Home to breathtaking Appalachian views and some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, plus everything in between––North Carolina is a melting pot of rural farming communities to bustling financial centers and family-centered suburbs to quaint southern towns. In the past two decades, however, North Carolina has put itself on the map, graduating from rural tobacco state to a global hub for innovation, research, and groundbreaking technologies in areas such as healthcare, business, computers and technology, medicine, and more.
North Carolina: Diversity and Responsibility in Higher Education
Through the University of North Carolina System, North Carolina strives to make attending college for residents accessible and affordable in order to retain graduates after college. Since North Carolina is such a diverse state, the Department of Higher Education must meet the needs of minorities, underserved populations, and immigrants. In Greensboro, North Carolina––home of the famous Woolworth lunch counter sit-in of 1960––North Carolina A&T University not only educated all four of the sit-in participants but today honors its strong civil rights legacy through specified grant and scholarship programs.
North Carolina is home to Research Triangle Park, one of the largest and oldest research and technology parks in the world. The park covers over 7000 acres with 250 businesses and over 50,000 employees, all working to produce some of the most innovative and groundbreaking research and technologies the world has to offer today. Therefore, colleges and universities in North Carolina have a commitment to keep up with the innovative research that comes out of Research Triangle Park. Schools like Duke University, UNC-Chapel Hill, North Carolina State University, and other private institutions, aim to combine academics with hands-on real-world experience or research opportunities in order to retain graduates who can contribute their imaginations and innovations to the industry in the state.
North Carolina’s Public and Private Colleges
With one of the most prolific systems of higher education in the nation, states across America turn to North Carolina as a leader in organization management for state university systems. The North Carolina University System is comprised of 17 well-known public universities that span the state, including the University of Chapel Hill which, founded in 1795, was the nation’s first public university.
The North Carolina University System has structured its programs based on the state’s sweeping landscapes; the UNC Wilmington, located along the coast, offers one of the best undergraduate programs in Marine Biology found in the nation. In addition to the strong state system, there are a number of additional public and private universities found in North Carolina, one of the most prestigious being Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. To learn more about how the North Carolina University system impacts the state, visit the Impact Map which shows specific contributions across the state.
North Carolina’s Online Degree Programs
Attending school online in North Carolina is easier now than ever before. Because of the state’s rapid economic and industrial growth, residents are looking for ways to advance their careers while attending college or university simultaneously.
All 17 universities in the North Carolina University System participate in online learning programs ranging from Agriculture to Public Administration, and most programs can be completed fully online. Degrees are offered from the associates to professional levels. In addition, private schools of religious affiliation offer online programs as seen at the Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Paying for College in North Carolina
The College Foundation of North Carolina is a wonderful resource for locating funds, grants, and scholarships in the state to attend college from the associates to doctorate levels. The service is free for residents and funded by the state of North Carolina and the collaboration of Pathways, which includes: the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, N.C. Community College System, N.C. Independent Colleges and Universities and The University of North Carolina System.
The North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority (NCSEAA) is another great resource for finding funding for higher education in the state of North Carolina. The organization promotes access to colleges and universities from the associates to professional levels through financial aid and savings programs that support not only the students obtaining a degree, but also their families. Besides public universities and public or state funds, North Carolina also has a number of private scholarship and grant funds, plus funds set aside for women and minorities, which are all available to residents annually.