10 Colleges That Made Them Top CEOs

Where Fortune 500 CEOs went to school

Hard work and dedication helped propel these executives to the CEO positions they hold today, but they all received an education that put them on the path to professional success. The leaders who run the most lucrative companies in the nation and top the 2021 Fortune 500 list attended a variety of geographically diverse colleges to build a strong academic foundation. None of these 10 CEOs share an undergraduate alma mater, one is an Ivy League graduate and three earned degrees overseas. See where they got their start.

C. Douglas McMillon

Title and company: CEO and president, Walmart Inc.

Fortune rank: 1

Degree: B.S., Business Administration

College: University of Arkansas

U.S. News rank: 160 (tie), National Universities

Jeffrey P. Bezos

Title and company: Chairman, president and CEO, Amazon.com

Fortune rank: 2

Degree: B.S., Computer Science and Electrical Engineering

College: Princeton University

U.S. News rank: 1, National Universities

Tim Cook

Title and company: CEO, Apple Inc.

Fortune rank: 3

Degree: B.S., Industrial Engineering

College: Auburn University

U.S. News rank: 97 (tie), National Universities

Karen S. Lynch

Title and company: President and CEO, CVS Health

Fortune rank: 4

Degree: B.S., Accounting

College: Boston College

U.S. News rank: 35 (tie), National Universities

Andrew Witty

Title and company: CEO, UnitedHealth Group

Fortune rank: 5

Degree: B.A., Economics

College: University of Nottingham (U.K.)

U.S. News rank: 142 (tie), Global Universities

Warren E. Buffett

Title and company: Chairman and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway Inc.

Fortune rank: 6

Degree: B.S., Business Administration

College: University of Nebraska–Lincoln

U.S. News rank: 133 (tie), National Universities

Brian S. Tyler

Title and company: CEO, McKesson Corp.

Fortune rank: 7

Degree: B.A., Economics

College: University of California–Santa Cruz

U.S. News rank: 97 (tie), National Universities

Steven H. Collis

Title and company: Chairman, president and CEO, AmerisourceBergen Corp.

Fortune rank: 8

Degree: Bachelor of Commerce

College: University of Witwatersrand (South Africa)

U.S. News rank: 192 (tie), Global Universities

Sundar Pichai

Title and company: CEO, Alphabet Inc.

Fortune rank: 9

Degree: Bachelor of Technology, Metallurgy

College: Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur

U.S. News rank: 733 (tie), Global Universities

Darren W. Woods

Title and company: CEO and chairman, Exxon Mobil Corp.

Fortune rank: 10

Degree: B.S., Electrical Engineering

College: Texas A&M University

U.S. News rank: 66 (tie), National Universities

Are you the next Fortune 500 CEO?

The CEOs among the top 10 Fortune 500 companies all come from different backgrounds and levels of education, which begs the question: What does it take to become a Fortune 500 CEO? Share your thoughts with us on Facebook or Twitter.

Alma maters of the top Fortune 500 CEOs

— C. Douglas McMillon, Walmart Inc., University of Arkansas

— Jeffrey P. Bezos, Amazon.com, Princeton University

— Tim Cook, Apple Inc., Auburn University

— Karen S. Lynch, CVS Health, Boston College

— Andrew Witty, UnitedHealth Group, University of Nottingham

— Warren E. Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway Inc., University of Nebraska–Lincoln

— Brian S. Tyler, McKesson Corp., University of California–Santa Cruz

— Steven H. Collis, AmerisourceBergen Corp., University of Witwatersrand

— Sundar Pichai, Alphabet Inc., Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur

— Darren W. Woods, Exxon Mobil Corp., Texas A&M University

More from U.S. News

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10 College Majors With the Highest Starting Salaries

10 College Majors With the Lowest Starting Salaries

10 Colleges That Made Them Top CEOs originally appeared on usnews.com

Update 06/16/21: This slideshow has been updated to reflect changes to the Fortune 500 list and the Best Colleges rankings.

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