Thursday, June 11, 2009

UNC Homepages Will Be Down July 1 until August

The Office of Undergraduate Admissions will be migrating to a new information system between July 1 and early August. As a result, students’ personal UNC homepages will be unavailable during this time.

We expect to post our new online application once the migration is completed. In the meantime, if you’d like to get an early start, please see our essay prompts.

During the migration, if you’d like to register for a campus tour, please see our Visit page. If you registered for a campus tour before July 1, you do not need to register again.

Thank you for your patience as we bring up our new system. As always, if we may help you in any way, please do not hesitate to contact us.

--Stephen Farmer

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Choosing Senior Year Courses

Now that we've wrapped up our work on the class that will enter this fall, we're turning our attention in earnest to the classes that will follow. If you're thinking about applying next year, I hope you've already seen our essay questions, and I wish you luck with them. And if you're still debating which classes you should take, I hope what follows will be helpful.

We generally like to see students take at least one course in each of the five core academic disciplines--English, math, foreign language, lab science, and social science--right through to the end of their senior year. We also like to see students taking the top course offered in most of these disciplines--say, at least four out of the five--by the time they're seniors.

We think this way not because this is a formula that every student must rigidly follow, but because this kind of curriculum comes closer than any other to the kind our students pursue in their first two years at Carolina. And since one purpose of admission is to make a good match between student and school, it makes sense to us to take into account the courses our candidates are taking in high school, and whether those courses match well with the courses we expect students to take at Carolina.

Again, this is general guidance--not a formula, and not a guarantee of any particular outcome, good or bad. Great students may have good and thoughtful reasons for doing something different--and if that's the case, we'd love to hear about those reasons through the applications these students eventually submit.

Good luck this summer, and beyond. And please let us know if we may help you in any way.

--Stephen Farmer

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Transfer Waitlist

Thanks for everyone's patience as we've finalized the transfer waiting list. As I shared earlier this week, we had a very strong response from our admitted students, so unfortunately there have been very few spaces to offer to our waitlisted candidates.

We plan to post final decisions on your homepages by the end of the day tomorrow (Thursday, 6/4). Your official letters will arrive within a day or two after that. In all, we were only able to admit about 15 students from the waitlist. We are keeping about 10 students on the waitlist in the case that additional spaces open up in the next couple weeks. All students will have a decision no later than June 30.

Again, I'm sorry that we've had to disappoint so many of you. We had every hope of having space in the class for you, but we've just had so many talented students interested in Carolina this year. Please let us know how we can help as you move forward with your college careers, and let me know what questions you have.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Final 2010 Essay Questions

Thanks to everyone who voted for their favorite essay questions. We've now finalized the seven essay prompts for the 2010 First-Year Application. So now you can spend your entire summer vacation crafting your essays if you like. The rest of the application will be available by mid-August.

Below are the new essay prompts. You'll respond to two of the prompts below. One of your essays should be short (about 250 words), and one essay should be longer(about 500 words).
  1. People find many ways to express their inner world. Some write novels; others paint, perform, or debate; still others design elegant solutions to complex mathematical problems. How do you express your inner world, and how does the world around you respond?
  2. It’s easy to identify with the hero—the literary or historical figure who saves the day. Have you ever identified with a figure who wasn’t a hero—a villain or a scapegoat, a bench-warmer or a bit player? If so, tell us why this figure appealed to you—and if your opinion changed over time, tell us about that, too.
  3. Carolina students conduct original research and work to solve problems in almost every imaginable field. If you could spend a semester researching a specific topic or problem, what would you choose and why?
  4. After your long and happy life, your family must choose no more than a dozen words to adorn your headstone. What do you hope they choose, and why?
  5. We tend to spend our time doing the things we know we do well—running because we’re good runners or painting because we’re talented artists. Tell us about a time when you tried something for which you had no talent. How did it go?
  6. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? What’s the best you’ve ever given?
  7. If you have written an essay for another school’s application that you really like, feel free to use it as your short or long essay for us. Please be sure to tell us (a) what essay you are answering and (b) why you think this essay represents you well (your explanation will not be included in the essay word count).