Monday, February 23, 2015 at 12pm

5 Diverse Celebrities with MBAs

celebrity MBAs

The success of actors, professional athletes, and politicians in their respective fields by no means precludes accomplishment in other disciplines – indeed, sometimes the two things can go nicely hand-in-hand. The MBA provides plenty of scope for intertwining with any number of other areas as well as being a qualification aimed at high achievers, so it’s no surprise to see some crossover here!

Here are some examples of those who have excelled in other fields while also earning an MBA.

Shaquille O’Neal

Everyone knows the name Shaquille O'Neal. Although his career in acting and music is…questionable, O’Neal is a world famous athlete and avid degree-seeker. He finished an MBA program at the University of Phoenix in the mid-00s and went on to study human resource management at Barry University towards the end of his career. His ventures in real estate entrepreneurship, involvement in a microblogging startup, and majority ownership of the Sacramento Kings are enough to make you question those stereotypes about athletes.

George W Bush

Who could forget the ex-president of the US and enthusiast of all things Texas? Many have questioned his political choices and even his intelligence at times. However, Bush has a strong business background, stemming back to his family’s success in the oil industry, as well as serving his country as a pilot in the air force for several years on top of his better-known stints as governor of Texas and president of the United States. On top of all this, Bush earned a Master of Business Administration at the prestigious Harvard Business School. It is worth mentioning that George W Bush is the only president in history to receive an MBA.

Dr Oz

Mehmet Oz, better known as Dr Oz, is one of most recognizable television personalities in the medical field, cementing his status with The Dr Oz Show. Oz made his first appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Showover a decade ago and has gained immense popularity since then. His fans all know that he is a hugely successful surgeon and professor of surgery at Columbia University. However, while Oz was attending medical school at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, he also earned his Master of Business Administration at the Wharton School.

Lisa Leslie

Although somewhat lesser known than Shaq, Lisa Leslie was one of the most prominent figures in the Women’s National Basketball Association, completing twelve seasons with the Los Angeles Sparks. Leslie is a four-time Olympic gold medalist, as well as a three-time MVP for the WNBA. Education was never something that Leslie took for granted and she didn’t fall short when it came to taking her schooling seriously, graduating in eight terms from the University of Southern California. Then, similarly to Shaq, Leslie proceeded to get her MBA from University of Phoenix and has enjoyed considerable success following this. On top of all this, Lisa Leslie is a superstar model and aspiring actress.

Ina Garten

This Food Network starhas a strong connection to the business world. Garten’s show Barefoot Contessa has landed her six Emmy nominations, of which she won two. Before entering into the world of celebrity chefs, Garten worked at the White House, while also study an MBA at George Washington University. Garten’s business goals, of course, switched gears once her television show exploded. On top of all this she is an avid writer of not only widely successful cookbooks, but also three regular magazine columns.



Robert Parmer is a freelance web writer and student at Boise State University. Outside of writing and reading adamantly he enjoys creating and recording music, caring for his pet cat, and commuting by bicycle whenever possible.

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