By: Claire Holton
Unlike in other fields, a college degree isn’t required for a career in rock, yet some of our favorite artists still put their genius to work and dedicated themselves to scholarly pursuits. In honor of graduation season, we give you our Top 5 Classic Rockers with College Degrees!
1. Brian May
Queen rocker Brian May is also one of the biggest brainiacs in rock history. The guitarist earned an honor’s degree in Physics and Mathematics from London’s Imperial College and began a Doctorate in Astronomy before dropping out to join Queen. In 2007, though, May resumed his study and earned his Astronomy doctorate in 2008. Today, he is the Chancellor of Liverpool John Moores University!
2. Tom Scholz
In addition to creating Boston, multi-instrumentalist Tom Scholz is practically a genius with the credentials to prove it. He holds a Bachelor’s as well as a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from MIT and worked as a senior product designer for Polaroid before hitting it big as a rock star.
3. Simon and Garfunkel
Each member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted folk duo Simon and Garfunkel have stuck with their education. Paul Simon holds a Bachelor’s degree in English from Queens College and attended law school before dedicating himself to music. Art Garfunkel holds a Bachelor’s degree in Art History and also a Master’s degree in Mathematics from Columbia University!
4. Gene Simmons
Prior to his days of spitting fire and flashing his tongue on stage, KISS founder Gene Simmons rocked the classroom. Simmons earned his Bachelor’s in Education from Richmond College in 1970 and became a 6th grade teacher at PS 75 in Spanish Harlem, NY.
Besides becoming knighted and inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Police lead singer Sting holds a few advanced degrees as well. The rocker attended Northern Counties College of Education in the early 70s and worked as high school teacher before going full time with The Police. He earned an honorary Doctorate of Music from Northumbria University in 1992 and another from Berklee College of Music in 1994.