The late actor Chadwick Boseman is among Howard University’s most famous and distinguished alumni, and now his name will grace one of its colleges.
Howard University on Wednesday announced its newly re-established college of fine arts will be named the Chadwick A. Boseman College of Fine Arts in honor of the “Black Panther” actor who died last August at the age of 43 after battling colon cancer. The college will be helmed by the newly appointed Dean Phylicia Rashad, the acclaimed actress and Howard alumna, who graduated magna cum laude from the college in 1970.
In a statement, Boseman’s family thanked university officials for the honor: “Chad fought to preserve the College of Fine Arts during his matriculation at Howard and remained dedicated to the fight throughout his career, and he would be overjoyed by this development,” the statement said. “His time at Howard University helped shape both the man and the artist that he became, committed to truth, integrity, and a determination to transform the world through the power of storytelling.”
Howard University president Wayne A.I. Frederick expressed the university’s gratitude to Boseman for his dedication to the school.
“When Chadwick Boseman returned to campus in 2018 to serve as our commencement speaker ... I announced our plans to reestablish the College of Fine Arts and he was filled with ideas and plans to support the effort in a powerful way,” Frederick said. “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.”
During his remarks at the commencement ceremony, Boseman called Howard “a magical place,” adding, “when you have reached the Hilltop and you are deciding on next steps, you would rather find purpose than a career. Purpose is an essential element of you that crosses disciplines.”