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Which US presidents have honorary degrees from Yale?

Images: Wikimedia Commons.

Images: Wikimedia Commons.

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Twenty years ago, at Yale’s 300th commencement, George W. Bush ’68 was awarded an honorary degree. Bush is the most recent of the 15 US presidents who have been so honored and one of seven whom Yale recognized during their presidencies. Seven were honored before taking the office, and one, Gerald Ford ’41LLB, afterward. All were awarded a Doctor of Laws—except Wilson, who received a Doctor of Letters while a professor at Princeton. Four of the five alumni who have served as president have received honorary degrees; only Bill Clinton ’73JD has not. Asked about this in a 2008 Yale Alumni Magazine interview, then-president Rick Levin ’74PhD responded simply: “Don’t assume that we never invited him.”

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