If you thought almost every actor in Bollywood is a college dropout, you are mistaken. Among celebrities who followed their passion instead of a college degree and made a success out of it, there is another lot that shined in both – academics and cinema.
Looks like it is not necessary to leave studies midway to follow your passion. Some may argue higher studies may not help but they do lend a perspective to you. And if you are looking for a job in Mumbai and that too not run of the mill, Bollywood has tons of options sans acting. You can aspire to be a cinematographer, stylist, sound engineer and make-up artist among others.
Here are a few B-town celebs (in no particular order) you may already know for their acting prowess but their educational qualification will surprise you.
Honours in Business, Finance, and Economics – Manchester Business School, UK
One of the finest actresses and someone who is highly educated, Pariniti has a triple honours degree in business, finance and economics from the renowned Manchester Business School, UK. Moreover, she is a trained Hindustani classical singer with a degree in music. If not in Bollywood, Pariniti would have been a sharp investment banker, say so many news reports.
Shah Rukh Khan
Bachelor’s degree in Economics – Hansraj College, Delhi University
The badshah of Bollywood was a brilliant student who did his schooling from St. Columbia’s School, Delhi. He was awarded the ‘Sword of Honour’ (the greatest honour given to a student by the institution) for being an exceptional student.
Business Management from the Nottingham Trent University, UK
Often called chocolate boy of Bollywood, Varun Dhawan is not only a fine actor but someone with quite a few hit movies such as October (2018), Badlapur (2015), Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania (2014), and Badrinath Ki Dulhania (2017). Varun has a degree in Business Management from the Nottingham Trent University, UK.
Soha Ali Khan
Master’s in International Relations – London School of Economics and Political Science, UK
Coming from a royal family, Soha Ali Khan is another well-educated actress in Bollywood. Soha did her schooling from The British School, New Delhi and then went abroad for higher studies. She studied modern history at Balliol College, Oxford and completed a Master’s degree in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Post-graduation in Business Management and Human Resource Management – Melbourne, Australia
One of the finest actors in Bollywood who is also a professional equestrian, Randeep Hooda is well known for his movies – Sarbjit (2016), Highway (2014) and Saheb, Biwi Aur Gangster (2011) among others. He studied in Motilal Nehru School, Sonipat and later completed post-graduation in human resource management from Melbourne, Australia. Not only he won accolades for his acting but he is also a winner of a silver medal at an open dressage event in New Delhi.
Bachelor’s Degree in Economics – Jai Hind College, University of Mumbai | MBA
John Abraham is someone who has inspired a generation when it comes to fitness and health. A fine actor and motorbike enthusiast, John has a bachelor’s degree in economics and an MBA from Mumbai Education Trust.
English Honours – St. Bede’s College, Shimla | Master’s in Criminal Psychology
Hailed as the true hero of Bollywood, the dimple queen of tinsel town Preity Zinta no doubt is a beauty with brains. After schooling from Convent of Jesus and Marry, Preity went on to complete a bachelor’s degree in English and later a master’s in criminal psychology.
Master’s in Sociology, University of Mumbai
Making a mark in the male-dominated industry, Vidya Balan is well-known for her roles in female-led films such as The Dirty Picture (2011), Kahaani (2012) and Tumhari Sullu (2017) among others. This Bollywood diva studied at St. Xavier’s College and later earned a master’s degree in sociology.
Degree in Economics and Gold Medalist – Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, US
Ameesha Patel is among the few actresses in Bollywood who is a gold medalist in economics. Reportedly, this Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai (2000) actress’s professional career began as an economic analyst.
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