college drop-outs to Top Entrepreneurs list

Be Inspired but don't follow Them

Several well-known people have defied common perception that one requires degrees to be successful in life. Here is a list of pioneers who dropped out of school/college and made it big.

1. Mark Zuckerberg

Founder of world’s one of most popular social networking site, the tech genius dropped out of Harvard University in 2004 and moved to Silicon Valley to dedicatedly work on Facebook.

Most successful college drop-outs in history

2. Mukesh Ambani

After completing his Chemical Engineering from Mumbai, Mukesh Ambani went to Stanford University but dropped out.

His father, Dhirubhai Ambani, got a license to set up a polyester plant, which was very crucial to the business. He asked his elder son to drop out and help him set up the manufacturing site.




Mukesh Ambani - Reliance Industries

3. Steve Jobs

Leaving Reed College in Portland, Oregon, six months after joining in 1972, the late Apple co-founder went on to transform one industry after another, from computers to smartphones to music.

Steve Jobs – Apple

4. Lawrence Ellison – Oracle Corporation

He left University of Illinois after his second year and is now ranked among one of the wealthiest people in the world. In 1966, aged 22, he moved to northern California to give shape to his hugely successful venture dealing in computer technologies, hardware systems and software products.

Lawrence Ellison - Oracle Corporation

5. Michael Dell – Dell

The billionaire is a University of Texas, Austin, dropout. Starting his business from a residential building close to his college in 1980’s, he went on to become one of the world’s leading sellers of personal computers.

Image result for Michael Dell – Dell

6. Henry Ford – Ford Motor Company

Billionaire founder of one of the world’s leading car manufacturing company, the late Henry Ford did not attend college during his formative years in late 1880’s.

Image result for Henry Ford – Ford Motor Company

7. Richard Branson – Virgin Group

The business tycoon struggled in school and dropped out at the age of 16 in 1966—a decision that ultimately led to the creation of Virgin Group.

Richard Branson – Virgin Group

8. Ralph Lauren – Ralph Lauren




The boss of multi-billion dollar clothing company dropped out after two years from Baruch College, USA, during 1960’s. In 1967, Lauren began designing men’s neckties, branding them under the name ‘Polo’ and later expanding his designs to a full menswear line.

Ralph Lauren - Ralph Lauren

9. Subhash Chandra – Zee

Media mogul, who is the chairman of Essel Group, dropped out after standard 12. He revolutionised the Indian television industry by launching the country’s first satellite television channel Zee TV in 1992.

Subhash Chandra – Zee

10. Sheldon Adelson – Las Vegas Sands Corps

He attended City College of New York in around 1950’s, but soon decided to drop out. Over the course of his business career, Adelson created over 50 of his own businesses in fields like hotels (The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino) and media (Israeli daily newspaper Israel HaYom).

Sheldon Adelson - Las Vegas Sands Corps

11. Evan Williams – Blogger

Also credited as the co-founder of Twitter, he created popular blogging platform Blogger. He attended the University of Nebraska–Lincoln in mid-1990’s but eventually left to pursue his passion.

Evan Williams - Blogger

12. Richard Li – Pacific Century Cyber Works

Hong Kong’s leading businessman joined Stanford University to study computer engineering, but did not finish the course. However, his interest in media and technology industries, in 1990, led to creation of STAR TV, Asia’s first satellite-delivered cable-TV service which he later sold to Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp.

Richard Li - Pacific Century Cyber Works

13.Pete Cashmore – Mashable

He never attended college, but launched the popular blog at the age of 19. Time magazine described Pete’s venture as the “one stop shop” for social media.

Pete Cashmore - Mashable

14. David Karp – Tumblr

The founder of United States’ 9th most visited website dropped out of Bronx Science High School in 2001. With dreams to hit it big, he started to give shape to hugely successful short-form blogging platform called Tumblr.

David Karp - Tumblr

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