With “California Love” playing in the background, Dr. Dre joined Compton school and community leaders this weekend to open a new campus for Compton High School worth $ 200 million.
Dr. Dre, whose real name is Andre Young, has donated $ 10 million to the new performing arts school center, which can accommodate more than 900 people. The facility will be called “Andre ‘Dr. Dre “Young Performing Arts Center,” according to the Compton Unified School District.
“I was an art kid at school with no way out of it,” he said at Saturday’s foundation laying ceremony. “I knew I had something special to offer the world, but without anything to support my gift, the schools left me feeling unseen.”
A pioneering rapper, whose net worth is estimated at hundreds of millions of dollars after he sold Beats Electronics to Apple Inc. for $ 3 billion, he often talked about what a lack of education meant to him. He, along with music industry mogul Jimmy Iovine, co-founder of Beats Electronics, is also opening a public school of magnets in southern LA this fall. The two also donated $ 70 million to USC to create a new academy.
Dr. Dre attended nearby Centennial High before moving to Fremont High in southern LA, but eventually dropped out of school.
“I always wondered how far I could have gone if the resources I needed at school were available,” he said at the ceremony. “If I had learned more about the business industry, I would have been saved [an] extreme amount of time, money and most importantly, [made] a lot of friendships. ”
The Compton resident spoke at length about what his hometown meant to him, even though he no longer lived there. The city was the place where Dr. Dre and others launched the NWA, whose debut album is called “Straight Outta Compton”. Dr. Dre has pledged to donate royalties from his 2015 album “Compton” to help fund the Center for the Performing Arts.
“This city is special, and the young people who live in it are special,” Dr. Dre said at the ceremony.
The new campus for the 126-year-old school will include more than a new academic building that can serve up to 1,800 students, with the possibility of adding another 450 students, as well as a new gym, water sports center, football stadium and track. The rest of the project was financed through the district bond measure adopted in 2015.
“This new campus that will be built will be built on the deep roots and extraordinary achievements that have been established for decades,” the school’s principal, Rigoberto Roman, said at the ceremony. “Let us embrace this change for the sake of our future and the future of our children. This is the kind of change that needs to be celebrated. ”
The opening of the new campus is scheduled for the beginning of 2025.