Wednesday, October 31, 2012

EA Update and this Week's FAQs

Thanks to all who submitted their applications for the Early Action deadline. We received about 15,000 applications, and we're now hard at work reviewing them. At this point, all EA applicants should have received the email with instructions on how to create your Guest ID so that you can sign into MyCarolina and review the status of your application and supplemental materials. (This email goes out within a few days after you submit your application.) From your Student Center, you can view your Admissions To-Do List which will list any outstanding application materials. You can also scroll to the bottom of the page to view the official test scores we've received.

As you check your To-Do List, please keep in mind that it can take us a bit of time to link submitted materials to your application. If materials are sent separately from the rest of your application (especially via postal mail), it can take several weeks for us to link these documents to your application and update your To-Do List. There's no need to contact us about missing items unless it's been more than four weeks since you submitted them. In all likelihood, your To-Do List will update in good time.

Below are some of the FAQs we're getting this week. Let us know what other questions you have! (But first you might want to check out our previous FAQ post, as you may find the answer to your question there). Thanks!

I already submitted my application. Can I add information to it now?
If you have an important addition or revision to your application, feel free to email it to us at Please include your full name and birth date so we can easily link this information to your application.

Do I need to send an official AP score report?
Supplemental testing, including AP, IB, and SAT II testing, is entirely optional, so it's up to you whether you'd like us to consider this information. We don't need an official score report for the admissions review, you can self-report these scores on your application. However, keep in mind that if you are admitted and choose to enroll at Carolina, we'll need the official score report in order to award placement/credit for the scores.

I'm planning to change my course schedule. Do I need to notify UNC?
Yes. It's important that you let us know if you make any changes to your schedule after submitting your application. Email us at and let us know what changes you've made to your schedule, as well as the reason for the change. We'll include this information with your application.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Q&A with Assured Journalism Student Thomas Gooding

Next up in our Q&A series: the Assured Journalism program. Through Assured Journalism, students not only get assured admission to the J-school, but early exposure to all the resources within the school and special coursework that allows them to jump-start their studies. To tell us more about the program, here's Thomas Gooding, a first-year from High Point, NC.  (Get more info about all nine special opportunities that we offer to incoming first-year students here and here.) 

Madison Morgan (left), Elizabeth Gooding, and me at Relay for Life on campus
What do you hope to do with your degree in journalism?
I plan to pursue a specialization in reporting, multimedia or electronic communication. With my degree, I hope to investigate human rights and international conflict as a reporter or foreign correspondent for a national news organization.

What past experiences made you want to study journalism?
My mom is a graduate of the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Journalism, and her experiences as a reporter have inspired me to pursue a career as a journalist. She helped convey the significant influence of journalism in facilitating conversation and inspiring change.

In addition, many experiences in high school nurtured my interest in journalism. I had the opportunity to write a monthly opinion column for my local paper, through which I realized the value of challenging readers to consider important issues that affect our community. Overall, my experiences helped me understand the importance of informing the world and thus fostering positive change.

What are some of the benefits of being in the Assured Journalism program?
Students in the program have the opportunity to explore the field early in their careers at UNC-Chapel Hill. A wonderful benefit of the program is the opportunity to interact with top professors at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, which allows students to build relationships and gain the individual attention necessary to excel at the school. The program challenges students to think creatively and profoundly, gain new perspectives of mass communication and discover their potential as journalists. Through the Assured Journalism program, I have developed confidence as a student and gained an opportunity to pursue my goals in my first year of college.

Any study abroad, internship, extracurricular, or other interesting experiences you’ve had or plan to pursue?
The opportunities available through the Assured Journalism program and the School of Journalism and Mass Communication are many. I hope to write for The Daily Tar Heel, the student-run newspaper at UNC-Chapel Hill, which has earned numerous national awards and honors. I also hope to participate in broadcast and multimedia journalism through Carolina Week and Reese News.

