How Much Education Do You Need to Become a CEO?

Some of the most prominent businessmen in the world, from Bill Gates all the way to Mark Zuckerberg, are famous for not having completed their college degrees. This has created a misconception among people that not going to college is the best way to become successful, and that going to college limits the opportunities that you would be able to gain at some point in the future.

However, the truth is that going to college can actually help you out quite a bit when it comes to your career. While some of the more well known CEOs in the world did not complete college, the vast majority of CEOs in today’s modern day and age do in fact have a college degree. An argument can be made that postgraduate education is not that important for becoming a CEO since most CEOs make do with a bachelor’s, the fact of the matter is that going to college in the first place is actually quite important from a career standpoint.

Not only does going to college help you by providing you with a skillset that can prove to be quite useful if you are legitimately trying to improve your chances of heading a high earning company, there are numerous other benefits that are associated with this sort of thing as well. After all, university isn’t all about studying, there are a number of other things that need to be taken into account in this area as well.

One of the main benefits of going to university is that it gives you a place where you can genuinely develop your networking skills and create a network of people that could potentially turn into business associates at some point in the future. What’s more is that this network would provide you with numerous job opportunities that could get you on your way to becoming a CEO when you are well settled in the career that you have chosen.

Another assumption about CEOs is that if they have gone to university, the majority of them will have gone to big name schools like Harvard or Yale. While there are quite a few CEOs from these well respected and prestigious institutions, the majority of CEOs have studied at universities outside the Ivy League, so don’t think that going to a less prestigious school is going to negatively impact your chances of becoming a CEO.


The degree you get is less important than you would have initially realized as well. While nearly a quarter of all CEOs have gotten a degree in business, even more have gotten a degree in the field of engineering. Quite a few CEOs have gotten specialized degrees in philosophy or other similar subjects as well. The infographic below, courtesy of Fundera, will give you more information about how much education is required in order to become a CEO.

Does Your Education Impact Your Chances of Becoming a CEO? (Infographic)

Read next: Can You Really Be Successful Without A College Degree? (infographic)

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