Chapman University and Orange County School of the Arts (OCSA) have joined forces officially in a collaboration signed this month. The agreement has the two schools focusing on enhancing opportunities for their students in curriculum areas including but not limited to film production, performing arts, and the humanities. Both schools – one a private university and the other a secondary public charter school for grades seven through 12, are located in Orange County, CA.

3 men at a table signing papers

Ralph Opacic, Paul Musco, and President Daniele Struppa

“Chapman University has long had a commitment to the arts,” said Daniele Struppa, Ph.D., president of Chapman University. “And now we are poised to help cultivate a new generation of local talent with a variety of artistic passions. It’s a perfect match for students whose creative aptitudes and dedication to their crafts reside in artistic endeavors like filmmaking, writing and design. And, Chapman’s Musco Center for the Arts – just two years old – is a beacon for those in the performing arts to come and thrive in a top university venue.”

Specifically, the collaboration will grow the areas of innovative curriculum for OCSA students, opportunities for Chapman student teachers, scholarships for OCSA students, joint master classes, joint research projects, joint performance opportunities, and joint applications for grant funding.

“Orange County School of the Arts is committed to providing bright and talented students with unparalleled preparation for higher education through our innovative dual arts and academic program,” said Ralph S. Opacic, Ed.D., OCSA founder and executive director. “By collaborating with Chapman, we are able to further serve our talented artist scholars by providing them with access to Chapman’s distinguished faculty, state-of-the-art facilities and college-level curriculum. We look forward to this partnership opening doors to even more opportunities for OCSA students, Chapman students and the greater Orange County community.”

two young women singing

Chapman student Jasmine Rodriguez ’18, and OCSA student Sophia Strobel

Founded in 1987, OCSA serves middle and high school students with talents in the performing, visual, literary and culinary arts. Chapman University was founded in 1851 and has historically been thought of as a liberal arts school, although the university has made strides in the health sciences in the past five years. Since its inception, OCSA has had more than 100 graduates go on to attend Chapman University. And there are currently 40 Chapman alumni teaching and working at OCSA.

Paul Musco – who sits on the boards of both schools – and his wife Marybelle, are known in Orange County for being benefactors to the arts, and were instrumental in encouraging this partnership. Musco, who attended the signing ceremony said, “Bringing these two schools together is a natural alliance. Seeing what they are both accomplishing in the fine arts and what they are striving to accomplish makes this a composition that will serve the students and ultimately the future of the art and creative communities for generations to come.”

young woman singing holding hands out front

Chapman student Milan McCray ’19

The signing of the collaboration took place February 1 at Chapman University. Students from both schools performed: a jazz combo and vocal performance from OCSA, a vocal performance from Chapman, and a classical voice duet by Chapman and OCSA students.

About Orange County School of the Arts

As one of the premier arts schools in the nation, Orange County School of the Arts (OCSA) provides a thriving, dynamic school environment that graduates highly engaged, creative students with the imagination to find solutions to today’s complex problems and thrive in the 21st century. Established in 1987, the school currently serves over 2,100 gifted students in grades seven through 12. In addition to a rigorous academic program, OCSA offers students the opportunity to refine their skills and flourish in one of five schools of study: Applied Arts, Dance, Fine & Media Arts, Music, and Theatre. OCSA has been named as one of California’s Gold Ribbon Schools for 2017, and in 2018, was ranked the Best Charter High School in Orange County. OCSA is the only specialized arts program of its kind in the region to offer tuition-free academic and arts instruction to students from Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, and San Diego counties. In collaboration with a strategic advisory board, OCSA is further developing the school’s instructional program through the creation of meaningful partnerships with Southern California’s leading arts organizations and premier colleges and universities. For additional information, visit

About Chapman University

As an academically distinguished center of learning, Chapman University attracts extraordinary students and faculty from around the globe. Its ten schools and colleges foster a vibrant intellectual community, and provide extensive opportunities for students to learn, grow and discover alongside remarkable faculty. The University is home to some 8,000 students pursuing bachelor, master and doctoral degrees, and is alma mater to more than 40,000 alumni found throughout the United States and the world. Now celebrating its 157th year, Chapman is known for its distinguishing strengths in leadership and civic engagement, in the arts and entertainment disciplines, and in specialized sectors of technology and science. The University is comprised of its main campus in Orange, California, and the Rinker Health Science campus for graduate health science programs in Irvine, California. Visit us at

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