Howard University and Netflix have announced a $5.4 million endowed scholarship to honor actor, director, writer and producer, alumnus Chadwick A. Boseman. The Chadwick A. Boseman Memorial Scholarship will provide incoming students in the College of Fine Arts with a four-year scholarship to cover the full cost of university tuition. Back in September, Howard officially renamed its College of Fine Arts after the Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom Oscar-nominated supporting actor.
“It is with immense pleasure and deep gratitude that we announce the creation of an endowed scholarship in honor of alumnus, Chadwick Boseman, whose life and contributions to the arts continues to inspire,” said Howard University President Wayne A.I. Frederick, M.D. “This scholarship embodies Chadwick’s love for Howard, his passion for storytelling, and his willingness to support future generations of Howard students. I am thankful for the continuous support and partnership of Chadwick’s wife, Mrs. Simone Ledward Boseman, and to Netflix for this important gift.”
The Chadwick A. Boseman Memorial Scholarship was created with the support of Boseman’s wife, Simone Ledward-Boseman and sponsorship from Netflix, the inaugural donor. The first scholarships will be awarded to one recipient in each class beginning this Fall 2021. It will focus on students who exemplify exceptional skills in the arts reminiscent of the Black Panther actor, and who demonstrate financial need. The first year will begin with awarding four awards representing one member of each class and will continue to be distributed to an incoming freshman each year on an annual basis.
“Many exemplary artists are not afforded the opportunity to pursue higher learning, we hope to support as many students as possible by removing the financial barrier to education. This endowment represents Chad’s devotion to the craft, his compassion for others, and his desire to support future storytellers,” said Ledward-Boseman. “My deepest thanks to Ted Sarandos, Scott Stuber and our family at Netflix for their generous investment into the education of all present and future Boseman Scholars, and to President Wayne Frederick, Dean Phylicia Rashad and Mr. David Bennett for their partnership and continued commitment to Chad’s legacy at Howard. I’m overwhelmed with gratitude and amazed at the love and dedication shown by so many continuing to honor my husband’s work. I know he’d be proud.”
“It is with enormous pride that we announce our endowment of the Chadwick A. Boseman Memorial Scholarship. While he was taken from us too soon, his spirit is with us always in his work and the good that he has inspired. He always spoke of his time at Howard and the positive way it shaped his life and career. Now, we will have the opportunity to give many future superheroes a chance to experience the same” said Ted Sarandos, Netflix Co-CEO and Chief Content Officer. “We are grateful to Simone and Chadwick’s whole family and our partners at Howard University for making this possible.”
The inaugural class of awardees are: Sarah Long, a freshman in musical theatre; Shawn Smith, a sophomore studying acting; Janee’ Ferguson, a junior in theatre arts administration; and senior Deirdre Dunkin who studies dance.