Chowan University

Coordinates: 36°26′07″N 77°05′53″W / 36.435313°N 77.0981743°W / 36.435313; -77.0981743
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Chowan University
Chowan University (logo).png
Former name
Chowan Baptist Female Institute (1848–1850)
Chowan Female Collegiate Institute (1850–1867)
Chowan Baptist Female Institute (1867–1910)
Chowan College (1910–2006)
MottoLux et Veritas
Motto in English
Light and Truth
Established1848; 175 years ago (1848)
Religious affiliation
Baptist State Convention of North Carolina
PresidentCharles Taylor (interim)
ProvostDanny Moore
Colors   Blue and white
Sporting affiliations
MascotMurf the Hawk

Chowan University (/ˈwɒn/)[1] is a private Christian liberal arts university in Murfreesboro, North Carolina. The university offers associate, bachelor's, and master's degrees in 70 academic disciplines and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. It enrolls about 1,000 students.


Chowan College in 1940

Chowan was founded by 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 and 1867, the school changed names to the Chowan Female Collegiate Institute, then switched back to the Chowan Baptist Female Institute.

Chowan Female College, 1854

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 college'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.

The school takes its name from the Chowanoke tribe of indigenous people who previously inhabited the land on which Murfreesboro and Chowan University stand.[3]

In 2007, Chowan University, along with four other private North Carolina Christian colleges, began a process to change their relationships with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, in order to obtain more academic freedom and select their own trustees. The state convention also agreed to start transferring funds traditionally given directly to the universities into a new scholarship fund for Baptist students.

In 2009, the schools gained autonomy from the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina and established a “good faith and cooperative” relationship with it. The four other schools were, Mars Hill University, Campbell University, Wingate University, and Gardner-Webb University.


Chowan offers over 70 academic programs, an honors college, study abroad, research opportunities, and internships. 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.


Chowan University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award the associate, baccalaureate, and masters degrees, along with other various programs accredited by state and national agencies.[4]


Chowan changed affiliation to the National Collegiate Athletic Association's (NCAA) Division II, primary competing in Conference Carolinas, and was formerly 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's Division III and the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association of the National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division II. The school's original mascot, adopted in the 1940s, was the Braves but was changed in 2006 to the Hawks due to NCAA policy on Native American mascots.

Chowan University has the following athletic teams: Women's Soccer, Men's Soccer, Football, Volleyball, Men's and Women's Cross Country, Men's Basketball, Women's Basketball, Softball, Baseball, Men's and Women's Golf, Men's and Women's Tennis, Men's and Women's Lacrosse, Women's Bowling, Women's Acrobatic and Tumbling, Men's and Women's Swimming, co-ed Esports and Cheerleading.

Notable alumni[edit]

Elected officials[edit]


Other notable former students[edit]


  1. ^ Talk Like A Tar Heel Archived 2013-06-22 at the Wayback Machine, 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. ^ "About Us". Chowan University. 19 July 2021. Retrieved 11 October 2021.
  4. ^ campus (2021-07-19). "Accreditations & Authorizations | Chowan University". Retrieved 2023-05-05.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h "Chowan in the NFL" (PDF). Chowan University. 2007-09-20. Archived from the original on 2015-05-11. Retrieved 2017-01-30.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  6. ^ "Nate McMillian". The Official Athletics Site of the Chowan University Hawks. Retrieved 31 January 2017.
  7. ^ Eggen, Dan (July 27, 2004). "9/11 Report Says Plotter Saw Self as Superterrorist". Washington Post. pp. A1.

External links[edit]

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