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The late Chadwick Boseman captivated audiences with his work on the motion picture screen, portraying powerful figures such as James Brown, Thurgood Marshall, and Jackie Robinson and of course Marvel’s Black Panther. But to all who knew him, he was a proud alumni of Howard University first, even taking part in protests against the school’s consolidation of the fine arts college in 1997 as a sophomore.
To that end, the HBCU announced that their newly re-established college of fine arts will now be known as the Chadwick A. Boseman College of Fine Arts. This will be led by their newly appointed dean, Phylicia Rashad.
The Washington, D.C.-based university’s president, Wayne A. I. Frederick broke the news in a statement: “Chadwick’s love for Howard University was sincere, and although he did not live to see those plans through to fruition, it is my honor to ensure his legacy lives on through the Chadwick A. Boseman College of Fine Arts with the support of his wife and the Chadwick Boseman Foundation.”
The announcement represents a circle of completion, as Boseman often spoke of Ms. Rashad’s mentorship of him being a major influence and supported her taking the role of dean last month along with other Howard alumni. In a statement related to the announcement, she said: “Unrelenting in his pursuit of excellence, Chadwick was possessed with a passion for inquiry and a determination to tell stories — through acting, writing, and directing — that revealed the beauty and complexity of our human spirit.”
The renaming will also include an initiative to obtain funding for a new building for the college, which will be led by Bob Iger, the executive chairman of the Walt Disney Company. The Chadwick Boseman College of Fine Arts will also be home to the university’s radio and television stations.