Friday, June 28, 2013

Service at UNC - Student Spotlights: Elizabeth Bartholf and Osvelia Valverde

Are you passionate about giving back to your community? At Carolina, there are countless ways to make an impact through volunteer work and make great friends and memories while you’re doing it. Two girls, Elizabeth Bartholf and Osvelia Valverde, came to UNC from different backgrounds, but with a similar interest in service.  

Elizabeth, now a rising junior from Pittsboro, NC, transferred to UNC as a sophomore from UNC Charlotte (pictured right). She’s a Journalism and Spanish double major and is involved with countless organizations on campus including the Daily Tar Heel, Students United for Immigrant Equality (SUIE), and Tau Sigma National Honor Society. She's also very involved with volunteer work and teaches computer skills for Spanish-speakers at the Chapel Hill/Carrboro Human Rights center. She hopes to study abroad in Spain during her time at UNC to enhance her Spanish language skills and merge her passions for Journalism and Spanish.

Osvelia, who is also a rising junior, concentrates her studies in Psychology, Latina/o Studies and Education (pictured below). Her family is originally from Mexico, but she spent most of her childhood growing up just outside of Winston-Salem, NC. Like Elizabeth, she is extremely involved in the UNC community. Some of her extracurriculars include Carolina Latina/o Collaborative, Lambda Pi Chi Sorority, and Carolina Hispanic Association. Not to mention she’s a mentor for Scholars Latino Initiative and Carolina Covenant as well as a Career Peer for University Career Services.

These girls may have varied interests on campus and in the classroom, but two things in particular brought them together: their love of the Spanish language and the first floor of Craige North; a place they like to call “La Casa.” This place, of course, is the Spanish Living-Learning Community and it’s where Elizabeth and Osvelia first met. “La Casa” residents focus their learning on fluency, culture and community. In other words, they work together to strengthen their speaking skills and friendships through the continued learning of the Spanish culture. Each member is required to attend three Latina/o sponsored events and complete 10+ hours of community service. When asked to describe her experience with her LLC, Elizabeth told us:
“As a transfer student I was worried about starting over at a new school. But with ‘La Casa,’ I was able to meet new friends with similar interests and who are dedicated to making a difference in a community.”
To her, being super involved and making a difference is what has made her experience so far at UNC so rewarding and so much fun.

The Spanish Living-Learning Community (“La Casa”) 2012-2013

In the same community service vein, Elizabeth and Osvelia worked together on a project called “Radio Latijam” in their Latino Media Studies course. Radio Latijam is a Spanish-language program produced by and catered to Latino youth. It provides a means for Latina and Latino teens to play their music, voice their opinions, learn about topics that concern them and inform other teens. It offers valuable service-learning opportunities to both Latino youth and UNC students taking APPLES service-learning courses. Each UNC student is paired with a local high school student as a mentor and is able to use what they are learning in the classroom to help out the local community. 

Through Elizabeth and Osvelia’s involvement in the APPLES course and in their residence hall alone, they were able to create a community of friendship at Carolina while helping out the local community through service. If you’re interested in getting involved with community service, social justice or service learning when you get to UNC, you too can get involved and make lasting friendships! Check out the links below to find out how:

Friday, June 21, 2013

2014 Application Essay Prompts

After much discussion among the admissions committee, we've now selected the essay prompts for the 2013-2014 first-year application. We hope they will inspire you to write an essay that will help us understand who you are, how you think, and what you might contribute to the University community. Keep in mind that your essays will be evaluated not only for admission, but also for possible selection for Honors Carolina, merit-based scholarships, and Excel@Carolina.

You'll submit two essays, the first of which is from the main part of the Common Application. These prompts are common to all schools who accept the Common Application and you can view both the prompts and instructions here.

The second essay will be specific to the UNC application. You'll choose one prompt and respond in an essay of 400-500 words. Here are the questions:
  1. Most of us have one or more personality quirks. Explain one of yours and what it says about you. 
  2. What do you hope to find over the rainbow? 
  3. Why do you do what you do? 
  4. If you could travel anywhere in time or space, either real or imagined, where would you go and why? 
  5. Tell us about a time when your curiosity led you someplace you weren’t expecting to go.
We hope you'll have fun with these essays. We had fun writing the prompts, and we look forward to reading your responses!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Final Waitlist Update

I want to start by saying that we're really grateful for the students who have patiently remained on our waiting list in the hopes of being offered a space. However, we've now almost entirely finalized both the first-year and transfer classes, so yesterday afternoon we released final decisions for the majority of students on both waiting lists. In all, we offered admission to about 375 students from the first-year waiting list this year--about 100 North Carolina students and 275 out-of-state students. From the transfer waiting list, we were able to admit about 50 students.

Thank you again for applying for admission this year. We wish you the very best at your chosen school and we know you will do great things there.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Recreation at UNC - Student Spotlight: Raven Jones

Staying active can prove to be one of the hardest challenges in college. With hectic class and extracurricular schedules (not to mention sleep and social!), recreation might eventually fall to last place on the priority list. However, it is UNC Campus Recreation’s mission to provide “a diverse and intentional recreational program in a safe, inclusive, and accessible environment which enhances the social, mental, and physical well-being of the entire University community.”  

