Here's what the 2020 Democratic presidential contenders looked like in their school-age days

Elizabeth Warren high school debateElizabeth Warren, née Herring, with her debate partner Karl JohnsonElizabeth for MA

  • Seven Democratic candidates have jumped into the field for president in 2020. 
  • Four out of the seven declared candidates attended an Ivy League university, five have law degrees, and one is a Rhodes scholar.
  • Here's what the declared Democratic candidates looked like in their school-age days. 

Seven Democratic presidential contenders have jumped into the field so far - and they come from markedly different backgrounds. 

They grew up in places as far-flung as Hawaii, Texas, and upstate New York - attending a mix of private school, public schools, and home-school.

Four out of the seven declared candidates attended an Ivy League university, five have law degrees, and one is a Rhodes scholar.

One of the candidates, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, was elected to serve in the Hawaii state legislature and completed two overseas deployments in the US Army before earning a bachelor's degree from Hawaii Pacific University. 

Here's what all the Democratic presidential contenders looked like in high school, college, or grad school: 

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Sen. Kamala Harris earned a law degree from Hastings College of Law — and invited one of her elementary school teachers to her graduation.

Sen. Kamala Harris earned a law degree from Hastings College of Law — and invited one of her elementary school teachers to her graduation.

"Growing up, the first question asked of me at the dinner table was, 'what did you learn at school today?' Thanks to my beloved first grade teacher, Mrs. Frances Wilson at Thousand Oaks Elementary School in Berkeley, I always had an answer I was anxious to share," Harris wrote.

"Mrs. Wilson was deeply committed to her students...she stayed in touch with many of us throughout our lives, and when I graduated from Hastings College of the Law, Mrs. Wilson was in the audience," she added.

After graduating from San Antonio's Thomas Jefferson High School, Julian and Joaquin Castro both went on to Stanford University and Harvard Law School.

After graduating from San Antonio's Thomas Jefferson High School, Julian and Joaquin Castro both went on to Stanford University and Harvard Law School.

“They were regular kids, but at the same time you knew they were going to do something great. They were very smart," former chemistry teacher Carita Thomas told Texas Public Radio.

"They knew they wanted to finish school. And they knew they wanted to finish college," she added.

After graduating from law school, both brothers returned to San Antonio and went into public service. Joaquin became a Texas state legislator and is now a member of Congress.

Julian served as mayor of San Antonio, was secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Barack Obama, and is now running for president.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard made history as the youngest person elected to the Hawaii State Legislature at age 21.

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard made history as the youngest person elected to the Hawaii State Legislature at age 21.

Gabbard was elected to represent District 42 in West O'ahu in 2002 when she was just 21 years old.

During her time in the state legislature, she advocated for clean energy and environmental protections. She left the legislature in 2004 to join the Hawaii National Guard, but later returned to politics after two overseas deployments, serving on the Honolulu City Council before being elected to Congress.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand studied abroad in China while a student at Dartmouth College — and roomed with now-famous "Nashville" actress Connie Britton.

South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg was a Rhodes scholar at Oxford University.

South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg was a Rhodes scholar at Oxford University.

Buttigieg got off to a rough start when he was "ejected" from an economics class at Oxford for "lack of preparation," but managed to redeem himself.

“I was terrified. This had never happened to me,” Buttigieg, a high school valedictorian and Phi Beta Kappa inductee at Harvard University, recalled to The North American Pembrokian. He committed himself to the discipline of economics, earning himself a "nice job" commendation at the end of the term.

"One of the toughest parts during that time,” he said, “was trying to ignore all the folks having fun singing and drinking" at a bar across from his room.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren was a champion debater at Northwest Classen high school in Oklahoma City.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren was a champion debater at Northwest Classen high school in Oklahoma City.

Warren's debate partner Karl Johnson described her as "very smart" and "very articulate." Her teammate Joe Pyror said, "if she went into something, she went all in."

Warren's passion for argumentation and logic stayed with her.

She won a debate scholarship to George Washington University and attended Rutgers Law School. She went on to become a law professor at the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard, and is now a US senator and presidential candidate.

Rep. John Delaney married his law school sweetheart.

Rep. John Delaney married his law school sweetheart.

"My amazing wife, April, and I met as law students at Georgetown University – I’ll never regret rearranging my entire class schedule just to make sure I was in all the same classes as the smart, beautiful first-year law student from Idaho," Delaney wrote on his campaign website.

After graduating from law school, Delaney founded two successful businesses and was elected to Congress in 2012.

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