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“It’s a great day to be a Tar Heel” is a phrase you’ll often hear around Carolina, and for a good reason.
Every day, Tar Heels create a positive impact on the world by improving their communities and inspiring change through their talents. They’re artists, scientists, humanitarians, researchers and innovators doing extraordinary things.
Football was the biggest part of Spencer Devine’s life growing up. After high school, when most football players call it quits, Devine wasn’t looking to let it go. He has continued to keep his connection to football over the past three years as a member of Carolina’s competitive flag football club, which competes against teams from other North Carolina colleges and at regional tournaments.
When they're not studying or in class, Tala Farah and Reghan Flores enjoy volunteering in the community. When those options were cut off in the early days of the pandemic, they turned to an old medium: letter writing. That experience led to the founding of Letters from Rameses, a new student group that organizes students to write cards and letters for patients in the hospital.
After he first toured Carolina's WXYC radio studio, Roland Martin knew exactly where he was meant to be. He has spent his past three years as a Tar Heel hosting a show, exploring new music and finding his voice on the air. Martin is now the station’s music director, bringing that passion to more DJs.
During her first few weeks at Carolina, Selina Shi was struck by the stark difference between Asian American representation in Chapel Hill and her hometown. She didn’t feel entirely part of the student body she had just joined. As an active member of the UNC Asian American Center, she has been working to ensure future generations of Asian American Tar Heels don’t experience that same feeling.
UNC Campus EMS co-directors Sarah Torzone and Ishan Khosla have always known they wanted to be doctors and got a head start as teenagers by becoming certified EMTs. They've brought their passion to Carolina to launch UNC Campus EMS to care for the community while also preparing other Tar Heel EMTs for futures in medical careers.
Senior Ashley Dos Santos knew that Carolina's makerspaces were where she belonged even before she was officially a Tar Heel. Now an active member in the Be A Maker Network, she's working to bring the world of making to more students.
Learn more Andrew's and Owen's project
This summer, Andrew Buchanan and Owen Ryerson made the arduous trek to the Arrigetch Peaks in remote Alaska to collect rock samples for an independent research project that aims to answer big questions about the mountains.
Read more about Madyson's research
There are currently more than 4,000 identified exoplanets, and senior Madyson Barber is searching for more. She recently became one of two Carolina undergrads to be named an NC Space Grant Undergraduate Research Scholar.
Read a Q&A with Nihar
Carolina junior Nihar Vaidya is combining his majors of computer science and statistics and analytics to predict when patients may encounter seizures caused by epilepsy.
A classically trained cellist, he has traveled across the world playing for audiences. He's found a new home in Chapel Hill. Now a first-year dental student at the UNC Adams School of Dentistry, Liakhovetski is applying the skills and discipline he gained from his music to his academic studies.
Emma Schieck reached the pinnacle of the sport she loves when she won a gold medal at the Tokyo Summer Paralympics as a member of the U.S. sitting volleyball team. She's using that platform to promote adaptive sports and the athletes to open doors for future competitors.
Junior Jonathan Thai has been captivated by magic since first he saw his cousin perform a card trick years ago. As he works on mastering the craft himself, he’s bringing his passion for magic to Chapel Hill and creating a community of Tar Heel magicians in a new student organization.
A huge sports fan, Marisa Rauwald wanted to be near the action. That’s what brought the Durham native to Carolina and the UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media in the first place. Since earning her degree in May 2020, Rauwald has been a part of some of the world's biggest sporting events as a staff member of NBC Sports.
Tim Walker has known he wanted to be a teacher since he was a kid. After earning his bachelor’s degree in anthropology from Carolina in 2017, followed by a Master of Arts in Teaching at the UNC School of Education in 2018, Walker has accomplished that goal. He now teaches social studies at Carrboro High School, a job he finds immensely rewarding.
When Clare MacDonald ’19 came to Carolina in the fall of 2015, she didn’t know what she wanted to major in. She had no idea what shape her future career would take. Now, as a product designer at LinkedIn, MacDonald has not only charted a successful career path for herself — she’s helping others do the same.
Tyrell Carter '21 got his first taste of entrepreneurship when he was in fifth grade and he was homeless and was selling bookmarks at school. He remembers sitting at the corner of the street in his hoodie and khaki shorts and thinking, “I’m going to be the greatest who ever lived.” He's now the the founder and CEO of his own company.