Missy Elliott to Become the First Female Hip-Hop Artist to Receive an Honorary Doctorate from Berklee College of Music


March 13, 2019

Photo: Derek Blanks

Before Missy Elliott makes history in June as the first woman rapper to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, she’ll become the first female hip-hop artist to receive an honorary doctorate from the Berklee College of Music. 

As a pioneering artist, songwriter, and producer, Elliott is also the only woman rapper to have all six studio albums be certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. Throughout her 20-plus-year career, she has earned five Grammy awards, plus written and produced countless songs for some of today’s top artists. 


Berklee stated on its website that “this year’s honorary doctorate recipients are being recognized for their achievements and influences in music, and for their enduring global impact.” 

Along with Justin Timberlake and Alex Lacamoire, Elliott will receive the honorary doctorate during Berklee’s commencement ceremony on May 11.  


She’ll join legendary artists such as Aretha Franklin, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, B.B. King, Quincy Jones, and Smokey Robinson as a recipient of Berklee’s honorary Doctor of Music degrees honorary Doctor of Music degree. 

Congratulations Missy on blazing yet another trail! 


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