Rising senior Raven Jones has made recreation the center of her life at Carolina. Not only does she play on the UNC Women’s Club Basketball team, serve as president of Carolina Fitness Professionals Club and work at the Student Recreation Center (SRC), but has also dedicated her academic studies to Exercise and Sports Science (EXSS).

Her love of the game started at the young age of three and continued throughout high school on the varsity team. After spending her four high school years dedicated to competitive basketball, it seemed only natural for her to continue playing competitively at UNC. Thus far, her experience with the club team has been incredible: 

“Everything from my hilarious teammates both on the road and on the court to practicing hard during off season to winning together has really made my time on the team worthwhile.”

Her passion for sports doesn’t stop with club ball, either. She also loves her job working for Campus Recreation in the Facilities Department where she is responsible for supervising Fetzer and Woollen gyms. She enjoys getting to meet new people and seeing friends work out while still staying connected with the EXSS department, which is conveniently just a few steps down the hall. Her job serves both an academic and social purpose; she can stop by a professor’s office on her way out to ask a question or catch up with friends at the gym. For Raven, this recreational community triples as an academic, athletic and social place that houses all of her interests in one central location.

As an EXSS major, Raven sees her involvement with Campus Rec and her club sport as the perfect way to personally interact with others who are as deeply passionate about exercise and wellness as she is. After her four years at Carolina, she plans either to attend graduate school for Physical Therapy or work in community relations for a professional sports team.

Playing a club sport, being president of a health related club, working for Campus Recreation and majoring in EXSS has given Raven exposure to all sides of the sports world. Her Carolina experience not only steered her in the direction of her professional future, but also gave her the means to explore her passion and gain a deeper appreciation for it from all angles.

Do you love sports as much as Raven does? Explore Carolina’s recreational avenues and envision yourself on a similar path. Check out UNC’s athletic resources both for academics and for fun below!

UNC Campus Recreation -
Exercise and Sports Science program -

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Social Media Roundup: Connect with Us Online!

Did you know you can connect with the Admissions office on many social media channels? Here are some recent highlights:

Tar Heel Blogger Leah graduated last month and is now contemplating life after Carolina. Read more about how she's adjusting to life as an alumna over on Tar Heel Blog.
Like us on Facebook to get updates in your news feed. You can also ask to join our UNC Academics 4-1-1 group, where you can chat with current students about academics at Carolina.
Follow us on Twitter to get all the updates. Several of the admissions counselors in our office also tweet--Assistant Director Melissa Kotacka @makunc is among the most active!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Student Spotlight: Entrepreneur Ryan Cocca

Ever dreamed of running your own business someday? At UNC, entrepreneurship and innovative thinking is bred through countless organizations including Carolina Creates, Carolina Challenge and the recently established minor in Entrepreneurship. These avenues allow students to embrace their greatest passions and aspirations and prepare them for the possibility of bootstrapping after college -- or for some while they are still here. Ryan Cocca, a senior at UNC, has certainly established himself as one of those people.

Cocca, a born and bred Chapel Hill-ian, has dreamed of UNC his whole life. While his dreams of being a basketball star may have been a little far-fetched, his vision of owning his own business has taken off into a reality. In 2011, Ryan co-founded Thrill City as “an independent brand and online boutique based in Chapel Hill, NC, producing quality apparel and accessories with the mission of making a positive social impact.” So, what does that mean? Essentially, it’s a streetwear company that uses the influence of clothing and media to raise awareness about different types of art in Chapel Hill.

Thrill City started as a test. Ryan created a UNC basketball T-shirt design and posted it online. Almost instantly, the Twitter-sphere began to blow up over his design and even the basketball team was talking about it. Within a period of two weeks, he’d sold over 150 shirts and Thrill City was officially in business. Since its inception, Ryan has hosted countless events to promote the brand as his designs continue to evolve and has gotten support from celebrities like Asher Roth and former UNC basketball stars like Deon Thompson, John Henson, Danny Green and Ty Lawson. In the near future, his main goals are collaborating with local artists for the T-shirt designs and establishing a clearer, more focused social media and blog presence. He hopes to spread the Thrill City motto of “Don't Sleep” and focus on further establishing its presence and importance in Chapel Hill and the Triangle.

Think you’ve got the spark to create something of your own? Like Ryan, you too can flourish and accomplish your hopes and dreams at Carolina. Check out the immense opportunities for entrepreneurship and innovation at UNC below.

Minor in Entrepreneurship -
Carolina Challenge -
Entrepreneurship at Kenan-Flagler - 

To learn more about Thrill City, follow @thrillcitync on Twitter and check out these feature articles:


Ryan is a photojournalism major and an Entrepreneurship minor at UNC.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Waitlist Update

Yesterday afternoon, we admitted a small group of students from the first-year and transfer waiting lists. If you're receiving a new decision, you'll get an email telling you to check your MyCarolina for an update. We are getting near to finalizing the class, and this latest wave of offers is quite small. We are working to resolve the waiting list as quickly as we can so that all students can have a final decision. (As promised, all students will have a decision by June 30 at the latest.) For those of you who are still awaiting a decision, thank you for hanging in there with us. We're truly grateful for your continued interest and we hope to have a final decision for you soon! Please let me know if you have any questions.