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UNC System

Education Higher Ed News Top Story

New members join UNC Board of Trustees, shifting demographics but likely not ideologies 

Six new members are set to join the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees, changing the board’s demographic makeup but likely not its conservative bent. The new trustees will have to contend with the fallout from the Nikole Hannah-Jones case, which has prompted an exodus of Black faculty and raised questions about the effectiveness of the university’s shared governance structure.

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Higher Ed News Top Story

Toll from political push at UNC continues to mount

In an exclusive interview, a distinguished Lumbee historian explains her decision to leave UNC-Chapel Hill When renowned historian Malinda Maynor Lowery heard acclaimed journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones couldn’t get a vote on tenure from the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees, she felt sad and angry. But she was no longer surprised.

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Higher Ed News Top Story

UNC hire of acclaimed journalist sparks conservative ire

Groups with close ties to two Board of Governors members issue blistering attacks on Nikole Hannah-Jones When UNC-Chapel Hill announced the hiring of Nikole Hannah-Jones last month, it was cause for celebration among students, faculty and administration at the school.

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Higher Ed News Top Story

UNC proposal would add funds for campus police, cut budgets for student groups

Student leaders at UNC System schools are opposing potential fee changes they say could cut funds for student groups and student government while expanding budgets for campus police. At the end of January, student leaders at UNC-Chapel Hill sent a letter to the Board of Governors and UNC System President Peter Hans to express concern over ongoing discussions of the Student Activity Fee.

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Higher Ed Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

PW special report: How did Darrell Allison cut in line to become the new chancellor at Fayetteville State? It’s a secret.

Allison's political connections and loyalty might have helped him get the job. Darrell Allison did not make the final cut in the search process for Fayetteville State University’s next chancellor, according to sources directly involved in the process. Instead, the former UNC Board of Governors member was added at the last-minute to the list of finalists submitted to the UNC System.

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Higher Ed News Top Story

Student leaders: Systemic racism remains a pervasive problem across the UNC system

Report, statistics document a significant diversity problem, but questions persist as to whether there is a genuine commitment to address it A report on racial equity in the UNC System exposes the depth of the diversity problem in leadership at most of the state’s universities. For many Black students, faculty and staff the problem is not news. But it is, they say, at the heart of many of the system’s problems.

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Higher Ed News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

New ‘Silent Sam’ revelations contradict past public assurances offered by UNC Chancellor Guskiewicz

In December 2019, Kevin Guskiewicz, then the new UNC-Chapel Hill chancellor, appeared before a concerned and angry Faculty Council. The UNC System had just announced its Board of Governors had settled a lawsuit with the NC Sons of Confederate Veterans. The settlement would not only give the group the controversial Silent Sam Confederate monument but also $2.5 million in trust to care for it. 

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Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

The year in review: Five “PW investigates” stories to remember

Looking back on the pandemic, some of its many disturbing impacts, and one community's controversial plan to revive its economy In a year upended and dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic, Policy Watch covered the crisis with daily stories and investigative pieces from the institutional to the personal.

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COVID-19 Higher Ed News Top Story

UNC students: Are you ready to return to campus? The administration says yes.

With UNC System schools looking ahead to the spring semester, tensions over COVID-19 planning and the question of returning more students to campus have have intensified between students, staff, faculty and administrators. While most of the system’s 17 universities kept students on campus for the fall semester, the largest schools — N.C. State University, UNC-Chapel Hill and East Carolina University — sent students home after just a week of classes.

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COVID-19 Higher Ed Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Faculty members revolt over UNC plans to triple number of students living on campus next semester

With clusters of campus COVID cases, the fall semester was a failure. In the spring, history could repeat itself. Faculty members and administrators in the UNC System are butting heads over pandemic planning for the spring semester, as some schools consider bringing more students back to campuses.

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Higher Ed News Top Story

Monday Numbers: UNC’s race and diversity problems

Last week the American Medical Association made international headlines by declaring racism an “urgent public health threat,”  warning that it perpetuates health inequities and calling for systematic change to combat it. “The AMA recognizes that racism negatively impacts and exacerbates health inequities among historically marginalized communities. Without systemic and structural-level change, health inequities will continue to exist, and the overall health of the nation will suffer,” said Dr. Willarda V. Edwards, an AMA board member, in a public statement.“Declaring racism as an urgent public health threat is a step in the right direction toward advancing equity in medicine and public health, while creating pathways for truth, healing, and reconciliation,” Edwards said.

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Higher Ed News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

In voting to change chancellor search policy, UNC Board of Governors could expand System president’s power

Trustees at Historically Black Colleges and Universities oppose the change over concerns that conservative white leadership is often at odds with HBCUs' mission UNC System President Peter Hans could further consolidate his power if the Board of Governors votes Thursday on a major and fundamental change to how chancellors are chosen for UNC system schools.

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COVID-19 Higher Ed Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

PW exclusive: UNC System exploring worst-case scenario budget cuts of up to 50%

The UNC System is preparing for possible budget cuts of up to 50% at its 17 campuses, according to an email obtained by Policy Watch this week. The email, from UNC Board of Governors Chairman Randy Ramsey to the system’s chancellors, cites the potential impacts of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the possibility that campuses may again close after reopening next month.

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COVID-19 Higher Ed News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Parents struggle with question of return to UNC campuses

Last semester, as the COVID-19 pandemic closed all UNC System campuses, Samantha Pilot welcomed her son home early from his freshman year at UNC-Chapel Hill. At the time, she felt like the university was on her side. It was expensive and complicated to close the campuses and shift to online-only education for the balance of the spring semester. The fact that the UNC System did it anyway made her feel proud to be part of a Carolina family.

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