University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Announces Free Tuition for Qualifying In-State Families

UNC-Chapel Hill will provide free tuition for in-state students from families making under $80,000 annually and will begin with the incoming fall 2024 class.
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Updated on November 30, 2023
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  • Late last month, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down affirmative action in college admissions based on a case involving the University of North Carolina.
  • UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz said the university will respect the U.S. Supreme Court's affirmative action decision but will keep its commitment to access and affordability.
  • In addition to free tuition for qualifying students, UNC-Chapel Hill hired additional outreach officers who will work with students in underserved communities.
  • Last month, Duke University announced free tuition for students from the Carolinas whose families make $150,000 or less.

North Carolina students whose families meet income requirements can attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-Chapel Hill) tuition-free. The announcement comes after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down affirmative action in college admissions.

Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz wrote on July 7 that UNC-Chapel Hill will provide free tuition and fees for incoming undergraduates from families who make less than $80,000 annually. This will start with the incoming fall 2024 undergraduate class.

"We want to make sure students know financial constraints should not stand in the way of their dreams," Guskiewicz wrote. "We will be sharing details about this exciting new opportunity within the next few weeks."

UNC-Chapel Hill's move comes less than a week after SCOTUS ended affirmative action in college admissions and less than one month after Duke University announced free tuition for students from North and South Carolina whose families make $150,000 or less.

Guskiewicz also announced UNC-Chapel Hill has hired additional outreach officers to the admissions team to serve in underresourced communities across the state to recruit and spread awareness about the university's commitment to affordability.

The SCOTUS decision will force "fundamental change" in its admissions process, he said, but UNC-Chapel Hill will continue to expand opportunities for the state's students.

"We are and will remain passionately public, and we will ensure that every student who earns admission to Carolina can come here and thrive," he wrote. "Our University's commitment to access and affordability and supporting a culture of belonging for everyone does not change with last week's ruling."

Guskiewicz said the tuition-free announcement adds to other programs for students, including the Carolina Covenant program for low-income students and the Blue Sky Scholars program for middle-income students.

"As chancellor, a member of the faculty for 28 years and a parent of two recent graduates, I know our community creates strength from all our differences. We can't lose different perspectives and experiences in the classroom that give depth to our discussions and make our work impactful."