Chowan University

Chowan University
Motto Lux et Veritas
Motto in English
Light and Truth
Type Private
Established 1848
Affiliation Baptist State Convention of North Carolina
President M. Christopher White
Provost Danny Moore
Students 1,532
Undergraduates 1,522
Postgraduates 10
Location Murfreesboro, NC, USA
Campus Rural
Colors Chowan Blue and White
Nickname Hawks
Mascot Murf the Hawk
Affiliations NCAA DII; NCCAA

Chowan /ˈwɔːn/ [1] University is a small private university of about 1500 students located in Murfreesboro, North Carolina, United States. The school is affiliated with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, though it accepts students of all backgrounds. It is the second-oldest Baptist school in North Carolina. The University offers both Associate's and Bachelor's degrees in 70 academic disciplines and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Chowan College in 1940

Chowan was founded by Dr. Godwin Cotton Moore in 1848 as Chowan Baptist Female Institute, a four-year women's college. It traces its roots to the Hertford Academy.[2] The McDowell Columns building, which houses the administrative offices of the college, was constructed in 1851. Between 1850-1867, the school changed names to the Chowan Female Collegiate Institute, then switched back to the Chowan Baptist Female Institute.

The school was renamed Chowan College in 1910 when it began awarding baccalaureate degrees, and began admitting male students in 1931. Financial strain from the effects of the Great Depression forced the school to become a two-year institution in 1937. In 1992 the college returned to four-year status when it admitted a junior class. The school's Board of Trustees elected to officially change the name to Chowan University on April 6, 2006, and the change in status took place on September 1, 2006.


Over 70 academic programs, an honors college, study abroad, research opportunities, internships. Many of Chowan's programs are nationally accredited, and Chowan University was featured in US News and World Report.[3]

An academic assistance program and tutoring center provide academic assistance for the entire student population. Student tutors and the academic assistance team work one-on-one with students.

The school currently boasts a student-to-faculty ratio of 15:1 with the majority of that faculty holding doctorates in their respective fields from premier institutions.


Chowan changed affiliation to the National Collegiate Athletic Association's (NCAA) Division II and is also a member of the National Christian College Athletic Association. Chowan previously competed in the USA South Athletic Conference of the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division III. The school's original mascot, adopted in the 1940s, was the Braves; but due to NCAA policy on Native American mascots, the school changed its mascot in 2006 to the Hawks.

Coach James Garrison was inducted into the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame in 2001. He was the Chowan College football coach for 43 years. Coach Garrison won 182 games (third among junior college coaches) and was 7-time Conference Coach of the Year. 35 players were NJCAA All-Americans. The last football team to post a winning record was the 1999 Chowan team which finished 5-4.

Bob Burke won over 450 games as the head men's basketball coach.

Chowan University has the following athletic teams: Women's Soccer, Men's Soccer, Football, Volleyball, Cross Country, Men's Basketball, Women's Basketball, Softball, Baseball, Golf, Tennis, and Cheerleading.

On September 24, 2007, the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association, established in 1912 and the oldest black athletic conference in United States, announced that Chowan would join the conference for its 2008 football season. Chowan will initially enter the conference to participate in only football. Before the addition of Chowan, the CIAA consisted only of historically African-American institutions of higher education. In joining the CIAA (which sponsors 16 men’s and women’s championships annually), Chowan continues its membership in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II. In October 2008, the CIAA Board of Trustees voted to accept Chowan University as a full member of the CIAA. Chowan accepted, and thus became the first non-HBCU member of the CIAA, and will participate in all sports officially for the 2009 fall season.

Notable alumni


Name Class year Notability References
Nate McMillan NBA basketball player and current coach
Fred Banks played with the Miami Dolphins [4]
Robert Brown played with the Green Bay Packers [4]
Bruce Bryant played with the Kansas City Chiefs [4]
Mike Bowser played with the Denver Broncos [4]
William Dalton played with the Detroit Lions [4]
Jeff Gethers played with the Indianapolis Colts [4]
David Green played with the CFL [4]
Hal Henderson played with the CFL and USFL [4]
Jerry Holmes played with the New York Jets [4]
Richard Holmes played with the CFL [4]
George Koonce played with the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks [4]
Ben Mungen played with the Pittsburgh Steelers [4]
Ned Parrish played with the Pittsburgh Steelers [4]
Mark Royals played with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers [4]
Woodie Safrit played with the Detroit Lions [4]
Jody Schulz played with the Philadelphia Eagles [4]
Thomas Squires played with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers [4]
Robert Tripp played with the Dallas Cowboys [4]
Curtis Whitley played with the Oakland Raiders [4]
Donald Whitehead played with the Oakland Raiders [4]
Fred O'Neal Vinson assistant coach/director of player programs for the Los Angeles Clippers
David Fulton played with the Green Bay Packers [4]

Other notable former students


  1. Talk Like A Tar Heel, from the North Carolina Collection's website at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Retrieved 2013-02-08.
  2. unknown (n.d.). "Freeman House" (pdf). National Register of Historic Places - Nomination and Inventory. North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office. Retrieved 2015-01-01.
  3. "America's best Colleges 2007". US News and World Report. Retrieved 2007-07-03.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 "Chowan in the NFL" (pdf). Chowan University. 2007-09-20. Retrieved 2007-09-30.
  5. Eggen, Dan (July 27, 2004). "9/11 Report Says Plotter Saw Self as Superterrorist". Washington Post. The Washington Post. pp. A1.

External links

Coordinates: 36°26′07″N 77°05′53″W / 36.435313°N 77.0981743°W / 36.435313; -77.0981743

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