Neha Kukreja, a fellow UNC student, and me in Alaska
through a scholarship program at Carolina
Academically, the school offers a unique opportunity in conjunction with UNC’s Kenan-Flagler Business School to pursue business journalism. It is just one of the many specializations offered, from photojournalism to electronic communication.

 In addition, I would love to take advantage of the study abroad opportunity in London, which boasts state-of-the-art multimedia studios and contact with professionals from the BBC, The Times and The Guardian. The study abroad programs in Spain, Argentina, France and Australia are also exceptional opportunities.

Why did you choose Carolina?
The liberal arts education that Carolina offers can be summed up in one word: opportunity. The diversity of disciplines and fields of study at Carolina allows students to explore beyond their immediate interests and discover their greatest passions. It allows students to learn how to think critically, search for innovative solutions to problems and make important decisions.

Community and diversity are incredible aspects of the Carolina family. Not only racial and cultural diversity, but also diversity of study, opportunity, and exposure to new ideas and issues. At Carolina, students know that they can be themselves. We celebrate the value of each individual and the uniqueness of his or her background.

Most importantly, the Carolina family is dedicated to helping students and faculty succeed. Opportunities inside the classroom and in the community, local and international, provide every student with what it is he or she needs to excel. The Carolina community is dedicated to each Tar Heel with the trust that he or she will make a positive impact on the world.

What else would you tell prospective students who are interested in studying journalism at Carolina?
The UNC-Chapel Hill School of Journalism and Mass Communication is one of the most distinguished in the United States. Students in the school learn from top professors who have worked with major news organizations and come from diverse backgrounds of journalism experience. There are numerous opportunities on campus for students to immerse themselves in journalism. It is truly an exceptional and rewarding program.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Carolina Student for a Day

Admissions Intern Will is back today with another video featuring our admissions counselors--if you missed the first video in which we introduced ourselves, you can check it out here.

Song of the Day: “Another Day In Paradise,” Phil Collins

What would you do if you were a Carolina student for a day? I know what I do. Click here to read all about it. I spend a lot of time in Carroll Hall and other places, but my days are numbered. (Shhh! Don’t remind me.) I only have a few more days in paradise… err Chapel Hill. (Seriously! Shut up!) At least as a student. Who knows where I’ll be after I graduate. (That’s better.)

Find out what our admissions counselors would do, where they would go, what they would see if they could get out of Jackson Hall for 24 hours.

Tell us what you would do in the comments, and let us know what questions you want the admissions counselors to answer. I’ll make sure to ask them.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Q&A with Global Gap Fellow Maggie Armstrong

Ever consider a gap year? More students than ever are taking a year off after high school to travel, serve, and get some real-world experiences before starting college. Maggie Armstrong is a first-year student at Carolina who was in the inaugural class of Global Gap Year Fellows. This program, run by the Campus Y, awards $7500 to seven incoming first-year students to fund a gap year that combines international travel and service. The Campus Y also provides support and planning resources before, during, and after the gap year. Learn more about the Fellowship, and read on for Maggie's amazing stories of her gap year. 

How did you decide to take a gap year? Did you have a hard time convincing your parents?
I decided to take a gap year for many reasons. Like many others, I was burnt out after a rigorous high school experience. I wanted to continue learning, but I desperately wanted to do so outside of the classroom. When I told my parents that I wanted to take a Gap Year they actually laughed. They were certain that I couldn't figure out how to finance the trip. They were also worried about my safety in a place that neither of us understood.

After months of research, assuring them that I was capable of handling myself, and receiving the Global Gap Year Fellowship, they were finally both on board. Once I had convinced them that a gap year was the right step for me my life got much easier.

Where did you go? What did you do?
I went to Yumen, Gansu, China, a small northwestern town located in the outskirts of the Gobi Desert. I was an oral English teacher in a public high school. I was a part of the Amity Young Teachers Program, a program consisting of 12 college-age students teaching in Gansu, China.

How did you fund your gap year?
I funded my gap year almost entirely with the Global Gap Year Fellowship.

