University Advising Center
Undergraduate Majors of Famous People
Here is some proof that picking the "right" major is often overemphasized.
Juanita Kidd Stout was a Justice of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania from 1988 to 1989. She was the first African American woman elected to any judgeship in the United States. She attended Lincoln University and her undergraduate major was MUSIC.
You might have never guessed these two actors majors.
Dean Cain attended Princeton University and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in HISTORY.
Teri Hatcher started to follow in her parents' footsteps and her major was MATH and ENGINEERING at De Anza College.
Janet Reno was the Attorney General of the United States from 1993-2001.
She attended Cornell University and her undergraduate major was CHEMISTRY.
Before becoming a well-known actor, Henry Simmons attended Franklin University.
He received a BUSINESS ACCOUNTING degree and started working for a Fortune 500 company.
He was unhappy with his job and decided to take some acting classes.
Diane Sawyer is a well-known ABC news anchor and is also known for her years as a
host for the show Good Morning America.
She also served in the administration of US President Richard Nixon.
She was an ENGLISH major at Wellesley College.
Unless you choose a career which requires technical or specialized training such as engineering or nursing, your choice of a major does not dictate what careers you will be able to enjoy.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. entered Morehouse College at age fifteen without graduating
from high school.
He graduated with his Bachelor of Arts degree in SOCIOLOGY in 1948, and he received his Bachelor of Divinity from Crozer Theological Seminary in 1951.
Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court Clarence Thomas was elected chairman of
the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission by Ronald Reagan in 1981. He was nominated
by George W. Bush for a seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the District
of Columbia Circuit in 1991.
He completed his Bachelor of Arts in ENGLISH LITERATURE at the College of the Holy Cross.
Of course, sometimes your major is directly related to your career.
John Fitzgerald Kennedy, also know as Jack, was the 35th president of the United States
from 1961 until his assassination on November 22, 1963.
His major at Harvard was INTERNATIONAL STUDIES.
Successful news anchor and reporter Connie Chung received her degree in JOURNALISM from the University of Maryland.
Television tabloid show host, Maury Povich received his degree in TELEVISION JOURNALISM from the University of Pennsylvania.
Bruce Lee was a great martial artist, martial arts instructor, actor, and director.
He attended the University of Washington studying DRAMA and PHILOSOPHY.
Below is a list of some more people you may find interesting along with their choice of college major.
Art Garfunkel, musician
Barbara Walters, broadcast journalist
Carly Fiorina, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard
David Souter, US Supreme Court Justice
Dick Cheney, Vice President of the US
Elizabeth Peters, author
George W. Bush, President of the US
Jason Alexander, actor
Katie Couric, broadcast journalist
Kevin Kostner, actor
Kevin Kline, actor
Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., author
Larry Niven, author
Lisa Kudrow, actress
Mario Cuomo, former Governor of NY
Mia Hamm, retired professional soccer player
Michael Crichton, author
Michael Eisner, former CEO, Walt Disney
Natalie Cole, musician
Sally Ride, Astronaut & first woman in space
Spike Lee, director
Steven Spielberg, director
Ursula K. LeGuin, author
Vince McMahon, owner WWE
Willard Scott, Today show weatherman
Medieval History & Philosophy
Business Marketing & Finance
Theatre & Drama