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Pepperdine To Open Staples Center 'Classroom' In Partnership With AEG

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Inside the Staples Center (Photo by James CW Chang via Flickr)
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It’s a great time to enroll at Pepperdine University for fans of the L.A. Kings, Lakers, and Galaxy.

The Malibu-based university has partnered with AEG to open a classroom inside downtown’s Staples Center. The partnership will benefit students pursuing careers in sports and entertainment, as well as AEG employees looking to further their education. Word is still out on whether it will help undergrads trying to scrounge up last-minute sporting event tickets.

The unique Staples Center classroom will allow the university to create sports-related curriculum and programming that will be co-taught by faculty and top-level executives, according to KTLA. It looks like there will also be some pretty rad work study opportunities: “Through this partnership, we are also excited to offer students valuable hands-on training through our renowned internship program, while providing our employees with continuing education opportunities through the University,"Dan Beckerman, president and CEO of AEG, noted in a company press release.

AEG is one of the world’s largest owners of sports franchises and venues. The group owns both the Staples Center and the StubHub Center in Southern California, as well as stakes in the L.A. Kings, L.A. Galaxy, and L.A. Lakers.

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“By partnering with AEG, Pepperdine will be at the forefront of academic innovation, creating world-class educational programs in sports and entertainment management,” Andrew K. Benton, president of Pepperdine, said. “We look forward to working with professional athletes, entertainers, and business professionals—as well as our students and alumni—as we develop new initiatives that will powerfully engage and serve the Los Angeles community.”

According to the L.A. Times, Pepperdine has roughly 7,600 graduate and undergraduate students.

The university is familiar with integrating its students into real-world environments. Pepperdine’s Washington D.C. campus allows undergrads to intern in the city while interacting with leading politicians and policy-makers.

“Pepperdine understood the vision and the mutual benefits to really build something special and unique that nobody has ever done in this capacity,” Jon Werbeck, a vice president at AEG, said. “Cultivating educational opportunities is one of the ways we like to give back to the fans and neighborhoods that support us.”

Classes may begin at the Staples Center as soon as the Fall 2017 term, but don’t expect to see Jeff Carter attending a lesson anytime soon.