Howard alumna Phylicia Rashad appointed Dean of HU College of Fine Arts

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Howard University alumna and award winning actress Phylicia Rashad will serve as dean of the institution’s College of Fine Arts. (AP Photo)

By Micha Green
AFRO D.C. Editor
mgreen@afro.com

Howard University’s College of Fine Arts will now be led by one of the institution’s most famous graduates, award-winning actress Phylicia Rashad.  Rashad, who graduated from the university magna-cum-laude, will officially begin her role as Dean of the College of Fine Arts on July 1.

“In this full circle moment, Ms. Phylicia Rashad will take the training and skills that she honed as a student at Howard and exuded in an outstanding performing career, and she will share those pearls of wisdom with the next generation of students in the College of Fine Arts. Her passion for the arts and student success makes her a perfect fit for this role,” said Provost Anthony K. Wutoh, to whom she’ll report.

Rashad is celebrated for such roles as Claire Huxtable on The Cosby Show, Carol on This is Us, Diana Dubois in Empire, Grandmother Journey in Jingle, Jangle and a host of stage acting and directing credits.  

Howard President Wayne A.I. Frederick said that with Rashad’s immense training, experience and high acclaim, she will be perfect in setting the standard for the newly established College of Fine Arts.

“As we reintroduce our campus community and the world at large to Howard’s College of Fine Arts, the dean will play an instrumental role in ensuring an auspicious beginning for this reestablished institution. Given Ms. Rashad’s reputation as well as her capabilities and impressive list of accomplishments, she will undoubtedly empower the college to transcend even our incredibly high expectations. Under her leadership, Howard will continue to inspire and cultivate the artists and leaders who will shape our niche and national cultures for generations to come,” Frederick said in a statement submitted to the AFRO.

This is not Rashad’s first rodeo in collegiate education.  In fact, this reporter was a student in Fordham University’s Theatre Department when Rashad served as the Denzel Washington Endowed Chair of the program.  She attended each meeting, taught with patience and gave valuable advice and feedback to students post performances. 

The highly lauded performer, director and educator said she is honored to serve at her alma mater.

“It is a privilege to serve in this capacity and to work with the Howard University administration, faculty and students in reestablishing the College of Fine Arts,” Rashad said.