Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine team up for an educational project. The rap mogul and the record producer, who join forces creating immensely-successful company for headphone line Beats by Dr. Dre which now expands into creating many forms of electronic devices including laptop, have made a $70M donation to create an academy at University of Southern California.
The Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation provides a four-year program for undergraduates who have keen interests in arts and business training. The first class of 25 students will enter in fall 2014. Full scholarships are available to financially-disadvantage student to help them "go on to do something that could potentially change the world."
The two visited the USC campus on Monday, May 13. Wearing a T-shirt, fitted jeans and baseball cap, 60-year-old Iovine told New York Times, "If the next start-up that becomes Facebook happens to be one of our kids, that's what we are looking for." It didn't matter if it's the next Gwen Stefani whom he signed at 19, he said, or it's the next Marissa Mayer. "Talent is talent," he stated.
Dre, meanwhile, stated that "never in a million years" as a young artist he imagined he would help start a university program. Both he and Iovine were far from familiar with the world of academia. In fact, neither went to college. "I feel like this is the biggest, most exciting and probably the most important thing that I've done in my career," the rapper gushed.
Iovine discovered Dre when he was just Andre Young, who in turn mentored Eminem and 50 Cent among many other artists. The now business partners acknowledged of their ambitious plan but they were not afraid of taking chances. "We have no idea where this is going," Iovine said, to which Dre added, "It's definitely a steppingstone to something."