Another Quora Question and Response

Here’s the question:

Was Mark Zuckerberg accepted to Stanford, Carnegie Melllon, MIT or UC Berkeley (all ranked higher in CS than Harvard)? Is, why did he not attend?

And a response from Christian Bergland, McGill ’08

I’m totally going out on a limb here, but I think it’s important to remember that Zuckerberg is a pretty interesting guy with very diverse interests.  Most accounts state that he made a habit of quoting the classics, and he was studying psychology as well as CS while at Harvard (this probably came in handy when he was building out Facebook). 

Also note that he went to school already knowing how to program.  Zuckerberg started Facebook in his fourth semester at Harvard, and had already created and sold various projects prior to that.  It is perfectly logical that he would go to the place with the best overall reputation, and the one that could provide the best connections and the best overall learning experience, rather than the place that was most highly reputed in teaching him the things he already knew how to do.  He didn’t really need to learn the skills that you would learn in a CS program.

Zuckerberg could have gone to Harvard to study horticulture and the end results would probably be the same.

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