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College by Dr. Dre

College by Dr. Dre

What would you do with a degree in "disruption?"

Elizabeth Hoyt

June 13, 2013

What if you could get a degree in disruption? Now you can at the University of Southern California, thanks to Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young (aka Dr. Dre).

The music moguls donated $70 million to LA-based USC to develop an undergraduate program, dubbed The Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation.

According to the web site, the goal of the academy is to “inspire innovative, entrepreneurial thought in business, design, marketing and the arts.”

Curriculum will focus on “innovation and conceptual thinking” in hopes to “empower the next generation of disruptive leaders and professional thought leaders across a multitude of global industries.”

The academy will also allow students to learn from “industry icons and innovators as visiting faculty and guest speakers,” in addition to USC’s faculty.

USC President, C.L.Max Nikias released a statement saying that, “The vision and generosity of Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young will profoundly influence the way all of us perceive and experience artistic media. USC provides an extraordinarily rich academic, research and artistic environment. We are committed to encouraging our students to use their intellectual and creative resources to effect change in all segments of society. Our goal is to ensure that the academy is the most collaborative educational program in the world.”

The four-year academy will begin enrollment, starting with 25 students, in the fall of 2014. Applicants will be chosen for “demonstrated academic excellence as well as proven ability for original thought.”

With big names comes big tuition. The academy is $43,000 per semester, which makes one wonder if you’re guaranteed tycoon status upon graduation.

While some of the curriculum is clear, other descriptions are slightly vague, causing one to wonder what industry secrets one could possibly learn for $43,000 per semester.

The school has specially designed the curriculum to span four key areas, detailed below.

1. Arts and Entrepreneurship – Under this area of core curriculum, students will have courses on The Entrepreneurial Mindset, Cases in Entrepreneurship, Evolution of the Music Industry, Design Elements, Design Theory and Inventions and Patents.

2. Technology, Design and Marketability – Under this area of core curriculum, students will have courses on Creativity, Developing, Managing and Marketing Radical Innovations, Music Capture, Rapid Visualization (2-D and 3-D) and Digital Design.

3. Concept and Business Platforms – Under this area of core curriculum, students will have courses on Music Delivery Systems, Advanced Methods in 2-D and 3-D Visualization, Consumer Behavior and Marketing, Managing New Enterprises and Feasibility Analysis.

4. Creating a Prototype – Under this area of core curriculum, students will live amongst one another in a space referred to as “The Garage,” where they will be grouped into self-directing teams. They will “determine a project that can be developed into a prototype over the course of the year,” according to the web site.

If you don’t already know, Jimmy Iovine is the Chairman of Universal Music Group’s Interscope Geffen A&M records unit. He co-founded Interscope records in 1990, signing artists like Lady Gaga, Nine Inch Nails, No Doubt, Marilyn Manson, The Black Eyed Peas, 50 Cent, Eminem and, of course, Dr. Dre.

He’s also the co-founder of Beats Electronic (with Dr. Dre) and one of the most prominent and respected executives within the music industry. Iovine has been around the block, so to speak, working with the likes of music icons like John Lennon, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty, U2 and Stevie Nicks, just to name a few.

Dr. Dre is a man that likely needs no introduction. Born Andre Young, Dre is not only an artist but a producer and entrepreneur as well. In addition to his critically-acclaimed albums, Dre has discovered and/or produced albums for many of the hip-hop stars of this generation, like Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar and Eminem, many through Aftermath Entertainment, a record label Dre launched in 1996.

In 2008, Dre partnered with Iovine to launch Beats by Dr. Dre, which holds an impressive 40 percent market share in the headphone industry. After incorporating the BeatsAudio into the iPod doc, the Beats by Dr. Dre label later partnered with HP to integrate BeatsAudio into their HP Envy notebooks.

There’s no doubt these men have what it takes to make it in the music industry, but what about the education sector?

Whether or not this school will flop or create impactful minds of the future has yet to be seen. One thing, however, is certain: when searching for a job with a degree in “disruption,” academy graduates definitely won’t forget about Dre.

What are your thoughts on paying $43k a semester for a degree in disruption?

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    almost 3 years ago



    This is the most Absurd thing I have ever heard of in my life! USC should be ASHAMED to associate itself with such Wordplay, Nonsense, Ignorance, Trickery, Deception, and Degeneracy!

    I was offered a scholarship to USC Music School back in the 80's and my cousin graduated from USC when it appeared to uphold the traditions of integrity and decency. I eventually attended Loyola University and thus later graduated from Southeastern Louisiana University with a degree in Business/Management.

    I am ashamed to think that this Historic University is "selling out" to Miscreants, masquerading as "moguls," who are swinging a sledgehammer of money in the face of the unsuspecting future leaders of our good and great planet, who have no knowledge of the esoteric implications that this so-called curriculum entails.

    According to the Random House Webster's College Dictionary/Published by: Random House New York - Copyright 1997 p. 379 the word "Disruptive" is an adjective form of the word "Disrupt," which is a verb that means: 1. To cause disorder or turmoil. 2. To destroy, usu. temporarily, the normal continuance or unity of; interrupt: to disrupt broadcasting. 3. To break apart; to disrupt a connection. 4. Broken apart; disrupted.

    What in the world, and why in this world would you want to educate people on how to become this; which by the way is in now way POSITIVE behavior or knowledge. This is all counter productive to a decent, moral, and civilized society which you claim to uphold as your traditional standards for decency, or is that simply propaganda and rhetoric? Well USC, it's time to put your money where your mouth is, either "shut up, or pay up!" Who are you USC?

    As you can see, there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING POSITIVE about creating a curriculum based upon the principles of "disruption." Only a miseducated, uneducated, and misguided fool, who has done nothing but contribute to the degradation and disintegration of the moral fabric of our society and children would come up with such an absurd concept! That FOOL is your heralded Dr. Dre! Did he even go to College? Did he ever earn a Degree from any College????

    I stand alone and challenge ALL who will be bold enough to stand in the face of the Creator and attempt to usurp his absolute sovereignty and POWER by preying upon his future little ones!

    USC, you should be ashamed of your affiliation and association with inferiority. Time to take a stand...which side are you on? Choose ye this day who you shall serve!

    BTW…I am also in the Music Business!

    The Little Lion's whelp who has been "stirred up!"