After the phenomenal success of their Beats by Dre headphones (which reportedly makes a billion dollars in sales per year) it seems that Interscope man Jimmy Iovine and producer Dr. Dre have their sights set on a different kind of business venture. The duo have committed to a donation of $70 million to the University of Southern California, an institution which interestingly enough is only mere miles from Dre’s beloved Compton. The donation will fund a brand new degree program, which aims to combine liberal arts, product design, marketing and business skills.
Apparently what led the duo to this path was simply necessity, as in expanding the company after its initial success Dre and Iovine had trouble finding employees of the right caliber. Iovine noted “It came out of us trying to find people to work for us,”, and he hopes that at some point the program might lead the right minds to the Beats empire, which now includes a streaming service as well as the unavoidable headphones.
$70 million might only be a drop in the ocean in the world of top-end universities which can make up to a billion dollars per year in donations, but it’s encouraging to see Dre and Iovine doing something constructive with their wheelbarrows of cash. With a selection of scholarship programs, which are absolutely crucial in the US where degrees can cost a family upwards of $50,000, the money is able to actually change someone’s life, and who knows maybe that someone could design a sturdier pair of headphones. [via New York Times]