Posted May 13, 2024

Oscar-winning alum Da’Vine Joy Randolph returns to Temple

During her visit, Randolph led a master class for theater students, answered questions from the university community and received the Gallery of Success Award.

Randolph onstage at TPAC with Williams-Witherspoon and Hogan
Photography By: 
courtesy of Da’Vine Joy Randolph

Da’Vine Joy Randolph, TFM ’08, has a way of connecting with her audiences. It’s a unique talent that has helped shoot her to stardom and most recently won her an Oscar. Her gift was especially apparent at Temple Performing Arts Center on March 27, 2024, when she engaged in a Q&A with students. During the event, Randolph was sure to call out each student who asked her a question by name, make eye contact and speak directly to them. The Q&A was hosted by Student Affairs and moderated by professor and senior associate in the Center for the Performing and Cinematic Arts Kimmika Williams-Witherspoon and Autumn Jewel Hogan, Class of 2026. 

Randolph visited campus shortly after winning her first Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in The Holdovers. During the Q&A, she gave advice to aspiring actors and spoke about the role Temple faculty played in her career as an artist. 

“I was really blessed to have faculty who came in at the right time in my life,” Randolph said. “They believed in me, supported me and breathed life into me.” 

She also stressed the importance of starting her career in Philadelphia and the vibrancy of the theater and art communities here. “Philadelphia has such a reverence and love for the arts ... I’m very lucky to have birthed my artistic self here,” she said. 

After Randolph connected with the over 500 students who attended the Q&A, President Richard Englert, Provost Gregory Mandel and Dean Robert Stroker took the stage to present Randolph with the Gallery of Success Award, an annual award given to alumni for outstanding professional achievement.  

Earlier in the day, Randolph hosted a master class for theater students. 

“Working with her was probably one of the most rewarding moments I’ve had at Temple to date,” said theater major Matthu Christian Minns, Class of 2025, who participated in the master class. “She made it a point to meet us where we were and I just immediately felt comfortable with her presence.” 

Bringing distinguished alumni back to campus is a proud tradition at Temple and serves to inspire students and help them reach for the stars.  

“It meant a ton to us to be able to bring Da’Vine back to campus,” said Craig Scott, assistant director for campus programs. “It is an amazing thing to see alumni be exceptional and reach heights in their respective fields. Specifically with Da’Vine, you could literally feel the energy among the CPCA [Center for Performing and Cinematic Arts] students in the room, and for some of those students, the connection will be transformative.”