Oct. 12, 1793, marked the birth of public higher education in America on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The laying of Old East’s cornerstone on that date proclaimed to the nation that we refused to follow the path of cloistered elitism, sequestered in the ivory tower. Rather, with one bold stroke, Carolina led a young country to a future filled with highly educated citizens of all creeds and backgrounds, giving generations access to America’s promise of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Now, we aim to further that tradition by laying a new cornerstone for a new Carolina: the Cornerstone Fund.
Meeting Critical Needs
The Cornerstone Fund comes at a critical time for many deserving students who want to attend Carolina. For some, in the wake of climbing tuition costs, the crucial factor in choosing Carolina might be our ability to meet 100 percent of their demonstrated financial need. For other students, the key might be our ability to provide four-year merit-based awards that will relieve their families of at least some of the sacrifice they would otherwise have to make to enroll here. This is particularly true for students caught in the “middle-class squeeze,” ineligible for aid based on federal guidelines but facing a widening affordability gap wrought by escalating college costs and stagnant family incomes. For others, a merit award might tip the scales in our favor as they consider offers from competitors, enabling these students to choose their dream school rather than settle for less. For still others, the crucial factor might be our ability to provide one-time awards to support life-changing summer experiences—for example, in research or study abroad.
The Cornerstone Fund meets all of these needs. And, like for our students, it could not have come at a better time for us. As we balance serious cuts in state and federal financial aid with the increasingly competitive student recruiting market, our Office of Scholarships and Student Aid must be able to meet a diverse range of financial needs among our students, responding quickly and creatively when the student aid landscape shifts or when student needs change over time.
To discuss establishing a named fund please contact the Office of Development for Scholarships and Student Aid at SupportScholarships@unc.eduOpens in new window or 919-445-0933.