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Celebrity GED Graduates

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If you didn't finish high school, a high school equivalency (HSE) test is your second chance to get back on track for better jobs, higher education, and more self-esteem. You'll be in good company. Hundreds of thousands of people earn a HSE diploma each year, and many of them go on to important jobs and interesting lives.

Singers and actors often focus on their careers when they're young and sometimes miss out on high school. An HSE diploma is a way to earn an important credential, even for celebrities who are already successful.

Actors Who Earned a GED Diploma

Celebrities Paris Hilton and Jessica Simpson earned their GED certificates. Actor Christian Slater earned his HSE diploma to set a good example for his children. Actor and activist Michael J. Fox and actors Christina Applegate, Angelina Jolie, Kelly McGillis, and Mark Wahlberg also earned GED diplomas, as did comedians Chris Rock and D.L. Hughley.

Musicians Who Earned a GED Diploma

Musicians including Britney Spears, David Bowie, 50 Cent, Eminem, Pink, Jerry Garcia, and Waylon Jennings are GED graduates. Olympic gymnast Mary Lou Retton is also a graduate, along with boxer Oscar De la Hoya and soccer player Mario Torres. ABC News anchor Peter Jennings earned a GED diploma and encourages adult students.

Leaders Who Earned a GED Diploma

What about business and government leaders? Dave Thomas, who created Wendy's restaurants, earned a GED certificate. You can add to the list Wally Amos, maker of Famous Amos cookies. GED graduate Ruth Ann Minner became governor of Delaware, and former New Jersey governor Jim Florio also earned a GED diploma, as did the 17th Surgeon General of the U.S., Richard Carmona, and former U.S Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell.

HSE credentials are important for Americans who never earned a high school diploma. Online high school diplomas are not accepted by many employers and colleges, but the HSE diplomas are the gold standard, awarded by your state and accepted by over 95% of colleges and jobs. If you earn your HSE diploma through the GED test or the HiSET exam,  you'll be in good company.