Is Dr Dre heading back to college? He sure is with a 70 million dollar investment.
Rapper and entertainment mogul Dr. Dre and Interscope Records honcho Jimmy Iovine are donating $70 million to USC to create a new arts, technology and business program. The new academy will give students new facilities and the tools they need to break into the rapidly changing music industry.
The donation will establish the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation. The four-year undergraduate program aims to foster entrepreneurship and bridge entertainment, engineering, computer science, fine arts, graphic design, business and leadership training. The first class of 25 will be enrolled in the fall of 2014.
“The vision and generosity of Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young will profoundly influence the way all of us perceive and experience artistic media,” USC President C.L. Max Nikias said in a statement. “Our goal is to ensure that the academy is the most collaborative educational program in the world.”
Iovine and Dre, who called the program “a steppingstone to something,” told The New York Times that they came up with the idea when they were trying to find people to work for their then newly-created Beats company. There was a need for more talented employees, they said.
As Dr. Dre first was launched into the music business through rap super group, N.W.A and he went on to launching Death Row Records, Aftermath Entertainment and Beats by Dre. Dr Dre is a world-class producer that discovered and produced Snoop Dog, Eminem, 50 Cent, The Game and countless others.
Jimmy Iovine is the chairman of Interscope Geffen A&M Records. Jimmy Iovine is responsible of the careers of many artists including Eminem, 50 Cent, No Doubt, Marilyn Manson, Blink 182, John Lennon, U2, Black Eyed Peas, Lady GaGa, The Pussycat Dolls, ETC.
USC has a history of cultivating strategic relationships with the entertainment industry and a number of its leading practitioners. In 2009, for example, George Lucas’ Lucasfilm Foundation gave $75 million toward construction of new facilities for the USC School of Cinematic Arts, plus $100 million for the school’s endowment. Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox and Disney have also donated to the school.