Warren Buffet

What Degree to Study if You Want to Become a Billionaire

Want to be rich? Then study engineering (or don’t go to uni at all).

That’s the finding from new research which breaks down the degrees obtained by the world’s 100 wealthiest people.

22 per cent of this elite group, billionaires the lot of them, studied engineering, while just 12 per cent studied business and 9 per cent fluffed around in arts.

But almost a third of the world’s top billionaires didn’t obtain a degree at all, showing that hitting the books doesn’t necessarily correlate to private jet level success.

The study goes on to rank fields of study by the average wealth of the billionaires that studied them.

Again, engineering came out on top, with an average wealth of $25.77 billion, followed by no degree ($24.03B), business ($22.50B), economics ($22.10B) and arts ($20.51B).

As you’d expect, the USA boasts the highest number of billionaires in the top 100, with 39 per cent, followed by Germany (8 per cent), Russia (6 per cent) and China (6 per cent).

Australia only scores one place in the top 100, with mining magnate Gina Rinehart clocking in at number 94 with a $12.3 billion fortune.

Finally, regardless of what you do or don’t study, the industry that’s most likely to make you rich is technology. 19 per cent of the world’s richest made their fortunes through ones and zeros, followed by retail at 15 per cent.

Profile of the world’s top billionaires

  • Gender: 88 per cent male
  • Average age: 67.5
  • Married: 68 per cent
  • Average number of children: 3
  • Nationality: 39 per cent American
  • Tertiary education: 68 per cent
  • Average wealth: $22.5 billion
  • Happiness: Unknown

Check out this gallery of the top 10 richest billionaires in the world (and what they studied):


1. Bill Gates (tech), $79.2B, college drop out (Harvard).

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Source: The World’s Billionaires List 2015, Forbes

Main Image: Fortune Live Media, Flickr 


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