Rupsch to lead new School of Fine Arts and Applied Arts at Chowan University

Published 10:20 am Tuesday, September 27, 2016

By Christina E. Thomas
University Relations

MURFREESBORO – They say what goes around comes back around. Maybe it’s just a cliché, yet maybe it offers valuable insight into why people return to their first love.

In the case of Chowan University and Christina Rupsch, it’s clearly the latter as she begins her third stint at Chowan University, this time as Dean of the newly created School of Fine and Applied Arts.

Rupsch previously served as Chair of the Visual Arts Department from 1995 to 2008. Rupsch returns with additional teaching and administrative experience and brings her new vision, which is fully embraced by the University administration.

As Dean she plans to refine the curriculum, grow partnerships, encourage opportunities for collaborations, promote art exposure and increase offerings to the community, making the arts available for everyone. The combined School of Fine and Applied Arts brings together Theatre, Music, and Art under one umbrella.

Introducing cross-disciplinary options to students offers them exposure, opportunities to become more rounded, and a better understanding of the application of their study.

“She is so creative and has so many fresh ideas to promote Fine Arts,” says Dr. Chris White, President of Chowan University. “There was rejoicing in the land when she returned.”

Rupsch returned, in part, due to the Chowan culture, which she describes as a place where ideas can be shared freely and implemented quickly for the betterment of students.  She also missed the kindness and small size of the campus.

“It is big enough that you really don’t know everybody, but small enough that you can make things happen,” Rupsch elaborates.

After her first decade at Chowan, a career opportunity for her husband moved the couple to Pennsylvania. A few years later they returned to the Tidewater area in Virginia where she continued her career as Director of the Visual Arts Center for Tidewater Community College for seven years before returning to Chowan, where the campus community eagerly welcomed her home.

“Chris is a very talented educator and leader, and has great experience fostering interdisciplinary relationships between departments and disciplines,” comments Dr. Danny Moore, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. “Her approach and leadership experience will serve the new School of Fine and Applied Arts and the University well and help us to expand opportunities for our students and advance the mission of the University.”

Rupsch found an altered physical campus but the same warm Chowan spirit waiting for her. “Coming back now, the campus is beautiful, there are new buildings everywhere; it is just a wonderful place,” she says. “Chowan has the perfect environment for learning, exchanging ideas, and developing professionalism. It is a place that I thoroughly enjoy working and I am very excited to be back.”

For more information about Chowan University, visit or call 1-888-4-CHOWAN.