People have been known to embellish their resume, but many New Yorkers have been caught downright lying about where they went to college.

A new study looking into the top faked resume on universities found the college New Yorkers pretend to have graduated from most.

Graduates wear a black hat to stand for congratulations on graduation
Photo Credit - nirat/Think Stock

Shockingly, it appears the Empire State didn't reach for the stars and claim they went to Princeton or Yale... or any Ivy League school for that matter.

Liar, Liar...

Crazy to think more than half of job seekers have admittedly lied on their resumes. It was recently found that 52% of those who applied for a job have exaggerated their qualifications at some point.

While some bolster their experience to look more qualified for a job, others have admittedly lied about where they obtained a college education in hopes of scoring a fatter paycheck.

Read More: NY College Crowned Nation's Best "Value For Money" University

With that in mind, a new study by looked into which colleges have the most fake graduates in the job market.

They posed a hypothetical question to 3,000 job applicants: If you were to lie about a college you had attended on your resume, which would it be?

While Harvard was the #1 answer on a national level, New Yorkers were a little more deceptive. Instead of fibbing about going to the top university, they went with something a little more believable.

What Was New York's Top Faked University?

Amazingly enough, while a good amount of respondents admitted they would falsely claim they graduated from Harvard and Stanford, New Yorkers chose something less flashy.

Graduation hat with degree paper on a stack of book

The University of Washington, which is a public, 4-year school, was the Empire State's top pick. With an admission rate of 54.5 percent as of 2021, New Yorkers seemed to bank on prospective employers believing they went to this Seattle-based institute.

In fact, the University of Washington was one of the top picks in all the continental U.S. with a 3rd place finish.

Read More: 5 Things All Central NY College Freshmen Should Know

The school beat out Princeton, MIT, Notre Dame and other decorated universities.

Said USDictionary:

This Pacific Northwest gem is a blend of academic prestige, top-tier research opportunities, and a campus life that's teeming with innovation. Its location in Seattle gives students access to a thriving tech hub—hello, future employers like Amazon and Microsoft! Plus, let's not forget those iconic cherry blossoms that make even a simple walk to class Instagram-worthy. So, it's no surprise that so many fantasize about having the Husky experience on their resume.

Resume Fakers Opt for Public Universities over Ivy League Legends

Several state universities wound up beating famed colleges like Johns Hopkins, Vanderbilt, Dartmouth and Cornell in this "Universities Most Likely to Be Fabricated on Resumes" list.

You would think that if one was willing to lie about their education on their resume, they'd try to go with the flashiest name possible. But that didn't appear to be the case in 2023.

The University of California's Los Angeles and Berkeley campuses came in respective sixth and seventh place on the roundup while the University of Pennsylvania came eighth overall.

The University of Virginia came in ninth place.

Read More: These New York Law Schools Produce Nation's Top-Earning Grads

As for why these resume liars opted to not claim to be from an academic heavy-hitter, the pollster offered:

It's possible that the modern job seeker, in a bid to stand out, is looking for a fresher, less expected name to embellish their resume.

USDictionary also offered that resume fabricators are also considering what colleges will definitely get them caught in a lie. Perhaps it is easier to lie about going to a large, public college instead of an extremely competitive tech school like MIT.

Said Shaun Connell of

While our survey unearthed some light-hearted revelations about the universities job seekers might be tempted to falsely claim, it's vital to underline a foundational truth: integrity remains paramount in professional endeavors. Embellishing a resume might offer short-term gains, but the long-term consequences can be detrimental, eroding trust and credibility. Authenticity not only fosters genuine relationships but also ensures that one's professional journey is built on a foundation of truth and merit.

Either way, New York liars would rather claim they obtained their degree from the other side of the nation instead of all the swanky, world-rated colleges right here in our backyard.


Would you lie about where you went to college if it meant scoring you a better paying job?

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