Update: The installation has concluded. You can view Chancellor Holden Thorp's remarks here.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will install Dr. Holden Thorp as its 10th chancellor on University Day, Oct. 12, the birthday of the nation’s oldest state university. Thorp will give an installation address, and the University will honor distinguished alumni during a festive ceremony steeped in campus history. Everone in the Carolina family – students, staff, faculty, alumni, parents and friends – is invited to attend.
- The ceremony, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 3 p.m. in Polk Place, the quadrangle between South Building and Wilson Library.
- Reception to follow in Polk Place.
- Hearing-impaired guests needing an interpreter should contact the Department of Disability Services, 919-962-8300 (V/T).
- If rain is forecast, an official announcement will be made in advance about moving the ceremony to the Dean E. Smith Center.
University Day began in 1877 to commemorate the 1793 placing of the cornerstone of Old East, the nation’s first state university building. Since 1957, the University has installed its chancellors on this day.
The UNC Board of Governors unanimously elected Thorp as chancellor last May, and he started work on July 1. A 1986 UNC graduate, Thorp, 44, has progressed through several leadership posts since joining the faculty 15 years ago. A native of Fayetteville, he is a Kenan Professor of Chemistry and an award-winning teacher and researcher. Thorp was the unanimous choice of the Chancellor Search Committee. He was nominated to the UNC System's Board of Governors by UNC President Erskine Bowles. Previously, he was dean of the University’s College of Arts and Sciences.
Next stage in the University's Journey
"University Day is one of the most important days of the year at Carolina, and the installation of Chancellor Thorp trumpets the next stage of the continuing journey for our University," said Joe Templeton, chair of the faculty. "We hope the Carolina family – students, staff, faculty, alumni, parents and friends – and the community will attend, both to show their support and to hear Chancellor Thorp describe his vision for the University."
A concert by the UNC Symphony Band, the UNC Wind Ensemble and the Carolina Choir, will begin at 2:40 p.m. Hundreds of faculty, students, staff, alumni, visiting dignitaries and leaders will process at 3:00 p.m.
Patricia Timmons-Goodson, associate justice of the N.C. Supreme Court, will administer the oath of office, and UNC President Erskine Bowles will preside. Other speakers will represent the UNC Board of Governors, the University’s Board of Trustees, faculty, students, staff and the UNC General Alumni Association.
Distinguished Alumna/Alumnas Awards
At the ceremony, the University will also present Distinguished Alumna/Alumnus Awards to William Joseph Bynum Jr., chief executive officer and president of ECD/HOPE (Enterprise Corporation of the Delta and Hope Community Credit Union), a private non-profit community development financial institution; Dr. Leah McCall Devlin, State Health Director, N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public Health; Mary Wilmer (Molly) Barker, founder and vision keeper of Girls on the Run International, an experiential learning program for girls ages 8 to 13; Dr. Walter Lowry Caudill, retired worldwide president of pharmaceutical development for Cardinal Health and co-founder of Magellan Laboratories; and Dr. Debra Wehrle Stewart, president of the Council of Graduate Schools, the only national organization dedicated solely to advancing graduate education and research.