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Most college students look forward to receiving advice from a celebrity commencement speaker after finishing their schoolwork, but some university admits received greetings from a couple famous faces before they even enrolled — and from none other than Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the longtime friends, collaborators and business partners — Iovine is currently chairman of Interscope Geffen A&M Records; he and rapper-producer Dre also co-founded Beats Electronics — are the stars of a pre-recorded video message sent to newly-admitted students. The two established the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation, after their $70 million donation last year and are welcoming its inaugural class this fall.
With a subject line reading “A message from dean Erica Muhl,” a link in the email leads to a video message, recorded in a Santa Monica studio: “The Trojan family is excited to offer you a spot in the class of 2018,” says Dre (aka Andre Young), as Iovine adds, “We think you’re going to do great here.”
The welcoming video greeting is especially appropriate, since applicants to their degree program had to submit a short outlining an idea for an original product, service or system. The undergraduate curriculum aims to give USC students “a unique undergraduate experience” focused on four areas: arts and entrepreneurship; technology, design and marketability; concept and business platforms; and creating a prototype.
The program will emphasize technology, and also include faculty from the USC Marshall School of Business, Roski School of Fine Arts, Viterbi School of Engineering and Thornton School of Music. A selected group of students will be offered 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. The academy’s inaugural class will enroll 25 students in fall 2014.
Besides, Iovine and Dre already delivered USC’s commencement address last May.
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