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Bill Gates Urges Students to Tackle the World's Biggest Problems

By Elias J. Groll and William N. White, Crimson Staff Writers

Microsoft founder Bill Gates called on the nation's brightest young people to use their talents to engage with the world's biggest problems in an address to a packed Sanders Theatre this afternoon.

While he took care to not disparage those who enter high-paying careers directly after graduation, Gates said that the greatest impact will be made by those who devote their lives to fighting poverty, improving global health, and raising the standard of education.

"A lot of talent—a lot of the best minds—are going to sports or entertainment or investing or even to scientific innovation that is focused on the specific needs of the rich," Gates said. "When you work on a baldness drug, it’s a little bit different than working on a malaria drug."

The address was part of Gates' cross-country university tour, during which he spoke to students on five college campuses in California, Chicago, and Boston.

Gates, Harvard's most successful dropout, left the College in 1975, during his sophomore year.

—Staff writer Elias J. Groll can be reached at egroll@fas.harvard.edu.

—Staff writer William N. White can be reached at wwhite@fas.harvard.edu.

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