Bill Gates’ kids might have been born into one of the wealthiest families in the world, but they won’t be inheriting much of that fortune.
Gates plans on giving it away. His children will get a small slice of the pie, but the rest is going to charity.
Right now, Gates is dedicating his time, money, and resources to combatting COVID-19. He recently invested in the Oxford vaccine, which looks promising.
But, what about those kids we mentioned earlier?
The Gates family tends to stay private, with much of the focus on Bill himself, but Sidelines Magazine recently conducted an interview with Jennifer Gates, his oldest daughter, providing some insight into family life in the Gates household.
Growing up in one of the world’s wealthiest families definitely has its perks, and Jennifer Gates — Bill Gates’ oldest daughter — recognizes that.
“I was born into a huge situation of privilege,” 24-year-old Gates, who goes by the nickname Jenn, told Sidelines Magazine.
“I think it’s about using those opportunities and learning from them to find things that I’m passionate about and hopefully make the world a little bit of a better place.”
Bill Gates became the richest man in the world in 1995, one year before Jenn was born. Back then, his net worth was around $12,9 billion.
He’s currently the second richest person in the world, after Jeff Bezos.
As an aside, if you want to get to grips with exactly how much Bezos earns, and how quickly he earns it, use this calculator. Just make sure you’re sitting down for the result.
Back to Jenn and how she plans on using her wealth for good.
[Jenn plans on pursuing] a career in medicine, perhaps as a paediatrician or family practitioner. After graduating from Stanford University in 2018, Gates is now heading into her second year as a medical student at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City. (The New York Post reported that Bill and Melinda bought Gates a $5 million home on Fifth Avenue adjacent to the campus in 2017.)
Jenn says that her parents, who routinely bring their work home, influenced her decision to become a doctor.
After her parents founded the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, whose mission is to improve the health and quality of life of people around the world, “I grew up hearing about children’s mortality at the dinner table, about polio, about the HIV/AIDS epidemic,” Gates said.
When she was a kid, her mom even caught her informing one of her dolls that it was HIV positive. (That’s when Melinda decided she and Bill were talking “too much about global health at the dinner table,” Gates said.)
Apart from her studies in medicine, Jenn is also an accomplished equestrian who took time off after Stanford to ride competitively. She says that her parents are very supportive of her decisions and goals.
“They’ve always had my back,” she told Sidelines. “When I was younger, they told me to pursue whatever it was I was interested in, whether it was math or science or reading or writing. I always felt like I really had a good foundation with them believing in me and being willing to support me in any of my pursuits.”
She says Bill and Melinda are incredibly hardworking people.
“They’ve obviously had a lot of privilege, but they continue learning and are passionate about making the world a better place.” The Gates’ foundation, for example, has contributed more than $50 billion to global health and development, U.S. education and other causes to date, including $335 million to fight Covid-19.
“I think that’s really cool, and it has definitely rubbed off on me as I find my way towards my own passions,” Gates said.
She also mentioned that Bill makes TikTok videos with her, and yes, we tracked one down:
Despite being insanely busy, Gates is a very hands-on father.
At The New York Times DealBook event in November, Bill admitted he relies on his kids (Jenn Gates has siblings Rory, 21, and Phoebe, 17) to help him keep cool and humble.
He said he likes to drive them to school and tries to communicate with each of them via their “preferred” social media platform instead of through email, which he prefers.
“I’ve got to check Instagram because my youngest daughter likes to communicate there [and] I have to check WhatsApp because another child likes to communicate through that,” Gates said.
It sounds, despite the billions, like a relatively normal household.
Jenn has made a name for herself, independent of her parents, but having that kind of financial backing definitely opens doors.
Good for her.
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