In my opinion, there is no better place for a young MC to be than a college campus. College is full of young talent and kids with money who enjoy spending it on their entertainment. Plus, you have a plethora of resources available. So in FlipNBirds style we came up with a list of the Top 5 Colleges for rappers. The rankings were based on programs, access to music industry resources, education and alumni.
University of Southern California
U.S.C. has an Epic Music Business program that almost walks students directly into every major label. Trojans have access to limitless resources, it’s not uncommon for students to have internships at nationally renown studios. A student at U.S.C. will meet 10-25 industry key holders while enrolled. I’m not talking interns either, these kids rub shoulders with the bosses, the Mike Caren’s, the Jimmy Iovine’s etc. Plus the Music Business Program gives those students the unique balance of having extensive knowledge of the creation of music and a deep understanding of the business. To add to that U.S.C. has some of the wealthiest and well-connected college students in the country. A solid 4 years of grinding out there and a young MC should graduate with a major buzz.
Notable Alumni: Shawn Crystopher, Romeo “Lil Romeo” Miller
New York University
New York University has to be the best located college for any aspiring rapper. Located in the heart of hip hop’s mecca being enrolled at N.Y.U. greatly increases your chances for music success. This schools College station has a bigger audience than many mid major market radio stations. Building a buzz on this campus is the golden ticket, Def Jam is right up the street, Atlantic is around the corner. Artists are around everyday, plus the student body at N.Y.U. is one of the wealthiest. These kids have major guap and major connections. My advice to you rappers in high school, hit your books because it’s gonna be hard to survive out there without a scholarship, especially if your out-of-state. But if you still have time get that g.p.a. up to around a 3.3-3.7, join a couple of clubs and that may get you ticket to NYU.
Notable Alumni: Talib Kweli, Q-Tip, Alchemist
Florida A&M University
Florida A&M University may have the strongest hip hop alumni of any college in America. This school has a diverse student body from all over and students here cling to Indy Music. FAMU played a large role in T. Pain building his buzz in Florida. Students at Florida A&M benefit from accessibility more than students at other schools. Because Tallahassee in a smaller market it’s easier for students to network with people at Radio. And because most of the music industry keyholders in Tallahassee are Alumni of Florida A&M there is a support system in place for student artists.
Notable Alumni: Common, Needlez, Dead Prez, Rico Love, Serious Jones, T.J. Chapman, E.Clipz(English),
Howard is serious business, located in D.C. which is growing into a hip hop hot spot, this commuter school attracts students from across the country. The good thing about Howard is the constant flow of artists and industry key holders on campus. Everyone stops by Howard, the Homecoming there is legendary. Additionally, it is in close proximity to many major markets so you can build a nice buzz and start touring out of Howard.
Notable Alumni: Shawn Combs
Georgia State University
Georgia State is located in The Heart of Atlanta. With Atlanta being saturated with hip hop stars Georgia State is a great place to be. Not only is this school great academically, they also provide their students phenomenal networking opportunities. Building a buzz on this campus can lead to national recognition.
Notable Alumni: Ludacris