Silicon Valley is one of the most meritocratic places on the planet, and talent, no matter what background, will be hired. If you don't have the ivy league resume, you still have same kind of opportunities that top tier students have. You just might have to work harder to get noticed.
What do Oracle's Larry Elison, Microsoft's Bill Gates and Paul Gardner Allen, and Dell Computer's Michael Dell have in common? They are all college dropouts who are either ex-CEOs or current of major technology companies. Why is the number 11 important to the Ivy league education debate? Eleven is the percentage of CEOs of Fortune 500 companies who have Ivy league degrees.
Does an Ivy League education result in a higher salary and more money over time? The answer to this question may depend on who you ask.
Most of the time we can rely on quantitative research to find the true answer. In this case, the research is inconclusive, at least for now. A 1999 study by Rand, Cornell and Brigham Young University indicated that Ivy League graduates earned as much as 39% more than those who went to second-tier schools, but Princeton professor and economist Alan Krueger and his fellow researcher Stacy Berg Dale released a study the same year with seemingly opposite findings. They found that when a student performed high enough to enter an Ivy League school, but instead went to a second-tier school, they earned just as much money as their Ivy League counterparts. This study was released again in 2007 with updated data and it came to the same conclusion as the original study.
Also, data indicates that although students pay more for their Ivy League education, those schools invest substantially more into each student when compared to other schools. In fact, elite schools spend 7.75 times more on each student. That translates in to $92,000 per student at Ivy League schools versus only $12,000 at second-tier institutions. (For related reading, see )
Pro Ivy League
Since the data is inconclusive, let's look elsewhere. On one side of the debate are the people who believe that attending and graduating from an Ivy League school affords benefits that aren't easily gained from their second-tier school counterparts. Those with Ivy League schools on their resumes may get a second look, and if the person interviewing you happens to be a fellow Yale graduate, that would certainly give you some talking points according to Steve Menack, an Ivy League graduate and successful attorney after graduating from Columbia Law School. He goes on to say that potential clients definitely look at him differently because of his Ivy League education.
According to another popular argument, there are also networking benefits. Those who attend Ivy League schools are constantly in the presence of fellow high-performing students who already have prestigious contacts in large companies and those contacts may open the door to jobs not available to those who attend other schools.
Sneak Peak – Example of Ivy League Executive Resume
At this point, I expect, I’ve almost lost you. Far too much junk science gets printed by “psychologists” under similar, cheesy titles, and this claim, philosophically speaking, is incredibly bold. Zimbardo, though, doesn’t just have an impressive, Ivy League resume, including a stint as President of the American Psychological Association, he’s also the man behind one of the most fascinating experiments of all time: the .