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EPS faculty Molly Ott on the Huffington Post.

In a Dec. 8, 2011 essay on the Huffington Post website, EPS faculty member Molly Ott and University of Michigan faculty member Michael Bastedo write about famous and successful, and not-so-famous or successful, college dropouts. Referring to Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, and others, they observe that "recently it has become very fashionable to glorify college dropouts." To learn more about the relationship between dropouts and successful corporate careers, Dr. Ott studied the educational history of 3,625 top managers at Fortune 500 companies--among other findings, she determined that 97 percent of Chief Executive Officers held four-year college degrees.

They write: "What is the damage in celebrating college dropouts? Every year, thousands upon thousands of students leave higher education without a degree. The National Center for Education Statistics estimates that around 20 percent of students who start at a four-year college or university will drop out within six years. Low-income students are the most likely to depart, leaving higher education with potentially large debts, no degree, no job, and few family resources. The idea that these students are well positioned to found tech start-up companies is a cruel joke."

Read the full article:

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