27 Surprising Celebrity College Majors

Cindy Crawford - Chemical Engineering
Crawford graduated from high school as valedictorian, winning an academic scholarship to study chemical engineering at Northwestern University. She only attended one quarter before dropping out to pursue modeling full time.
Ed Norton - History & Japanese
Norton attended Yale University as a History major and a Japanese minor. Following graduation, Norton spent some time working for The Enterprise Foundation in Osaka before deciding to move to New York City to become an actor.
Robert Redford - Painting
Redford initially attended the University of Colorado on a baseball scholarship, which he later lost due to alcohol-related infractions. He then attended the Pratt Institute of Art to study painting.
article continues below ad
Danny DeVito - Cosmetology
DeVito's goal was to act but he attended the Wilfred Academy of Hair and Beauty Culture and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts for a makeup course so he could make a living working as a hairdresser at his sister's salon.
Dwayne Johnson - Criminology & Physiology
Johnson ranked as one Pennsylvania's top 10 high school football players, which earned him a scholarship to the University of Miami and the honor of being the first member of his family to attend college.
Ken Jeong - Pre-Med
Jeong was pre-med at Duke University and went to medical school at University North Carolina-Chapel Hill. While at med school, Jeong did stand-up comedy in local clubs & though he became a doctor, he was bit by the acting bug.
article continues below ad
Lisa Kudrow - Biology
Kudrow attended Vassar College with the intention of entering the medical research field & working for her father. Following a stint where she performed headache research, Kudrow finally succumbed to the impulse to act.
Gene Simmons - Education
Simmons had a strong belief in schooling. By 1970, he had a degree in education and fluent mastery of Hungarian, German, English and Hebrew, all while working with a series of bands.
Alec Baldwin - Political Science
Baldwin attended Georgetown University but after visiting a friend at NYU who introduced him to the theater department, he decided to put his law school plans on hold and take a more risky detour; he transferred to NYU to study acting.
article continues below ad
Rooney Mara - Psychology & International Social Policy
After touring South America and Kenya for four months as part of the Traveling School, Mara was inspired to launch her own non-profit, Faces of Kibera, and study at NYU's Gallatin School of Individualized Study.
Wiliiam H. Macy - Veterinary Medicine
Macy studied veterinary medicine at Bethany College in West Virginia but his "hippie lifestyle" interfered and he transferred to Goddard College in Vermont to study theater.
Gerard Butler - Law
Butler attended Glasgow University for law but was uncertain about his choice so he moved to LA & appeared as an extra in "The Bodyguard". After dipping his toe unsuccessfully in the acting pool, he returned home and began a law traineeship. The acting bug must have lingered!
article continues below ad
Terrence Howard - Chemical Engineering
After he nearly destroyed his acting career before it began by fighting with Bill Cosby, Howard earned a degree in chemical engineering at Pratt Institute.
Marcia Cross - Master's in Psychology
Following her role as Dr. Kimberly Shaw on 'Melrose Place', Cross earned her Master's Degree in psychology at LA's Antioch University.
Kate Beckinsale - French & Russian Literature
Beckinsale pursued her education at Godolphin & Latymer School, then Oxford University, where she also took up acting.
article continues below ad
Forest Whitaker - Opera
Whitaker was offered a football scholarship but opted instead to attend the University of Southern California Conservatory on a vocal scholarship.
James Cameron - Physics
Cameron enrolled at California State University-Fullerton, where he studied physics for a year before dropping out to marry a waitress, drive trucks, and smoke pot.
Anna Faris - English Literature
Although she often plays dumb, Faris received her bachelor's in English literature from the University of Washington.
article continues below ad
Ashton Kutcher - Biochemical Engineering
Kutcher went the University of Iowa, where he majored in biochemical engineering, motivated to find a cure for his twin's heart ailment. He dropped out after being recruited by a modeling agent at a local bar.
Jennifer Garner - Chemistry
Despite her obvious love of performing, she was interested in following in her father's footsteps when Garner enrolled at Denison University in Ohio to pursue a chemistry degree.
Eva Longoria - Kinesiology
Longoria was a student at Texas A&M University-Kingsville when she began competing in pageants, which later evolved into acting when a theatrical agent saw her potential.
article continues below ad
Matthew Fox - Economics
Fox received a football scholarship from Columbia University & dreamed of Wall Street. His plans changed when a girlfriend's mom, who happened to be an agent, suggested the 6'2" hunk try modeling instead of trading stocks.
Jay Leno - Speech Therapy
A born class clown, Leno was reportedly encouraged by a guidance counselor to drop out of high school; but he persevered, receiving his high school diploma and a bachelor's degree in speech therapy from Emerson College in Boston.
Samuel Jackson - Marine Biology
Jackson attended Morehouse College and initially majored in Marine Biology. After becoming involved theater, he set his sights on acting.
article continues below ad
Will Ferrell - Sports Broadcasting
Ferrell went to University of Southern California to study Sports Broadcasting but the funniest guy at Delta Tau fraternity realized he liked making people laugh while interning at a local news show.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt - French Literature & French History
After childhood on-screen success in '3rd Rock from the Sun', Gordon-Levitt enrolled in Columbia University in New York to study French Literature and French History.
Cate Blanchett - Art History & Economics
Blanchett attended the University of Melbourne as an art history and economics major but on a whim, she auditioned for a spot in the National Institute of Dramatic Arts and changed her path forever.