Blossom from 1991 until 1995. Even though it seems to have gone unknown, Mayim’s intelligence can put us all to shame.
Unlike most actors in the Industry, Mayim earned her Ph.D. in Neuroscience. She graced our screens again in the Big Bang Theory, portraying super smart Amy. She’s still active in the medical field and has published books on parenting and puberty.
Sacha Baron Cohen Graduated From Cambridge
Sacha Baron Cohen rose to fame when he portrayed Ali G in the 90s. His character was uneducated and rap music-obsessed. Since then, he has famously played ‘dumb characters’ such as Borat.
The London-born actor attended a private school and then got accepted to Christ’s College Cambridge, one of the most prestigious schools in England. He was part of the university’s dramatic society and graduated with an upper second-class degree in History.
Alison Williams Is a Yale Graduate
Alison Williams is the star of Girls. Her character Marnie wasn’t known for making the best decisions with her horrible romances and music career. However, Alison is quite different.
The star wasn’t allowed to act professionally until she graduated from Yale. She studied English and Archaeology. When Williams didn’t land a role in Yale’s musical, she joined an improv group. That’s when she discovered her true talent: comedy.
David Duchovny Has a Master’s Degree From Yale
David Duchovny is most famous for playing Fox Mulder, an FBI special agent in the cult science-fiction drama television series The X-Files. He then went on to play Hank Moody, the boozy writer in Californication (2007–2014). If you watched the show, you probably didn’t think Duchovny was much smarter than the character he plays.
However, he graduated from Princeton University with a degree in English Literature and then got his Master’s degree at Yale. He originally wanted to be a screenwriter and looked at acting as research. He didn’t realize he would drop his Ph.D. and end up acting full-time.
Dr. Oz Is a Cardiothoracic Surgeon
We know that most television doctors don’t exactly have the medical credentials to be a doctor in real life. Dr. Oz is known as one of TV’s biggest idiots, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth.
New York Times actually hailed him as “one of the most accomplished cardiothoracic surgeons of his generation.” He performed over 5,000 open heart surgeries and a successful lung transplant. That’s quite the resume.
Conan O’Brien Is a Harvard Graduate
Late-night host Conan O’Brien is clearly not stupid, but for a talk show host, he’s way more intelligent than you’d think. He graduated from Harvard and majored in History and Literature.
In 1985, his classmates nicknamed him as the “pre-eminent jokester.” In addition, he was president of Harvard Lampoon, a semi-secret organization that published a humor magazine. The comedian continues to speak fondly of his college days.
Harry Hill Is a Neuroscientist
Harry Hill is a British comedian. He has done well for himself on TV in England. The goofy comedian looks like a cartoon! He is known for his unusual style and wears signature big-collared shirts.
In 1992, Harry got his big break at the age of 28, but comedy wasn’t his original career choice. He earned his degree at the University of London and is qualified in neuroscience. In addition to his comedy career, Hill remains on England’s list of medical practitioners.