School daze. There are few rappers that I would schlep all the way to St. John's University in Queens but J. Cole is one of them. I initially went to cover Jermaine's homecoming show at his alma mater for Village Voice but the story took an interesting turn, when I stalked the rapper receiving his college diploma. Although he graduated in 2007 Summa cum laude with a G.P.A. of 3.82--higher than mine--he never received his lambskin due to a missing library book.
"I owed money for a library book that I didn't turn in," he admitted sheepishly. He has "no clue" what title it was but apparently even one vanishing book cost him his degree. "If you have any outstanding fee, that translates to money. There's a price associated with it. I never paid. That's why I don't have my degree." Luckily, the school waived the fee for its star pupil. "Tonight, I guess they let me slide," he laughed. Nearly a decade after the fact, Cole already knows exactly what he's going to do with his long-awaited piece of paper. "I'm gonna send it to my Mom."
How adorbs is that? Let this be a lesson to all journos: Keep your eyes and ears open on interviews; you never know what you'll discover. Peep the full interview here. Thanks to Adam and Ib at Dreamville for helping make this possible.