The creators of University Of dope are two Hip-Hop enthusiasts, A.V. “$upreme” Perkins a DIY blogger and Marian “Skinni Bee” Andoh a project manager.
The University of Dope brand was created when A.V. asked Marian to name all the members of Wu-Tang while drunk…turns out she could name them all, and thought it would be fun to turn into a quiz game that they now share with the entire world.
Christopher D. Thomas publisher of inCity Magazine was able to have a one-on-one with Marian and chat about how the Dream turned Reality.
Please introduce yourself to our audience
Marian Andoh-Clarke, but friends sometimes call me Skinni Bee. I am the co-founder and COO of Vance Hall LLC/ University of Dope and titled myself the Dean of Hip Hop Affairs kinda like how T.I. deemed himself King of the South
To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
Our game University of Dope was founded in friendship and love for Wu-tang. It was never really our intent to make our own game. A.V. dared me to name all the members of Wu-tang drunk. I told her that would be a dope party game and we legit couldn’t find it to buy, so we made it up.
Has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had
The path has been a rocky one. We struggled to find funding and ended up using my own capital to get off the ground. From there both of us were so busy with our personal and professional lives that we really didn’t take it seriously until 2019 into 2020. Thats when we decided to rebrand and put in the effort our brand deserved. Since then we have grown exponentially.
What can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from
What sets us apart from other games is the nostalgia piece. Most millennials still argue to this day about most of the topics in our game. In addition, most games tend to be family friendly, where our game, you can take to your friend’s house and get lit. We’re the game you bring to Friendsgiving not Thanksgiving! The Pop quiz card also sets us apart because it is all rooted in hip hop culture.
Tell us a bit more about your business?
We were founded in 2016 and rebranded in 2020. We discovered another service we package and sell called the University of Dope Game Show. We use live interactive polling to pit the viewers against our on-screen contestants in real time. It was birthed in covid to make virtual engagement more fun. Most of the time the person on social media is just watching you. Our game show puts the controls in the viewers hands, they pick what the correct answer will be, which contestants they want to see complete our Pop Quiz Challenges and even vote on the winner in real time. We host the show on our own social networks but we sell the service for private parties and gatherings. We were able to do one for Sony and Bleacher Report.
Are there any books, apps, podcasts or blogs that help you do your best?
I live and die by all things google. The chat, tasks, calendar, notes, etc. It has helped us organize a lot. I don’t really listen to podcasts but I will put on Toni Jones and let her hit me with positive affirmation while I work.