NGU News

NGU to Combine Colleges of Mass Communication and Fine Arts

Posted on: March 12, 2021
By LaVerne Howell,

Tigerville, SC (March 21, 2019) North Greenville University’s (NGU) Office of Academic Affairs has announced that the College of Communication and the College of Fine Arts will combine to form the College of Communication and Fine Arts effective June 1, 2019. NGU has also announced that the founding dean of this new College will be Dr. Webster F. (Web) Drake, who comes to NGU from Union University in Jackson, TN.

“Our region is one that has distinctive excellence in music and the fine arts and incredible opportunities for students in fields related to communication,” said NGU President Dr. Gene C. Fant, Jr. “Dr. Drake has a long record as a leader in these areas and is a proven program builder. His energy and his ability to interpret our mission, equipping transformational leaders for church and society, in these crucial disciplines, will advance NGU quickly and position our students for careers that enhance our culture and serve our business communities.”

The new College of Communication and Fine Arts will include three schools: The School of Communication, The Cline School of Music, and the School of the Arts. The School of Communication will house all communication programs. An associate dean for this school will be appointed at a later date. The Cline School of Music will house all of the music programs and will be led by associate dean Dr. Jackie Griffin.  The School of the Arts will house the degree programs in theatre and art. Dr. Amy Dunlap will serve as associate dean.

“North Greenville has long been associated with the fine arts, both through our strong academic programs and our outstanding musical and dramatic performances. In recent years, our communication programs have become some of our most popular programs on campus. Both areas have been led with distinction by Jackie Griffin and Linwood Hagin, respectively. I’m excited for how these programs will come together in this new college,” said NGU Provost and Dean of the University Faculty Dr. Nathan A. Finn.

“Also, I couldn’t be more grateful that Web Drake has felt called to lead this new college. He is a seasoned academic leader and a committed Baptist churchman. I’m excited for the future of our programs in communication and fine arts under his leadership,” Finn said.  

Drake received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication and History from Mississippi College, his Master of Arts in Communication Studies from the University of North Texas, and his Ph.D. in Communication from Louisiana State University. He has also done post-graduate studies at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, TX. 

Before joining North Greenville, he served at Union University in Jackson, TN, as chair and professor of Communication Arts and Director of Debate for eleven years. Previously, Drake served as assistant professor of speech and theater at Mississippi College (MS) in Clinton, MS.  His debate teams have won ten national championships as well as multiple individual championships in the International Public Debate Association. He has directed mainstage shows at both MC and Union. In 2016, he was selected as the Faculty Member of the Year at Union.

Drake and his wife Sharon have been married for 21 years. They have two children, Lauren, 17, and Jon David, 14. He enjoys spending time with his family, reading, and exercising. He is looking forward to serving at North Greenville.

“The College of Communication and Fine Arts is full of passionate culture-creators who are impacting South Carolina and the world for the kingdom of Christ,” said Drake. “My goal is to equip and enable these amazing faculty members and students, to provide them with opportunities and resources, and to co-create with them a culture of excellence and calling. I can’t wait to see where this journey leads.”

For more information about degree programs offered in communications and fine arts, visit

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