How This 25-Year-Old College Dropout Became the Youngest Self-Made Billionaire

He dropped out of MIT at 19 to establish his own tech startup.
by Leika Golez   |  Jun 1, 2022
Image: Twitter/alexandr_wang
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While education can come a long way in accomplishing our career goals, there are still a handful of people who became successful without a formal college degree. For example, the youngest self-made billionaire today is a 25-year-old college dropout from New Mexico. 

After a year of studying BS Mathematics and Computer Science in Massachusetts Institute for Technology, Alexandr Wang dropped out of school to launch his own startup with former co-worker Lucy Guo. From the ground up, they established a tech company called Scale AI in an attempt to accelerate the development of Artificial Intelligence applications. 

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Simply put, the startup uses AI to automate tasks for major companies like Toyota Research Institute, Samsung, Airbnb, Uber, and P&G. The startup now generates over $100 million in revenue, making Alexandr’s 15% stake in the company worth an estimated $1 billion.

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Born to a family of physicists, Alexandr has been excelling in the field since he was a kid. At 17 years old, he was coding full-time for Quora while juggling his high school studies. A few years prior, he was a regular competitor in various science competitions and math Olympiads.

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His advice for aspiring young professionals? Determine the challenges faced by your industry of interest, then maximize your personal strengths to address them.

“In any new industry, or any even old school problems, there's always going to be bottlenecks that can be solved with technology or a new approach. Identifying those bottlenecks is a big piece of advice I would give,” Alexandr stated in a previous interview with the Business of Business. 

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“And focus, because you really can't be everything to everyone, you need to figure out what you focus on. What can you do better than anyone else? And what's the special thing that you can offer?” he concluded. 

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Leika Golez
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