UNC-Chapel Hill

UNC football Mack Brown
Ben McKeown / AP

North Carolina coach Mack Brown hasn’t tried to dismiss the high expectations that are following his 18th-ranked Tar Heels entering Saturday’s season-opening visit from Syracuse.

Beer cans, beer bottle and red solo cups on a table
Melissa O'Donohue / Flickr / CC

“Colleges may want to blame student partying for not allowing them to reopen successfully, but they have forfeited the moral authority to do so,” writes former Tar Heel Chancellor Holden Thorp in “The Chronicle of Higher Education.” Alternately decrying and advertising the party scene during his time in university leadership, Thorp confesses that fraternities and sororities play a key role in school finances. 

UNC Students Reflect On Start Of Chaotic Fall Semester

Aug 24, 2020
COVID safety signs on the quad at UNC - Chapel Hill.
Erin Batten-Hicks / For WUNC

Many students at the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill are trying to focus through feelings of frustration over being asked to leave a week into the fall semester. Campus orders for students to evacuate came after a series of COVID-19 clusters were reported at the school.

UNC-Chapel Hill covid masks
Gerry Broome / AP

As North Carolina college students return to campuses to resume in-person classes, universities are providing infrequent coronavirus updates with wildly different levels of transparency.

Meanwhile, two schools in the University of North Carolina System reported new COVID-19 clusters.

The Old Well on the UNC- Chapel Hill campus.
Brian Batista / For WUNC

This story was originally published by ProPublica. ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox.

The mouse infected with a lab-created type of SARS coronavirus was squirming upside down, dangling by its tail as a scientist carried it to a weighing container one day in February 2016. But the mundane task turned dangerous in seconds inside the North Carolina laboratory, which has drawn scrutiny for its partnership on similar research with China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology.

photo of drive-thru coronavirus testing in Chatham County
Staff Sgt. Mary Junell / U.S. Army Photo

While UNC-Chapel Hill moves all of its undergraduate classes online this week due to a recent spike in COVID-19 cases among its students, several other universities in the UNC System are facing smaller outbreaks.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill announced Monday that it will be moving all undergraduate classes online after the university reported 130 new positive COVID-19 cases among students and multiple clusters of cases. 

Host Dave DeWitt examines how some students are responding to the change of plans by the university after a stressful first week of the fall semester.

We also hear about the efforts of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in western North Carolina in combating the spread of COVID-19, and how their tradition of collective responsibility has helped keep the virus at bay.
 


A photo of a tunnel at the Coker Arboretum in Chapel Hill.
Ildar Sagdejev / Wikimedia Commons

A week after students returned for a combination of in-person and online classes, leadership at UNC-Chapel Hill moved to fully online learning in response to a surge of COVID-19 on campus. The positive testing rate among students rose from 2.8% in the week of Aug. 3 to Aug. 9 to 13.6% in the week of Aug. 10 to Aug. 16. 130 positive cases were reported during that period.

The Old Well and flowers on the campus of UNC- Chapel Hill.
Brian Batista / For WUNC

Updated at 4:18 p.m.

Effective Wednesday, UNC Chapel Hill will move all undergraduate classes to remote learning.

UNC Facilities

Students are beginning to arrive back on campuses across the UNC System, and workers are concerned for their own safety amid early accounts of inconsistent mask-wearing and large social gatherings on campuses.

There are now more than 130,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in North Carolina, as a result of more than 2 million conducted tests. But testing is not the only method to determine the prevalence of the virus in a community.

Researchers are also analyzing the wastewater in sewage systems to determine levels of COVID-19 in several towns and cities across the state.

Host Dave DeWitt talks with Dr. Rachel Noble, professor of marine sciences at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, about her team’s wastewater research and how it can improve efforts to slow the spread of the virus.

We also hear about a new study that asked people across the country how they have experienced pandemic-related stress.
 


Gerry Broome / AP Photo

The board of trustees at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill voted Wednesday to end a moratorium on renaming campus buildings and landmarks.

Baric Lab
UNC-Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health / UNC-CH

Labs across the world are scrambling to develop a vaccine for COVID-19. But just as important is a more immediate treatment. The treatment the World Health Organization has classified as the most promising is coming out of a lab at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health.

UNC Chapel Hill law student Maya Weinstein is among the students advocating for the University to boost its investment in sexual assault prevention.
Liz Schlemmer / WUNC

About three thousand undergraduate women start their college careers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill each fall. By the time they graduate, nearly half are likely to experience sexual assault or misconduct. A quarter are likely to experience assaults that meet the definition of rape -- and that’s only the women.

 

An image of UNC's Old Well
yeungb / Wikipedia Creative Commons

A new campus climate report shows that more than 20 percent of students surveyed at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill experienced forceful or non-consensual sexual touching or penetration.  The survey was conducted at 33 leading research universities by the Association for American Universities.

