The University of Southern California just increased its appeal as one of the top, hippest, and most popular colleges to attend when news surfaced on Tuesday night that music industry moguls Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine of Interscope Records have donated $70 million to Troy for a new academy geared towards preparing students to breaking into the ever-evolving music industry.
USC will make this historic donation from Iovine and Dr. Dre (whose given name is Andre Young) official on Wednesday; earlier in the week university president C. L. Max Nikias sent out an email to students alluding to the new endeavor, with the formal announcement set for 11 a.m. on campus at Tommy Trojan.
Per the LATimes, “the gift will establish the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation. The academy will open with an inaugural class of 25 students in fall 2014.”
The academy will mold students in the fields as marketing, business entrepreneurship, computer science and engineering, audio and visual design and the arts, all of which are pivotal for making it in today’s music industry.
The curriculum specifically focuses on four areas: arts and entrepreneurship; technology, design and marketability; concept and business platforms; and creating a prototype, according to a release from USC. To accomplish all of this, the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy of Arts will feature faculty and technology from the USC Marshall School of Business, Roski School of Fine Arts, Viterbi School of Engineering and Thornton School of Music. A distinguished group of students will be chosen to participate in “an integrated, four‑year interdisciplinary course of study capped off in the final year with an experiential setting called the “Garage,” which will challenge the students with a year-long project.”
President Nikias spoke positively of this new partnership in an official statement: “The vision and generosity of Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young will profoundly influence the way all of us perceive and experience artistic media,” he said. “Our goal is to ensure that the academy is the most collaborative educational program in the world.”
In addition to the esteemed USC faculty, the academy will feature prominent music industry “icons and innovators” that will serve as speakers and will work with the students to help them hone their craft.
Some of the $70 million will go towards a new building for the academy, though an amount has yet to be specified.
Iovine–known for co-founding Interscope Records and serving as a chairman of Interscope Geffen A&M–is also scheduled to be USC’s commencement speaker on May 17.
USC already boasted alumni and contributors like George Lucas, Robert Zemeckis, Steven Spielberg and Arnold Schwarzenegger from the USC School of Cinematic Arts, not to mention a number of other notable names contributing to other programs in Troy. With two of the most powerful people in the music industry now making their mark on campus, the Trojans are certainly making a push to be the most talked-about school in Los Angeles.
Only fitting, with guys like Lane Kiffin and Andy Enfield headlining in athletics.