If you win the Nobel Prize, I think it’s safe to say that you’ve made it. Your parents can be proud. Here's where the 2011 Nobel Laureates went to college.
UC San Diego
University of Colorado at Boulder
University of Arizona
Technion (Israel Institute of Technology)
Two 2011 Nobel Prize winners didn’t earn undergraduate degrees (one of those did get a masters at Eastern Mennonite University)
Go look up the colleges the members of Congress attended, the fortune 500 CEOs, your family doctor or lawyer or accountant, your school superintendent, and virtually anybody else you know (or can look up) who is successful. I’m serious—make a list of where successful people went to college and you’ll get a list that looks a lot like the one above.
Sure, you’ll end up with some highly selective colleges. It’s not surprising when you consider the intellect and work ethic students need to demonstrate to get accepted to those schools. But you’ll also find less selective colleges, too.
You don’t need to go to an Ivy League school or any other highly selective college to be successful. You just have to work hard and make the most of the opportunities presented to you during and after college.