Parents tend to want their children to finish high school & college. But sometimes parents are met with a child who has unconventional abilities, the kind that can’t be fostered correctly in a regular high school environment. They are met with great success after dropping out of high school once they begin to follow their passions, and these kinds of people can be found across various disciplines throughout time.

These billionaires that didn’t finish college are proof that if you are meant to be successful, higher education might just be holding you back.

Steve Jobs

As one of the most well-known billionaires to drop out of college, Steve Jobs dropped out of Reed College after only a single semester. The mastermind behind Apple then went on to travel to India, where he experienced Eastern spiritualism.

However, once back in the United States, he and Steve Wozniak began their business. At the time of his death, Jobs was worth $10.2 billion.

Amancio Ortega

The founder of Inditex, a fashion empire that includes brands Zara and Massimo Dutti, ditched at age 14 to run errands for mom-and-pop shirt stores. Ortega, now the richest man in Spain, is worth well over $70.6 billion.

Ritesh Agrawal

Ritesh finished high school, but he didn’t make it through college. He dropped out at just 17 even after travelling from Cuttack to New Delhi to study business administration. It wasn’t the wrong decision though.

He was a millionaire by 22 and a billionaire two years later. As CEO of OYO Hotels, a company offering affordable hotel accommodation, Ritesh is on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list for Asia with a net worth of over $1.1 billion.

Richard Branson

Richard Branson was unable to reach success within the confines of school due to his dyslexia and dropped out of the Stowe School at the age of 16. Ironically enough, he started a magazine publication entitled Student. The magazine was not lucrative, but it would ultimately be the launchpad for Branson Virgin Records.

Branson ran ads in Student for records at discounted prices and his mail-order record business soon became profitable, opening the first store soon after with the staff from Student. Today, his company, Virgin Group, oversees nearly 500 subsidiaries. Branson himself has a net worth of $4.1 billion.

Mark Zuckerberg

This billionaire is well-known for being the founder of the social media giant, Facebook. At a ripe age of 36, Zuckerberg is worth over $99.6 billion. He launched the social network in his dorm room at Harvard University with his college roommates but later dropped out after the second year in June 2004 to pursue his business venture. Within a minimal time, his venture gained millions of users and has continued to be amongst the most visited sites on the internet.

Michael Dell

Was Michael Dell ever cut out for college? At just 8 years old, he applied to take his high school equivalency exam. His parents made him stay in school, but that didn’t slow Dell down. He focused instead on after-school ventures and, at 14, he learned that he was pretty skilled in fixing computers.

Dell gave college a go at the University of Texas. His parents hoped he would become a doctor, but he ended up building a $25,000/month computer business in his dorm room. Today, Michael Dell, the founder, chairman and CEO of Dell Technologies, one of the world’s largest technology infrastructure companies is worth over $27.2 billion.

Do you need a college education to make money? You be the judge of that. But based on the stories of these successful entrepreneurs, they haven’t let it get in their way. To learn more about how to achieve the right entrepreneurial mindset to achieve success, visit us at