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7 of the World's Weirdest Schools

There just may be a school out there for whatever you're passionate about.


Whether you want to become a master gelatiere, a marijuana entrepreneur or craftsman clown, there are a number of niche schools that will help jumpstart your career.

Related: Doing These 7 Things Can Help Jump-Start Your Startup Career

From a hamburgerology diploma from McDonald’s Hamburger University to a Master Clown Award from the Northeast Clown Institute, here are seven of the weirdest schools from around the world.

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Carpigiani Gelato University

While its name says it all, at Carpigiani Gelato University in Bologna, Italy, students learn to become “gelato masters.” In fact, through its four-week intensive training program, students learn the craft of gelato-making in order to eventually open up their own gelato shops. Launched in 2013, people from around the world flock to the school’s “Become a Gelatiere” program to receive their “Master Gelatiere” certificates and learn what it takes to craft the perfect gelato.
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Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service

While it’s about as niche as it gets, Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service provides students with the necessary knowledge and education they need to excel in the mortuary business. With its primary goal of showing students the importance of funeral service by studying members in the community, bereaved families, regulatory guidelines and the safety and welfare of human remains, the Atlanta-based school offers students the opportunity to receive a state-accredited diploma in funeral service.

Related: How Flight School was Perfect Training for Entrepreneurship

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Hamburger University

Not only is there such thing as a Hamburger University, it’s run by fast food chain McDonald’s. With seven campuses worldwide, including in Oak Brook, Ill., Tokyo, London, Sydney, Munich, Sao Paulo and Shanghai, the school offers an intensive educational program where students can earn a Hamburgerology degree and 23 credits towards an associate’s or bachelor’s degree at one of 1,600 universities in the U.S. The university, founded in 1961 with nearly 300,000 graduates since, is tough to get into. The training program at Hamburger University in Shanghai is more competitive than Harvard, with a 1 percent acceptance rate.
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Northeast Clown Institute

Forget books and backpacks, at the Northeast Clown Institute, you’ll need a red nose and some white face paint. With more than 33 instructors, the institute seeks to help anyone interested in clowning develop and perfect their craft. Often referred to as simply “Clown College,” the school offers a weekend-long intensive program where first, second and third-year students are taught by acclaimed clowns and later graded on a points basis. Depending on the amount of points they receive, they can earn a Craftsman Clown Award or a Master Clown Award.
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Social Media College

If you want to put those hours on Instagram to good use, check out Social Media College. While its name is pretty self-explanatory, Social Media College gives out formal government-accredited diplomas to students upon completion of the program. Based in Australia, classes are available online and in person. The program aims to teach students how to keep up to date with social media, how to use it in business and ultimately, jumpstart their career.

Related: 8 Tips for Entrepreneurial High School Students Ready to Start Their First Businesses

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College of Renewable Energy

Want to be the next Elon Musk? A good place to start might be Colorado-based Ecotech Institute’s College of Renewable Energy, which seeks to train students in renewable energy, sustainability and energy efficiency. The nationally accredited school offers a nine-month program with diplomas in solar energy, wind energy, power utility technology or electronics technology.
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Oaksterdam University

Labeled “America’s first Cannabis college,” Oaksterdam University offers rigorous training to students to succeed in the rapidly growing cannabis industry. Launched in 2007 in Oakland, Calif., OU offers two primary courses including horticulture and classic business, which gives students an overview of the industry with a focus on business management, product development and legal issues. OU offers students a certificate of achievement for successfully completing any of its programs, and so far, with a faculty of more than 150, it has graduated more than 30,000 students from more than 30 countries.