Best day abroad?
My best day abroad was the day that I entered Lhasa, Tibet. After a thirty-seven hour train ride, I stepped out into a refreshingly cold city that was entirely different than anything I had previously experienced. Every winter Tibetan Buddhists go on pilgrimages to the holiest of Buddhist temples, such as Drepung Potala Palace. The winter is also a season devoid of tourists, because few people are enticed by the bitter cold of a Tibetan winter. As a result, I believe that I witnessed the most authentically holy and spiritual version of Tibet possible. The market streets of Lhasa were crammed with men and women performing daily prayer, and lively market people selling prayer flags, fruits for sacrifice, and jewelry. The monasteries were alive with elderly and young people alike praying aloud, chanting mantras and singing. The countryside was littered with devout Buddhists trekking to the nearest and the farthest temples. I knew in just my first day that I was witnessing something mind-numbingly authentic, spiritual, and human.

Toughest day abroad?
Honestly, my toughest day abroad was my first. Of course, as with any given period of time, there were many days to follow that were less than spectacular. However, looking back, the only day that I remember being truly scared, or bewildered, and the only day that I remember doubting my choice to go on a gap year was my first full day. Before I made my way to Yumen, the town that would later become my home, I spent four days in Nanjing, China meeting with and learning about my position from the Amity Foundation. The orientation with Amity was great, however, afterwards I was alone, in a strange city, in a strange country, that spoke a language that I knew nothing of. Unlike many countries, essentially no one in China speaks more than 10 words of English. This meant that I had no way to figure out where I was going, what I could do, or even what food I was eating. I found myself aimlessly wandering around the city, and while this was thrilling, and I at times I was elated with where I was, I was also terrified.

How did the Campus Y and the Fellowship resources help with support/planning/transition?
The best thing that the Fellowship has done for me is helping me transition into life at UNC. After spending a year abroad, learning on my feet, and experiencing cultures entirely different from my own, I find that I want to share how I have changed, what I have changed, and how I hope to change the world in the future. The Gappl, the Campus Y and the Fellowship have provided a great outlet for this, because the other people in my life can only deal with so much of this. I also find that these experiences have put me in a very different place than many of my classmates. I am thrilled that there is an established group of people who I know can relate to my struggles, my joys and my interests.

How did your time abroad change you and your outlook?
My single year abroad changed me more than any other time period in my entire life. Some of the changes are obvious. I am more relaxed. I can speak Chinese. I can barely go two days without craving tofu.Alternatively, some changes happened deep within me. I look at the world entirely differently than before. When someone does something strange, I am conscious to consider why they have done it, rather than how uncomfortable it is or how it affects me. I understand that differences in culture always come from something basic, and in that way even the strangest things have a beauty.

What would you tell prospective first-year students who are considering a gap year?
I would tell them to stop considering and start actively looking for a placement. I do not know a single person who regrets their gap year, and I know very few people who do not consider their gap year to be the most influential experience of their lives. I honestly wish that everyone would take gap years because they do great things for individuals and great things for the world.

Thank you, Maggie, for sharing your story with us!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Meet Melody Levy

Next up in our new staff introductions is Melody Levy. Welcome Melody!

Title: Assistant Director
Hometown: This is a tough question…I have lived in the Chapel Hill/Carrboro area since 2000, but previously I lived in upstate New York for 10 years. Before that, I moved a lot because my dad was in the military. I have made North Carolina my home, and my parents have since moved to Macon GA so that's my second home.
Alma Mater: UNC-Chapel Hill (bachelor’s in political science and African-American studies; master’s in education)
Time at Carolina: 12 years (six as a student; six as an employee)

Area of specialty in the office: I am the director of the Admissions Ambassadors program, which is our troop of 130 student volunteers who lead campus tours, sit on recruitment event panels, host visitors, and represent the best of Carolina!

Why I love my job: I get to serve my alma mater and work with incredible Carolina students (to recruit more incredible students to Carolina)!

Why I believe you should apply to Carolina: To be one of the incredible students I mentioned above. Carolina offers an outstanding academic experience at an affordable cost. Plus, our students make an indelible mark while enrolled and after graduation. Our students arrive well-rounded and leave more equipped and prepared to tackle their careers or graduate/professional school. This is what you can look forward to and the legacy that you can be a part of!

