Essex County College is set to start a Hip Hop Business Associate’s major in 2014. This endeavor will connect the concept of Hip Hop Entrepreneurialism to modern business planning and marketing strategies. Through behind the scenes consultation, I assisted my partner Jah Jah Shakur in brainstorming the basis for the curriculum which was used to make this effort possible. This journey marks the next step in preserving Hip Hop Kulture for future generations.
The announcement of the program on nj.com, the conservative mouthpiece for the Chris Christie administration, was met with hate-filled prejudice. Misinformed, willfully-ignorant, wannabee comedians who usually spend their days trolling stories about democrats aimed their hate at the news…
“Grilz or a gold tooth, flash vs. class”, “How NOT to shoot yourself in the groin at the club”, “Basics of Bling”, “Essential signs and how to flash them”, “When to keep your mouth shut and not look like a idiot when TMZ comes to interview you”
In response I said, “It’s funny to see all the knee-jerk, misinformed, prejudice comments spewed by the average nj.com reader about the new Hip Hop Business major at ECC. The cultural relevance of Hip Hop is not even in question with a course like this. This is about the fact that the products and Hip Hop influenced revenue streams associated with it, generate, by some estimates, 20 billion dollars per year. That is a market created out of nothing during the 1970’s by urban kids in the NY area (not to mention NJ) and brought to the World. It has spawned people who’s individual wealth surpasses everyone on here commenting combined, i.e. Jay-Z, Wayne, Russell Simmons, Puffy, Steve Stoute just to name a few. Hip Hop Kulture (proper) has created industries like Deejaying and influenced others like fashion, painting, tattooing, videography, music, etc. To provide a series of business courses that takes the knowledge of strategic planning for marketing to this genre is great. It’s obvious that the standard business course hasn’t had the necessary results. A course like this, signifies that the school is trying to make a proactive change. I study and live a Hip Hop lifestyle, so I definitely see the benefit in it.”
Other commenters had more insightful input into the conversation.
See all majors the include the words: “Sports”, “Fashion”, “Radio”, “TV”, or “Film”.
Better toss Political Science and Psychology in there for good measure. Ever met a Poli Sci major who became a politician? Most just become t-shirt folders at Old Navy.
To that my reply is… Most college courses can’t guarantee you a job in the field you majored in. A business degree helps you understand the general principles of business planning, marketing, organizing etc. This course will add in the principles of entrepreneurship, niche marketing, and post-modern branding that Hip Hop elements are known for. You can’t really judge the efficacy of a course like this without having any idea what the curriculum is. One thing the article pointed out was the emphasis on planning your own business. We need more business owners trained with some sort of formal knowledge. No one on here knows or probably even contemplates what the jobs of the future are. Who would have predicted SEO manager as a job, or video game designer, or social media advertising consultant? It’s easy to knock something and much harder to come up with a solution yourself.