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Missy Elliott and Justin Timberlake receive honorary doctorates from Berklee College

Tatyana Jenene

 // May 12, 2019

Paul Marotta for Getty

Congrats are in order for Missy Elliott and Justin Timberlake.

The two superstars along with Alex Lacamoire joined Aretha Franklin, Quincy Jones, B.B. King, Smokey Robinson, Rita Moreno, and Duke Ellington when they received honorary doctorates from the Berklee College of Music.

The college gave the three the doctorates for their "influences in music, and for their enduring global impact," according to E! News.



Berklee described Elliott as a "groundbreaking solo superstar, pioneering producer, songwriter, singer, and rapper."

According to CBS Boston, the producer/rapper-singer said, "There will be ups and downs — prepare for that. As long as you are breathing, it is never too late. Don't forget that. You have come too far to quit."

Elliott became the first hip hop artist to receive an honorary doctorate from the music school. Next month, she will become the first female inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.



Following the ceremony, Elliott posted a video of her holding her degree on Instagram with the caption, "CREATE YOUR OWN LANE!!!! Sincerely Dr. MISSY ELLIOT."

Timberlake told the crowd of graduates that failure should improve them and not defined their legacy.

"You're defined by what you define failure as. It's not a thing if it leads you to your success," he said. "It's all part of the journey."The singer also said he was ready to work with the graduates. "Meet me at the studio. I want to see y'all!" he announced to the crowd.



His speech spilled over to Instagram as he posted a photo with his degree saying, "No Dream is too big!!! Keep chasing!!! Trust me... I'm a DOCTOR!! But, for real... THANK YOU to @berkleecollege for this incredible honor—I'm very humbled and grateful."

Congratulations to Dr. Elliott, Dr. Timberlake and all the 2019 graduates!

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