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Meet Carolina’s newest class

This fall’s cohort of first-year and transfer students is the largest and most diverse in University history. Here are some highlights.

Students walking into Kenan Stadium.
The Convocation event for new students was held on Aug. 16, 2021, at Kenan Stadium. (Johnny Andrews/UNC-Chapel Hill)

Today begins a much-needed fall break for Carolina students, including the newest, who represent the largest and most diverse cohort in University history. This fall, Carolina welcomed 5,630 new students, including 4,688 first-year and 942 transfer students.

They hail from 95 countries, 45 states and 94 of North Carolina’s 100 counties, with 36% of in-state students coming from rural counties.

Among them, 21% identified as Asian or Asian American; 12% identified as Black or African American; 10% identified as Hispanic or Latinx; and 2% identified as Native American or Alaskan Native. More than a quarter, 27%, speak a language other than English.

And 19% will be the first in their families to graduate from college.

More than 200 of Carolina’s newest students graduated from schools served by the Carolina College Advising Corps.

Around one-third of the transfer students most recently attended a North Carolina Community College.

And the students in this new cohort are open-minded and educationally ambitious: 82% chose to attend Carolina for its welcoming and inclusive environment; 94% want to get better at leading, serving and working with people from different backgrounds; and 82% plan to continue their education after earning an undergraduate degree.

Where are they from?

A map of the United States, with a dot on each state identifying number of students. North Carolina has the most students. The graphic also has text that says "4,363 students are North Carolina and 1,267 are from out of the state."Students hail from 95 countries, 45 states and 94 NC counties. 36% of all NC students are from rural counties. 19% are first-generation college students. 211 graduated in schools served by the Carolina College Advising Corps. 36% transfered from a north Carolina community college. Admissions: total applications received

A line graph that shows continual growth of applications recieved from 2011 to 2021.Admissions: admitted and enrolled

A line graph that shots number of admitted students increasing from 7,800 to over 10,000 from 2011 to 2021, and the number of students enrolled increasing from 4,000 to nearly 6,000 in the same time frame.Academic credentials

12% of first-year students were valedictorians or salutatorians. 74% of first-year students were in the top 10% of their class. 95% of first-year students took more than five college-level courses in high school

A bright future at Carolina and beyond: goals for the newest class

Top five majors are biology, business, psychology, computer science and political science. Most mentioned future careers are physician, business executive, researcher, lawyer or judge, computer programmer and engineer.