Celebrities Who Attended Community Colleges

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Halle Berry attended Cuyahoga Community College

Halle Marie Berry is an American actress who became the first African-American to win the Best Actress Oscar for her role in Monster’s Ball.

In 1985, she won the Miss Teen-All American Pageant for the state of Ohio and became runner-up the following year in Miss Teen USA.

Berry attended Cleveland’s Cuyahoga Community College to study broadcast journalism, but decided to focus on an entertainment career instead.

Gwendolyn Brooks graduated from Wilson Junior College 

Gwendolyn Brooks has authored more than 20 poetry books and won a Pulitzer Prize for her 1949 work “Annie Allen.”

Brooks graduated from Wilson Junior College in the 1930s and would later teach at Columbia College (Chicago), Northeastern Illinois University, Elmhurst College, Columbia University, Clay College of New York and the University of Wisconsin.

In 1968, she was named Poet Laureate for the State of Illinois and served until her death in 2000. In 1985, she was also appointed Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress.

Billy Crystal attended Nassau Community College

William Edward “Billy” Crystal is an American actor, film director and one of the most popular long-time hosts of the Academy Awards.

He originally attended Marshall University in West Virginia on a baseball scholarship but the program was suspended during his freshman year. He then attended Nassau Community College and eventually graduated from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts with a bachelor’s of fine arts degree in 1970.

One of his most famous roles is playing the character Harry Burns in the hit movie, When Harry Met Sally.

Walt Disney attended Metropolitan Junior College

Walter Elias Disney is an American pioneer and innovator in motion pictures known for his creation of Mickey Mouse and Disneyland.

He attended Metropolitan Junior College in Missouri.

During the earlier stages of his production company, Disney held the Technicolor patent for two years, allowing him to be the sole producer in colored motion pictures.

Throughout his lifetime, Disney and his staff won 48 Academy Awards and seven Emmys.

Clint Eastwood attended
Los Angeles City College 

Clinton Eastwood is an award-winning actor, film maker, composer and politician.

In the early 1950s, he was a swimming instructor for the U.S. Army. He almost gave up acting and attended Los Angeles City College to study business administration before he got his big break in the TV series Rawhide. In 1971, his role in Dirty Harry turned him into a superstar.

Eastwood was nominated for both Best Actor and Best Director in the films Unforgiven and Million Dollar Baby.

Tom Hanks attended
Chabot College 

Thomas Jeffrey Hanks is an Oscar-winning actor and director who was nominated and won the most Academy Awards between 1994 and 2004.

Hanks attended Chabot College and California State University before traveling to Cleveland for a community theater play to start his acting career.

Jim Lehrer graduated from
Victoria College 

Jim Lehrer is an American journalist most known for his work with PBS and “The News Hour” with Jim Lehrer.

He received his Associate of Arts degree from Victoria College before earning his bachelor’s degree in journalism at the University
of Missouri.

After a stint with the U.S. Marines, Lehrer got his start in newspapers before breaking into public television. He covered the House Judiciary Committee’s impeachment inquiry of President Richard Nixon.

Lehrer has received numerous awards for his journalistic abilities, including two Emmys, a Chairman Award and the Fourth Estate Award. He has authored 20 novels and three plays.

George Lucas attended Modesto Junior College

George Walton Lucas, Jr., is an American director who redefined the term “blockbuster” with his Star Wars, American Graffiti and Indiana Jones films.

Before he became interested in cinematography, Lucas enrolled at Modesto Junior College to study anthropology in the 1960s. He eventually graduated from film school at the University of Southern California.

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