When out on recruiting trips, I like to: Live in the moment, enjoy the place I am visiting, and help students gather the information necessary to make the best decision about their educational journey.

If I didn't work in admissions, I would be: Creating children's books! I've actually self-published two titles already.

If I were a fictional character, I would be: A Marvel Comics super-heroine!
Favorite ice cream flavor: Strawberry cheesecake (and many others)
Favorite song to sing when I’m in the car by myself: Anything upbeat and/or uplifting that I know the words to

Friday, October 12, 2012

Q&A with an Assured Business Student

Over the next couple weeks, I'll be sharing some Q&As with students who are taking part in some of the special opportunities that we offer to enrolling first-year students. (Get more info about these opportunities in this blog post from last year.) Today, we welcome Myles Robinson, a sophomore who is a part of the Assured Business Program offered by the Kenan-Flagler Business School. 

How did you choose to study business and what would you like to do with your degree?
I was selected as a member of the Assured Admission Program during my freshman year. I'd like to concentrate in marketing and use my degree to work in the sports business industry. My ultimate goal is to become a marketing executive for an NBA franchise.

What are some of the benefits of being in the Assured Business program?
The biggest benefit of being in the program is the network one is able to build early in his or her academic career. Students have the ability to not only engage with Kenan-Flagler faculty and staff during their first year but also benefit from their peers in the Assured Admission class, who are some of the most talented young business leaders at Carolina. Through the various career and professional development sessions offered through the program, I’ve been able to discover my leadership capabilities and move in a positive direction in pursuit of my short-term and long-term goals.

Any study abroad, internships, or other interesting experiences you’ve had or plan to pursue?
As a member of the Minority Business Student Alliance (MBSA), a club with the Kenan-Flagler Business School, I was in charge of a six-person committee during my first year. Our team was instructed with creating a program catered to freshman students interested in gaining acceptance into the Kenan-Flagler Business School. With the help of my committee members and the utilization of my social media marketing skills on Facebook and Twitter, I was able to attract more than 75 freshman students to a standing-room only venue.

Moreover, the Assured Admission Program has afforded me the opportunity to stay abroad in Costa Rica during spring break and China during the summer. Lastly, I worked as a financial analyst intern for the Charlotte Bobcats (NBA team) during the summer.

What else would you tell prospective students who are considering Carolina?
When I began applying to prospective schools, UNC’s dedication to diversity and familial atmosphere attracted me the most. Although other schools may have African American, Asian American, Latin American, Native American, and Hispanics represented on their campus, I don’t think they integrate these groups like UNC does. The Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs intentionally recruits and targets minorities who are first generation college students and come from low income and rural backgrounds to come to campus.

But diversity here isn’t limited to race and/or socioeconomic condition. There’s a diversity of thought as well as background and geography. Whether I walk across the pit or walk into the Student Union for a quick study break, I constantly see students of different ethnicities and backgrounds intermingling with each other. So much of what people at Carolina learn, I’m discovering, they learn through their interrelations with one another. Having diversity on campus from students of such assorted backgrounds enhances the overall learning experience. Since day one, my feelings about the people here and the overall campus vibe haven’t changed. I think it’s important for prospective students to understand they really can find their own niche here at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Get to Know Admissions

Song of the Day: “Video Killed the Radio Star,” The Buggles

Everyone knows big, bad, evil UNC admissions, right? Well, now you get to see their big, bad, evil, smiling (… wait, what?) faces. That’s right. I’m Will Rimer, a senior at UNC. (No, I don’t have a job, and no I don’t know what I’m going to do for the rest of my life. I know what I want to do, but I haven’t met Emma Watson or Anna Kendrick yet, so we’ll see about that. PS-If you haven’t seen Pitch Perfect, kindly go to your nearest overpriced movie theater and watch it. Then come back and finish this.)

