We often think of celebrities as people who skipped out on normal life and headed straight for Hollywood. Why bother getting a degree when you can go make millions on a movie or TV set?
I'm not saying that's a bad thing of course. If Marvel wanted to cast me as an Avenger I would quit my job in a heartbeat. But I've still got a university degree to fall back on in case things didn't work out (they would, though).
There are a lot of celebrities in Hollywood, however, who managed to secure a degree in addition to being a household name. One sitcom even has someone who is literally a doctor in neuroscience. Who knew?
1. Eva Longoria
The former Desperate Housewives star has two degrees, a Bachelor of Science in kinesiology from Texas A&M, and a Master of Arts in Chicano Studies which she earned in 2013.
"You're never too old or too busy to continue your education!" she said after earning her master's degree.
2. David Spade
Though he may play less intelligent characters in movies and on TV, Spade earned his bachelor's degree in business from Arizona State University in 1986. He was in a fraternity and performed stand-up comedy on campus as well.
3. Will Ferrell
We can file this one under "degrees I didn't know existed." In 1990, funnyman Will Ferrell graduated from the University of Southern California with a bachelor of arts in sports information. When accepting his honorary Doctor of Humane Letters in 2017, Ferrell joked about his degree.
"Yes, you heard me, sports information," he said. "A program so difficult, so arduous, that they discontinued it eight years after I left. Those of us with sports information degrees are an elite group. We’re like the Navy Seals of USC graduates. There are very few of us, and there was a high dropout rate."
4. Arnold Schwarzenegger
Did you know you can get credits for "life experience?" Apparently it's a thing, just ask the former governor of California!
In 1979, when he was already an established body-builder, Schwarzenegger earned a bachelor of science in international business and economics. He initially started the degree at Santa Monica College, then completed it through the University of Wisconsin-Superior.
5. Gabrielle Union
The Bring It On star had every intention of becoming a lawyer, but things got turned around in the final year of her undergrad. Union earned a bachelor of science in sociology from the University of California, and in her final year she interned at a modeling company.
While she had planned on going to law school, the owner of the company convinced her to work as a model, and she then landed roles on Family Matters and Saved By The Bell.
6. John Cleese
No, his degree is not a bachelor of silly walks. Cleese earned himself a bachelor's in law from Downing College, Cambridge. While he was in school, Cleese joined the theater troupe and met his future writing partner, Graham Chapman.
7. Mayim Bialik
Not only is she a doctor, she also plays one on TV! Bialik was on TV long before her university days, playing the titular character on Blossom. After the show ended, she took some time off and earned her bachelor of science in neuroscience from UCLA, with minors in Jewish and Hebrew studies.
After that, she went on to earn her PhD in neuroscience in 2007.
8. Ken Jeong
Jeong's on-screen characters are generally pretty goofy, but in real life he's a really smart guy. In 1995, the Hangover actor earned his M.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine.
Though the licensed physician doesn't practice medicine anymore, his skills still come in handy. During a stand-up set in 2018, a woman started having a seizure in the audience. Jeong rushed off the stage to help her.
9. Hugh Laurie
How sweet would it be for the guy who played House to be an actual doctor? I mean, he's not. But that would have been cool.
Hugh Laurie earned himself a bachelor's degree from Selwyn College, Cambridge, with a major in archaeology and anthropology, and a concentration in social anthropology.
10. Weird Al
What does it take to be a Grammy-winning comedic singer? A degree in architecture, apparently!
Weird Al graduated from California Polytechnic State University with a bachelor of arts in architecture, but ultimately decided it wasn't for him. He worked in a mail room until he finally got big in the music industry.
11. Gerard Butler
Yes, he's one of the best-looking men in Hollywood, but he was almost the best-looking lawyer in the country. Butler earned a bachelor of law from the University of Glasgow and then got himself an apprenticeship at a law firm.
While on a trip to see Trainspotting at the Edinburgh Film Festival, Butler knew he had missed his calling.
"The guy playing the lead role was phenomenal," he said. "It was such an incredible atmosphere. And I'm dying inside. 'This is the life I wanted to live. I can do this. I know I can do this. But it's past now. It's gone. I'm 25. I missed that opportunity.' A week later, they [the law firm] fire me."
12. Rowan Atkinson
No, he's not actually as dumb as Mr. Bean. Atkinson studied at Newcastle University and Oxford University, ultimately ending up with his master's in electrical engineering.
While in school, Atkinson was involved in theater clubs and doing comedy shows, which landed him a one-man show in the West End.
13. Dolph Lundgren
Don't be fooled by his good looks, Lundgren could outsmart any of us. The Swedish action star has a degree in chemical engineering from the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, plus a master's degree in chemical engineering from the Universality of Sydney.
As if that wasn't enough, Lundgren also boasts an IQ of 160, which puts him in the "genius" category.
Which celeb degree is most shocking to you?