Scheduled to be announced by Dre (whose given name is Andre Young) and Iovine on Wednesday in Santa Monica, 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 vision and generosity of Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young will profoundly influence the way all of us perceive and experience artistic media,” USC PresidentC.L. Max Nikias said in a statement. “Our goal is to ensure that the academy is the most collaborative educational program in the world.”
Dre, Iovine and Nikias declined to be interviewed before the announcement, a USC spokesman said.
An unspecified portion of the $70-million donation will go toward construction of facilities that will house the academy. Students, who can earn an undergraduate degree from the academy, will use existing facilities while new ones are being built.
The four-year program will feature four core curriculum areas: arts and entrepreneurship; technology, design and marketability; concept and business platform; and creating a prototype. It aims to foster entrepreneurship that brings students’ entertainment, technology and business skills into play. Instruction will involve engineering, computer science, fine arts, graphic design, business and leadership training.
That training will come from faculty at USC’sThornton School of Music, Roski School of Fine Arts, Marshall School of Business and Viterbi School of Engineering, as well as “industry icons and innovators as visiting faculty and guest speakers,” according to USC’s statement.
“Academy students will have the freedom to move easily from classroom to lab, from studio to workshop individually or in groups, and blow past any academic or structural barriers to spontaneous creativity,” Erica Muhl, dean of the fine arts school, said in a statement. Muhl will serve as the first director of the new academy.
The outline of the program appears to create an academic counterpart to the street-smart path Iovine and Young have traveled in building their careers.