Meet alumna Chelsea Barnes, graduate of the Class of 2015 and current J.D. candidate in the UNC School of Law.
As a current law student and former undergraduate, I am what we affectionately call a “Double Tar Heel.”
I find a sense of pride in saying this now, but if you had asked me if I would be here five years ago there is a strong possibility I would have told you, “I don’t know.”
I am a citizen of the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina and grew up in a small town about 30 minutes outside of my tribal community. Though I excelled in high school, I still had those pre-application jitters that many of you may be all too familiar with. As I look back on my senior year of high school, I remember being nervous about whether or not I would get into Carolina and if I did, what it would be like when I got there. Very few people where I was from went to college and of those that did, few went to schools like Carolina. In some ways, it felt out of reach.
When I got my acceptance letter, I was ecstatic. I entered my first year at Carolina hopeful about what the future would bring. Once I got there, however, I soon realized that I would need to find a support system. I floundered (to say the least) during my first semester and questioned whether or not I really belonged. My initial support system was Alpha Pi Omega, a Native American interest sorority. During my first months at Carolina, the women within the sorority reached out to me and ensured me that I was welcome and supported. When I later joined the sorority during my sophomore year, I learned that its very purpose was to serve as a support for college women in today’s society.
Though I had grown up outside of my tribal community, I was beginning to find my home at Carolina. Becoming a sister of the sorority led me to other opportunities, including becoming more involved with the Carolina Indian Circle (CIC), UNC’s undergraduate Native student group. I had the pleasure of serving as the president of CIC for two years. In the process, I learned so much about myself, my culture, and how to be a leader.
My involvement in these organizations led me to a myriad of other opportunities during my time as an undergraduate. I had the opportunity to work as an intern for Congressman Tom Cole through the Udall Foundation and was an honorable mention for the Udall Scholarship. I had the opportunity to serve on committees and work with university officials to plan events. I got to know other leaders of student organizations and work with them in efforts to make Carolina a place that would seek to embrace diversity wholeheartedly. Though I worked hard to earn these opportunities, I wouldn’t have gotten there without the support system I established within the Native community at Carolina.
Despite my initial academic struggles and issues I faced during my first year at Carolina, my support system within the Native community enabled me to excel both personally and academically. The network I created provided me with the support I needed to apply to law school and the confidence to do so. In some ways, not much has changed. I am currently serving as the president of the Native American Law Students’ Association and working with other members of our organization to think of ways we can increase enrollment of Native students at the law school.
As I think back to my experience as an undergraduate, I am humbled by the opportunities I was given. As a Native American female from a small town in eastern North Carolina, there are many (including myself) who wouldn’t have predicted that I would be where I am today. All of this goes to show that with lots of hard work, finding your support system, and a little bit of fate, things happen exactly as they are supposed to. My name is Chelsea Barnes, and I am a (double) Tar Heel.
UNC is undeniably a community centered around the value of public service. As a public university, our students, staff and faculty all work to improve the lives of others, whether in their academic fields or simply offer their time to volunteer outside of the classroom. Many of these efforts go without thanks or are done with anonymity.
But at the annual Veteran’s Day ceremony at UNC, ROTC cadets, veterans, faculty and students joined to thank past, current and future veterans for their honorable service.
Dr. Bruce Cairns, chair of the faculty and a distinguished surgery professor, is a veteran of the U.S. navy and spoke at the memorial service.
Sharing the words of Frank Porter Graham, former UNC president and North Carolina senator, Dr. Cairns reminded us that the Chapel Hill campus was based on and continues to be a university for serving others above all else.
While first spoken in 1931 but remaining true today, Graham said, “In Chapel Hill among a friendly folk, this old university, the first state university to open its doors, stands on a hill set in the midst of beautiful forests under the skies that give their color and their charm to the life of youth gathered here… there is music in the air of the place.”
This November we’re delighted to celebrate American Indian Heritage Month, along with the student groups, faculty and staff who support the Native American community on the Carolina campus.
The special events throughout the month range from a Culture Night & Fashion Show to discussions on indigenous foodways. You’re welcome to attend any event that interests you. Be sure to check dates and locations on the American Indian Center calendar.
If you’re interested in studying American Indian issues on an academic level, you’ve come to the right place. