Dear Carolina Community,
Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court held that universities across the country can no longer consider race when making admissions decisions, marking a fundamental change in the law that governs our admissions process, and that of thousands of other universities.
We will follow the Supreme Court’s decision in all respects. That means race will not be a factor in admissions decisions at the University. It also means we will comply with the Court’s ruling that an applicant’s lived racial experience cannot be credited as “race for race’s sake,” but instead under some circumstances may illuminate an individual’s character and contributions.
As we make these changes, we also will expand opportunity in continued service to the people of our state.
First, Carolina will provide free tuition and required fees for incoming undergraduates from North Carolina whose families make less than $80,000 per year. Beginning with the incoming class in 2024, we will expand the University’s long-standing commitment to access and affordability for North Carolina families. This promise broadens that tradition established by successful and inspiring programs such as the Carolina Covenant and Blue Sky Scholars, among others. We want to make sure students know financial constraints should not stand in the way of their dreams. We will be sharing details about this exciting new opportunity within the next few weeks.
Second, as part of our commitment to reach future Tar Heels throughout the state, we have hired additional outreach officers as part of our admissions team. They are serving in under-resourced communities to spread awareness of our affordability and recruit students from across the state. We want the best students to know that a UNC-Chapel Hill education is a possibility for them.
Our responsibility to comply with the law does not mean we will abandon our fundamental values as a university. We are and will remain passionately public, and we will ensure that every student who earns admission to Carolina can come here and thrive. Our University’s commitment to access and affordability and supporting a culture of belonging for everyone does not change with last week’s ruling.
In our 230-year history, our University has faced many changes. We have seen them as challenges but also opportunities to learn and grow, improving our capacity to serve the people of our state. As chancellor, a member of the faculty for 28 years and a parent of two recent graduates, I know our community creates strength from all our differences. We can’t lose different perspectives and experiences in the classroom that give depth to our discussions and make our work impactful. In the months and years to come, we will continue to strive to build upon our vibrant community.
Kevin M. Guskiewicz