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12 presidents did not graduate from college (note all but one before the late 19th century). However, in the early inception of the American education system, two of these 12 founded and established facilities for formal education. Wilson was the only one to attain a Ph.D. Harrison was the only M.D. 15 attended ivy leagues in some form of undergraduate studies. JFK was the only to study abroad at the London school of economics. Four have attended Military colleges or academies. Harvard has the most presidential alumni.

Statistically, a US President is more likely to be a lawyer than to not have gone to college (this completely ignores the time trend of going to college and graduate school), as 15 have attended law school. This number is even higher considering 20 US Presidents became lawyers either through formal schooling or through obsolete self-study programs or internships popular in the past.

Thomas Jefferson founded the University of Virginia. He adamantly spoke about the fundamental importance of education — an ethos so important it yielded a legacy of learning. He was quoted on January 27th, 1800 in a letter to Joseph Priestly saying, “I thank on my knees, who directed my early education, for having put into my possession this rich source of delight (knowledge of Greek and Latin); and I would not exchange it for anything which I could then have acquired, and have not since acquired.”

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