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The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the nation’s first public university, serves North Carolina, the United States, and the world through teaching, research, and public service. Through the efforts of our exceptional students, faculty, and staff and with generous support from North Carolina’s citizens we invest our knowledge and resources in individuals to enhance access to learning, foster the success of the next generation, and confront society’s most pressing challenges.

That progress comes as we aspire to follow Carolina Next:  Innovations for Public Good, a comprehensive strategic plan developed over two years with broad input from the campus community to serve as the roadmap on our journey to become the leading global public research university.

Fundamental to public education is the premise that an educated citizenry is essential to a successful democracy. The preparation of informed citizens and engaged leaders requires the composition of a student body marked by diversity along many dimensions. A diverse student body helps foster vibrant environments within classrooms and residence halls, on performing arts stages and athletic fields, and in the community. In addition, diversity enables the exchange of ideas and the pursuit of solutions from many different perspectives and grounded in many different life experiences.

Experience and evidence show our differences strengthen educational programs, enhance the development of our students, and enable us to achieve our mission as a public university one that strives for excellence in teaching, learning, discovering, and serving all the people of North Carolina.

Incoming students consistently indicate that diversity matters to them. For the 2021 entering class:

  • 92 percent said they hope to receive, during their time at Carolina, the experience of engaging with a broad range of ideas and perspectives that differ from their own.
  • 93 percent said they want their understanding to be broadened and refined through discussion with classmates and professors who differ from themselves.
  • 92 percent said they want to work with classmates who have different perspectives and approaches to solving problems.
  • 94 percent said they want to get better at leading, serving, and working with people from different backgrounds.
  • 94 percent said they want to deepen their respect and empathy for other people.