Jony Ive, the Brit who has risen to become Apple’s chief design officer, has been appointed chancellor of the Royal College of Art (RCA).
He will take up the role in July and replace British engineer Sir James Dyson.
“I am thrilled to formalise my relationship with the RCA, given the profound influence the college has had on so many of the artists and designers that I admire,” Ive said in a statement.
“Our design team includes many RCA alumni, who embody the fundamental values of the college. I look forward to advising both the college and students, hoping that my experience proves useful in their work.”
Ive has led the Apple design team since 2006 and he is responsible for the look and feel of Apple’s entire product line (iPhone, iPod, iPad, MacBook and Apple Watch) as well as major architectural projects like the company’s new Apple Park HQ in California.
Founded in 1837, the RCA — a postgraduate university home to around 900 students based in London — was ranked the world’s best institution for art and design for the third year in a row in 2017 by QS University World Rankings.
In his five-year term as chancellor, Ive will preside over meetings and help to govern the college. He will not be paid for his efforts.
Paul Thompson, rector of the Royal College of Art, added in a statement: “We are delighted to welcome Sir Jony Ive as our new chancellor. It is a great honour to be joined by the world’s leading designer of his generation, who has produced consistently innovative and commercially successful technology and design.
“As chancellor, Jony embodies the RCA’s ideals of technology and design excellence, inspiring students and staff, and enabling us to educate the next generation of world-leading artists and designers.”
Ive holds a number of other titles and positions in addition to his role at the world’s largest tech company. He received an honorary doctorate from the RCA, conferred in 2009. He was awarded a CBE in 2006 and a KBE in the 2012 New Year’s Honours list. Ive also holds honorary doctorates from both Oxford and Cambridge Universities.