Hip Hop And Higher Education Symposium

Thursday, Apr. 4 & Friday, Apr. 5, $10

William Peace University, Raleigh

Following in the tradition of longstanding festivals like SXSW and A3C, the Dreamville Festival is including an educational component in its first—hopefully, annual—outing. 

On April 4 and 5, William Peace University, in partnership with Dreamville, will host The Hip Hop and Higher Education Symposium (#HipHopEdWPU). The two-day event—which we reported on in September before it was pushed back, alongside the festival, by Hurricane Florence—features more than twelve panels, led by both regional and national scholars and artists, who will consider the relationship between hip-hop and a variety of disciplines, such as politics, social justice, art, race, and economics. 

In addition to offering critically engaged discussions on hip-hop’s place in academic and social-justice spaces, the symposium centers on the importance of hip-hop entrepreneurship. Ogden Payne, founder of For the Students, a company whose mission is to bring top-tier industry professionals to universities, will moderate a conversation between Ibrahim Hamad (manager of J. Cole and president of Dreamville) and Sascha Stone Guttfreund (president of Scoremore Shows).

Payne, who wants people to know that they “don’t have to be the talent … there are twenty other positions available,” says the exchange between the three hip-hop aficionados will “expand the scope of what [careers are] possible in hip-hop.” With a bubbling scene in the Triangle, this panel—and the symposium in general—is like a gift from the hip-hop gods.