Editor’s note: This article is reprinted with permission of BusinessWeek. Vivek Wadhwa, the founder of two software companies, is an Executive-in-Residence/Adjunct Professor at Duke University. He is also the co-founder of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) Carolinas, a networking and mentoring group.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – I must confess to being disappointed five years ago when my son, Vineet, told me he had no interest in applying to any of the schools I consider elite. He said he would fit in better at a public state university and he didn’t believe that choice would lessen his chances of career success.
Perhaps it was the bias that my company’s venture capitalists showed toward management teams from top-tier colleges that skewed my thinking. Whatever the cause,
I have since concluded I shouldn’t have been upset in the least. An education from one of the world’s top schools may not give that much of an edge after all. And in some cases it may actually lessen the chances you will become a successful entrepreneur.
i should have known better. I didn’t graduate from an elite university—and by elite, I mean schools such as Ivy League universities, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University, and top-tier academic institutions globally. Yet I founded two successful technology companies.
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