As Pharrell Williams prepare to kick off the inaugural Something in the Water festival this weekend, he reportedly will be tagging up with Verizon for a nationwide education venture. As reported by Billboard, the tech company announced today (April 26) a music education program at Verizon Innovative Learning schools throughout the country.
The program will also include the building of Verizon Innovative Learning Lab, which will offer cutting-edge technology such as virtual reality and robotics. The technology, funded by the Verizon Foundation, will be provided freely to under-resourced middle schools across the country along with internet access and tech-focused curriculum. The first of the Innovative Learning Labs will be built in Pharrell’s hometown of Virginia Beach.
“I want all children to have access to that kind of creative growth, access, and support. All kids, not just my own,” Pharrell told Billboard in an exclusive interview. “There’s a lot of variables in a situation as to why something falls apart, but there’s only one scenario where it holds together, and that’s when all the variables are there. The environment, the family, the school, the system — there’s so many things. We just want to do what we can to balance the odds so that as many kids as we can afford, or help and assist in whatever ways, get this access and support.”
Pharrell knows all too well of how art can be influential towards the kids of tomorrow, inspiring an entire generation after him with his music and fashion. Just recently, he was named Valedictory Keynote Speaker at the University of Virginia’s 2019 graduating class. His influence is also international as well, debuting a capsule collection with fashion pillar Chanel in South Korea.
Pharrell will headline the first two nights of his opening the Something in the Water festival in Virginia Beach (April 26-28). Additional artists to appear at the festival will include Migos, Janelle Monae, Anderson .Paak, Chris Brown, Travis Scott and more.