U.S. and UK institutions of higher learning captured the top spots in the 2009 QS World University Rankings, which appear below.
1. Harvard University
2. University of Cambridge
3. Yale University
4. University College London
5-6. (tie) Imperial College London
5-6. (tie) University of Oxford
7. University of Chicago
8. Princeton University
9. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
10. California Institute of Technology
OS’ profile on Harvard identified seven U.S. Presidents as “graduates” of Harvard: John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Theodore and Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Rutherford B. Hayes, John F. Kennedy and George W. Bush, and noted that the faculty has produced more than 40 Nobel Laureates.
The Harbus would like to add current U.S. President and 2009 Nobel Peace Prize recipient Barack Obama-who graduated from Harvard Law School in 1991-to the list. First Lady Michelle also earned her Juris Doctor from Harvard Law as a member of the class of 1988.
President Obama was reported as being very surprised and humbled in receiving news of his selection as the 2009 recipient. The Norway-based Nobel committee conferred the award “for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.” The committee placed special significance on Obama’s vision for and efforts toward nuclear disarmament and his diplomatic and dialogue-based leadership style in representing the United States.
Only two other U.S. Presidents have ever been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize while in office. Theodore Roosevelt won the 1906 Nobel Peace Prize for his role in bringing an end to the war between Russia and Japan, and Woodrow Wilson was awarded the 1919 Nobel Peace Prize for the Treaty of Versailles.
Established in 1901, the Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded 90 times to 120 Laureates-organizations or individuals who have done the most in the previous year to enhance peace in the world. Henry Dunant, founder of the Red Cross, shared the inaugural Nobel Peace Prize in 1901 with Frédéric Passy, a leading pacifist. Past recipients also include Al Gore (2007), Nelson Mandela (1993), and Mother Teresa (1979).