Successful People Who Were Expelled From College

College Dropout
PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel recently dared students to drop out of school, receive $100,000, and change the world. Now everyone has heard of college dropouts like Bill Gates who have gone on to alter the face of the earth. Kickouts are another story altogether.

Illuminated here are some of history’s most fabled college expulsions:

Harrison Ford

Harrison FordFord was expelled from Ripon College in Wisconsin after flunking a philosophy subject in his senior year. To add insult to injury, he was expelled three days before graduating. Not that he minded – he has since become one of the most bankable actors of all time. His movies have grossed $6 billion worldwide, half of which in the US alone.

Richard Buckminster Fuller

Richard Buckminster FullerHarvard expelled one Bucky Fuller not once but twice. The multi-hyphenate scientist was kicked out initially for splurging his entire wad on a revelry with a vaudeville troupe. He then proceeded to build the first geodesic dome; coin hitherto-unknown words like “Spaceship Earth,” synergetics, and ephemeralization; and pen more than 30 books.

Robert Frost

Robert FrostRobert Frost may have lied to biographers; he would have them believe he dropped out of Dartmouth College.

But some scholars contend that Dartmouth kicked him out after he trimmed a schoolmate’s hair in such a way that it created a bizarre shape at the back.

Salvador Dali

Salvador DaliNo teacher at any art school is worthy of evaluating Salvador Dalí’s work. When Dalí himself said so as a student at the San Fernando School of Fine Arts, he was expelled for “disturbing the peace.” That proved to be a blessing in disguise. He left for Paris soon afterwards and rubbed elbows with Picasso. Now he is revered worldwide as a surrealist painter of the first order.

Samuel L. Jackson

Samuel L JacksonMartin Luther King’s civil rights movement was roiling to a boil when Samuel Jackson was still studying at Morehouse College in Georgia.

The future award-winning actor was expelled in his junior year when he took part in one protest, which trapped the school board in a building for 48 hours.

Ted Kennedy

Ted KennedyAt the end of his second semester, and anxious about maintaining his eligibility for athletics for the next year, the youngest Kennedy brother was kicked out of Harvard bribing a friend who was knowledgeable on the subject take his Spanish language examination for him.

Ted Turner

Ted TurnerCNN’s founder went out of Brown University unceremoniously. He had been a star student there, captain of the sailing team and vice-presiding over the debating union. Notwithstanding, the university found it unbecoming of him to live with his girlfriend in his dormitory room and promptly booted him out. Today, his television network is richer than Brown University.

William Randolph Hearst

William Randolph HearstBefore William Randolph Hearst began his empire of newspapers and magazines, he had been kicked out of Harvard for presenting his teachers with silver chamber pots with their names inscribed on them.

He later conquered the world as a publisher and lawmaker.

Woody Allen

Woody AllenMovie director par excellence Woody Allen was expelled from New York University for failing multiple subjects. It turned out his creativity could not be contained in school. Aside from directing movies, Allen is a master at the jazz clarinet and an adroit thespian. In a piece he wrote for the New York Times, Allen sardonically said his alma mater “had the foresight and good taste to expel me many years ago.”

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By Healthy Lifestyle Blogzine

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14 Responses

  1. Dhara Mistry says:

    Should I say you site has some of the most interesting articles? It makes me come back to it everyday 🙂

  2. borzack says:

    @Dhara Mistry Thanks Dhara!

  3. Westin says:

    I knew a couple of these guys were kicked out of college, but I didn’t realize Samuel L. Jackson, Hearst and Turner had been too! Odd there’s no women on this list – are successful women less likely to be kicked out of college?

  4. best rhinoplasty says:

    I like your post. It gives hope to those who weren’t able to finish school that they too can be successful.

  5. bruce2.0 says:

    This post made it clear that everyone who wants to succeed will do so. It doesn’t matter if you are a college dropout. It takes experience and perseverance to succeed.

  6. jonasb says:

    It’s the reason why they succeed, because they got expelled on college. They need to strive hard and prove that they got something. It only emphasize that it’s not the end of the world yet. You can do better, coz when you failed once it makes you a better person. Not to mention that. they become very lucky to have a very successful life since then.

  7. junep26 says:

    This is an interesting post. I never thought that Harrison Ford was expelled from Ripon College. I studied there during my first year before we moved to a new place.

  8. c_noel80 says:

    These are pretty inspiring stories of people who got expelled from college. They are the most successful person and hard work made it all possible. I love this article a lot!

  9. johnlsn03 says:

    Ted Turner got kicked out just because of that? Maybe it is still a good thing though because his network is way richer that the university who expelled him. I really had fun reading posts on your site. Thanks for sharing these stories. I hope to see more.

  10. radio56 says:

    A lot of smart and successful people were college dropout. I admire them so much because they never stop after a tragic lost. Two thumbs up for this article! I already saved your site on my bookmarks.

  11. yushi1905 says:

    My grades were not good back in college and I really hope that this article can make me feel better. I wonder if I can still be successful even if I don’t go to college in this era of technology.

    • IXRufus says:

      @yushi1905 Hi yushi1905 names is uh IXRufus. I am here to tell you that it optional to go to college it strongly reccomend for most people. But some times for one reason or another you can still learn to live a successful life outside of college. Plus college helps you besides becoming more educated it allow people to become more social and try networking with their classmates as they might some day be able to help them get jobs or have experience working with you. Hope that helps.

  12. pasta says:

    These people are from the older generation and nowadays even being a mechanic needs a certificate. This is really getting out of way. Colleges are making money to teach things that are not useful and can be learned through experience itself.

  13. IXRufus says:

    I found this article to be very interesting on college drop outs who later on became famous or something. Anyways glad to know you don’t have to graduate college to be successful in life.

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