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Entire graduate class quits USC art school in protest

Protesting faculty and curriculum changes, all seven graduate students of the class of 2016 at the University of Southern California's prestigious art and design school have announced their withdrawals.

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In this May 15, 2013 file photo, University of Southern California President C.L. Max Nikias, right, appears with, from left, Jimmy Iovine, the co-founder of Interscope Records, Erica Muhl, dean of the USC Roski School of Fine Arts, and hip-hop mogul Andre "Dr. Dre" Young as they announce a $70 million dollar donation to create the Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts and Technology and Business Innovation at USC, during a news conference in Santa Monica, Calif. The entire graduate class of 2016 of what is now known as the USC Roski School of Art and Design has dropped out, protesting faculty and curriculum changes.

Damian Dovarganes

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The entire graduate class of 2016 at the University of Southern California's art and design school has dropped out, protesting faculty and curriculum changes.

The seven fine arts students on Friday posted a letter online, saying they're withdrawing from USC's Roski School of Art and Design because of changes to the visual arts graduate program after they enrolled and the loss of several prominent professors.

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The Los Angeles Times reports that the students were also upset about the loss of guaranteed teaching assistant positions.

The school says it regrets the students' decision and adds that issues involving the curriculum and financial aid were considered resolved.

USC's graduate visual arts program is intimate but highly respected. It has produced many well-known contemporary artists.