The 12 American Universities That Produce the Most CEOs

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Malik Ahmad Jalal, of Rawalpindi, Pakistan, below right, celebrates with other Harvard University School of Government graduates during Harvard's 360th commencement exercises, on the school's campus, in Cambridge, Mass., Thursday, May 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
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Malik Ahmad Jalal, of Rawalpindi, Pakistan, below right, celebrates with other Harvard University School of Government graduates during Harvard's 360th commencement exercises, on the school's campus, in Cambridge, Mass., Thursday, May 26, 2011.

If you want to be the Chief Executive Officer of a major company, where you went to school matters, according to a new list from Times Higher Education.

THE recently compiled a list of the universities around the world that produce the most CEOs, based on the alma maters of Fortune Global 500 CEOs.

From the list and speaking with both academics and businesspeople, THE found that — regardless of your major — "the presence of the right institution on your CV reassures potential employers about your likely aptitude for the job."

According to THE's methodology, university rankings were determined using "the total number of degrees awarded to CEOs; the total number of CEO alumni; [and] the total revenue of the alumni CEOs’ companies."

We've included all of this information for the top American schools, as well as the U.S. News and World Report's rankings of undergraduate and graduate business programs. We have also included a few CEO alumni from every school on our list. 

Harvard topped THE's list — both for international and American universities. The school has 25 alumni CEOs currently, more than double the next American university on the list.


#12 New York University

Number of Degrees Awarded: 4
Number of CEOs: 4
Total Revenue of CEOs: $327.1 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: #5 Undergraduate, #10 MBA
Notable Alumni: Robert Greifeld (NASDAQ), Chris Policinski (Land O'Lakes), Alan Weinberger (ASCII Group)

#11 University of Southern California

Number of Degrees Awarded: 4
Number of CEOs: 4
Total Revenue of CEOs: $704 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: #11 Undergraduate, #26 MBA
Notable alumni: Dan Bane (Trader Joe's), Cho Yangho (Korean Airlines), Kevin Tsujihara (Warner Bros.)

#10 Southern Methodist University

Number of Degrees Awarded: 5
Number of CEOs: 4
Total Revenue of CEOs: $575.3 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: #40 Undergraduate, #52 MBA
Notable alumni: Aart J. de Geus (Synopsys), C. David Cush (Virgin America), Edward B. Rust Jr. (State Farm Insurance)

#9 Yale University

Number of Degrees Awarded: 6
Number of CEOs: 6
Total Revenue of CEOs: $330.5 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: N/A Undergraduate, #13 MBA
Notable alumni: Ellis Jones (Wasserstein Perella & Co.), James McNerney (Boeing Company), Stephen A. Schwarzman (Blackstone Group)

#8 Columbia University

Number of Degrees Awarded: 6
Number of CEOs: 6
Total Revenue of CEOs: $545.7 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: N/A Undergraduate, #8 MBA
Notable alumni: Ursula Burns (Xerox), Michael Gould (Bloomingdale's), César Alierta (Telefónica)

#7 Northwestern University

Number of Degrees Awarded: 7
Number of CEOs: 6
Total Revenue of CEOs: $323.7 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: N/A Undergraduate, #4 MBA
Notable alumni: Cesare Mainardi (Booz & Company), Thomas J. Wilson (Allstate Corporation), Andrew S. Duff (Piper Jaffray)

#6 University of Chicago

Number of Degrees Awarded: 7
Number of CEOs: 6
Total Revenue of CEOs: $489.9 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: N/A Undergraduate, #6 MBA
Notable alumni: Brady Dougan (Crédit Suisse Group), J. Patrick Doyle (Domino's Pizza), Mark Hoplamazian (Hyatt Hotels Corporation)

#5 Cornell University

Number of Degrees Awarded: 8
Number of CEOs: 6
Total Revenue of CEOs: $375.3 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: #10 Undergraduate, #16 MBA
Notable alumni: Irene Rosenfeld (Mondelēz International), Lowell McAdam (Verizon Communications), Herbert Fisk Johnson III (S.C. Johnson & Son)

#4 Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Number of Degrees Awarded: 9
Number of CEOs: 7
Total Revenue of CEOs: $428.5 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: #2 Undergraduate, #4 MBA
Notable alumni: Charles Koch (Koch Industries), Drew Houston (Dropbox), Alan Mulally (Ford Motor Company)

#3 University of Pennsylvania

Number of Degrees Awarded: 9
Number of CEOs: 8
Total Revenue of CEOs: $405.4 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: #1 Undergraduate, #3 MBA
Notable alumni: Jeff Weiner (LinkedIn), Harold McGraw III (McGraw Hill Financial), Steve Wynn (Wynn Resorts)

#2 Stanford University

Number of Degrees Awarded: 13
Number of CEOs: 11
Total Revenue of CEOs: $492.5 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: N/A Undergraduate, #1 MBA
Notable alumni: Reed Hastings (Netflix), Rodney O'Neal (Delphi Automotive), Richard Fairbank (Capital One)

#1 Harvard University

Number of Degrees Awarded: 31
Number of CEOs: 25
Total Revenue of CEOs: $1,548.3 Billion
U.S. News Rankings: N/A Undergraduate, #1 MBA
Notable alumni: Steve Ballmer (Microsoft), Lloyd Blankfein (Goldman Sachs), Jamie Dimon (JPMorgan Chase)

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