Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine

Gift will establish the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation

Music exec Jimmy Iovine and rap titan Dr. Dre are donating $70 million to the University of Southern California to endow a new arts, technology and business academy.

The gift will establish the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation, a multi-disciplinary undergraduate enclave for students whose interests span such fields as marketing, entrepreneurship, computer science and engineering, audio-visual design and the arts.

Iovine is chairman of Universal Music Group’s Interscope Geffen A&M Records division. He is partnered in Beats Electronics, the consumer electronics and home audio firm, with Dr. Dre (Andre Young), the Compton-bred ex-member of rap group N.W.A. , rap solo star, top producer and Aftermath Entertainment founder. Beats markets the Beats By Dre headphone line and the HP Envy notebook.

Focusing on four curriculum areas – arts and entrepreneurship; technology, design and marketability; concept and business platforms; and creating a prototype – the four year program will climax with a fourth-year residency in a new experiential setting, the “Garage,” which will be the site of a self-directed prototype development project.

Four USC schools will participate in the new academic entity: the USC Roski School of Fine Arts, the USC Marshall School of Business, the USC Thornton School of Music and the USC Viterbi School of Engineering.

The academy on USC’s downtown LA. campus will enroll its first class of 25 students in the fall of 2014.

Roski School dean Erica Muhl, who will act as inaugural director of the USC Iovine & Young Academy, said in a statement, “Flexibility is a hallmark of USC, and the academy’s curriculum is incredibly adaptive. The curriculum was created to take full advantage of a newly designed, revolutionary education space that will offer students very powerful tools. Academy students will have the freedom to move easily from classroom to labe, from studio to workshop individually or in groups, and blow past any academic or structural barriers to spontaneous creativity.”

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