Right, about me. Well, I’m also a social media intern in the admissions office. I started all the way back in August. When I walked into Jackson Hall for the first time (yup, I’d never been inside the all-powerful Office of Undergraduate Admissions (did you read “all-powerful Office of Undergraduate Admissions” in the fear-inducing tone I intended you to read it in? No? Well, do it over again)), you know what I found? People. Real human beings actually work in admissions. And you know what? They’re actually pretty normal human beings too.

They’re just like us. They have names and are from all over the map and have lived in all kinds of places, like Chicago, Los Angeles and Belgium (wait a minute… Belgium)!

I think this video I put together by interviewing some admissions counselors will prove to you that they’re not as evil as you might think. They’re here to help, and they’re approachable. Just some of them after they’ve had their morning coffee.

I hope you enjoy it and let me know what questions you want to ask them. (If you don’t enjoy it, you will enjoy Pitch Perfect. It’s great. Have I told you that?)

Monday, October 8, 2012

Meet David Hetrick

We've had several new members join our staff this fall, so we're introducing them here on the blog. We've already met Olivia Hammill and Brandon Carter and today we introduce David Hetrick, our third admissions representative. He's an alum of both UNC and the Carolina College Advising Corps, and we're so glad to have him working in our office. 

Title: Admissions Representative
Hometown: Mount Airy, NC
Alma Mater: UNC-Chapel Hill
Time at Carolina: A little more than six years (four as a student, two as a Carolina College Advising Corps member, and three months in the Admissions Office)
Area of specialty in the office: Daily visit and recruitment travel

Why I love my job: Simply stated, I love telling people about Carolina.

Why I believe you should apply to Carolina: Carolina has a lot to offer ᅳ great academics, friendly people, and an abundance of opportunities.

When out on recruiting trips, I like to: Sample the local cuisine.

If I didn't work in admissions, I would be: Trying to find a job in admissions.
 If I were a fictional character, I would be: Aragorn from The Lord of the Rings
 Favorite ice cream flavor: Cookie dough with M&Ms
 Favorite song to sing when I’m in the car by myself: “Danny’s Song” by Loggins & Messina

Thursday, October 4, 2012

FAQs this Week

Early Action is right around the corner, so we're getting lots of questions from you all about your applications. Here are the most common questions we're getting this week--let us know in the comments below what else you are wondering about!

I submitted my application. When will I get confirmation that you’ve received it?
We recently began downloading submitted applications from both the Common Application and from CFNC, so we have started sending daily emails to students confirming receipt of their application and telling them how to track the status of their application online. After you submit your application, you will receive this email within two days. The email will be sent to the email address you indicated on your application. If it's been more than two days since you submitted your application and you haven't heard from us, first double-check your spam filter. If you don't find it there, you can email us at to request that we resend the email. (You might want to add to your safe-sender list, as that is the email address we'll use to send you information.)

What must be submitted by the October 15 deadline for Early Action? 
Only your application, your payment method, and your UNC-CH Supplement (if you're applying via the Common App) must be received by the deadline. All other materials, such as your letter of recommendation, test scores, transcript, and School Form, may arrive after the deadline. 

How late can I take the SAT/ACT?
We can consider scores for tests taken through November for Early Action, and through December for Regular Decision, so long as the scores are sent promptly. If you are planning to take the October or November tests, indicate on the test that you would like your scores to be sent to us (our SAT code is 5816 and our ACT code is 3162), so that the testing service will send us your scores as soon as they are available.

Can I submit an Arts Supplement to Carolina through the Common App? 
We don't accept the arts supplement though the Common App, but we do still want to hear about your artistic achievements! The best way to share this information is on the main part of your application. You can list it in the Extracurricular Activities section of the application, and you're welcome to include a URL of where your work can be found online. Please don't send DVDs or CDs, as we just can't review them. It's best to post your work online, or you could create a resume-style document that includes a brief description of your work and 1-2 samples--this can be sent directly to us at

**Update 10/31: this comment stream has gotten unwieldy, so I am closing it to comments. Please see our latest FAQ post.***