Sonny Kelly on stage
Huth Photography/Courtesy of Sonny Kelly

North Carolina playwright, actor and teacher Sonny Kelly has made it his mission in life to inspire others. He aims to use performance and ministry to connect with people, especially marginalized kids. As a young man in the U.S. Air Force, Kelly felt like he had no real purpose or direction in his life.

The highest paid presidents of private universities in the nation in 2016.
Chronicle of Higher Education

High Point University President Nido Qubein was once again the highest paid leader of a college or university in North Carolina.

A picture of UNC grad turning their graduation tassle
UNC-Chapel Hill

Proud grads in cap and gowns walk across the stage this weekend at commencement ceremonies around the state.

Don McCullough / Flickr

Updated at 11:20 a.m.

UNC spokesman Randy Young said no arrests had been made as of Tuesday morning.

Updated at 7 p.m.

UNC Police have taken out arrest warrants for two suspects involved in the racist vandalism on University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's campus, said UNC Police spokesperson Randy Young.

UNC Police said they are "conducting a thorough criminal investigation" and "will not be releasing any details that could impede that investigation or subsequent prosecution," including the language used in the graffiti.

Barricades have been reerected around the Unsung Founders Memorial "to deter future incidents," and police "continue to monitor any threats to the campus," according to Young.

Updated at 3:30 p.m.

Early Sunday morning, two individuals defaced the Unsung Founders Memorial on the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's campus with racist graffiti, according to a statement issued by UNC-CH Interim Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz. The memorial is located in McCorkle Place at the heart of the campus, not far from the site where the Silent Sam Confederate monument was toppled and the base later removed.

The Old Well and flowers on the campus of UNC- Chapel Hill.
Brian Batista / For WUNC

The University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill has a new interim chancellor.

UNC Trustees
Dave DeWitt / WUNC

Despite a second long, closed-door meeting in the span of a few days, the University of North Carolina Board of Trustees has yet to announce the selection of an interim chancellor.

Graduate student Lindsay Ayling speaks to a couple dozens activists about outgoing Chancellor Carol Folt's decision to remove the Silent Sam pedestal from campus.
Rusty Jacobs / WUNC

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chancellor Carol Folt will leave her post at the end of the month. In a university wide email on Monday, she first announced she would leave this spring. But after the UNC Board of Governors called an emergency meeting, the board moved up her resignation to January 31.

Folt’s tenure came amidst an ongoing battle over Silent Sam, the Confederate monument in McCorkle Place that was torn down by protesters in August. 

Silent Sam on UNC-Chapel Hill's campus is a controversial Confederate symbol.
Don McCullough / Flickr Creative Commons

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Board of Trustees issued their recommendation Monday for the future of the confederate Silent Sam monument. The board wants to see the statue housed in a $5.3M history center on south campus. The news prompted protest among the students and faculty on campus who do not want the statue re-erected on any part of the campus.

William Keyes
Courtesy of UNC Chapel Hill

A current member of the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees is bringing a unique perspective to his deliberations on Silent Sam, the Confederate monument torn down by protesters in August. William Keyes once worked as a paid political operative for the government of South Africa during apartheid.

In this Dec. 30, 2013 file photo, Texas coach Mack Brown walks onto the field following the Valero Alamo Bowl NCAA college football game against Oregon in San Antonio.
Eric Gay / AP

Updated 8:55 a.m. Nov. 27, 2018

North Carolina has officially hired Mack Brown as the Tar Heels next football coach.  

File photo of Maya Little, a UNC graduate student arrested at a Silent Sam rally earlier this year.
Gabriella Bulgarelli / WUNC

A judge declined Monday to punish a black University of North Carolina graduate student who admitted to pouring red ink and her own blood on a Confederate statue in a headline-grabbing protest that preceded the statue's toppling months later.

Image for stories to save lives
Southern Oral History Program / Center for the Study of the American South

Cardiologist Dr. Ross Simpson has spent years studying premature sudden death. He investigates why people between the ages of 18-64 with no pre-existing conditions are dying in North Carolina. 

The base of the Confederate monument at UNC-Chapel Hill known as Silent Sam was doused in red Monday, April 30, 2018
Courtesy of Will Partin

A Confederate monument nicknamed Silent Sam has been standing on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill since 1913.

Classroom
WUNC File Photo

High school students across the state have been staging or planning walkouts to protest gun violence after the school shooting in Parkland, Fla., but some worry that colleges and universities will not admit them if they are suspended for doing so.

Courtesy of Gabrielle Calvocoressi

Poet Gabrielle Calvocoressi has become less and less comfortable viewing the world through the prisms of sex or gender. 

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