A surprising number of presidents never graduated college

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Media and potential opponents are scandalized that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is considering a run for president even though he didn’t graduate from college. But if Walker (who dropped out of Marquette University in his senior year) won in 2016, he would be joining an exalted group that includes the two presidents most frequently named as the favorites of the American people.
Eleven presidents — exactly 25 percent — were not college graduates. Most prominent on that list are George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, who make up half of Mt. Rushmore’s foursome and are in the top three or top five in virtually every popular survey of favorite presidents. (A 2007 Rasmussen poll put Honest Abe and the Father of Our Country at number two and number one, respectively.) The most recent president to forego the benefits of a sheepskin was Harry Truman, and the list includes other fondly remembered (and a few barely remembered) chief executives.

Meet the presidents who dropped out or didn’t make it to college at all:


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