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May 26, 2017

Apple Designer Jonanthan Ive Named Chancellor of the Royal College of Art

LONDON, ENGLAND–The Royal College of Art has appointed Apple Chief Design Officer Sir Jonathan Ive chancellor, Hannah Ellis-Petersen of the Guardian reports. Ive will take over the position from British designer and entrepreneur James Dyson, who has held the post since 2012. Ive’s appointment signals the Royal College of Arts’ increased focus on the fields technology, science, and engineering, and the expansion of digital-based courses in its design programs.

Royal College of Art rector Paul Thompson said, “Jony embodies the RCA’s ideals of technology and design excellence, inspiring students and staff, and enabling us to educate the next generation of world-leading artists and designers.”

Speaking of his appointment to BBC Radio 4’s Today, Ive said he was “thrilled to formalize [his] relationship with the RCA, given the profound influence the college has had on so many of the artists and designers that I admire.” Ive, who joined Apple in 1992 and has led its design department for more than twenty years during which time he has produced the MacBook, iPhone, and iPod, will begin his tenure in July and will lead the university’s governing body and confer degrees. The chancellorship is a non-salaried position.

Ive also stressed the need to foster “a diverse pool of talent” in post-Brexit to ensure the United Kingdom’s technology industry could compete with Silicon Valley giants Apple and Google. “The UK has a fabulous tradition of design education,” he said, “but we can always be doing better, given the way design has to meet new challenges and is in a constant fluid state of change. There are always ways design education can become more relevant.”

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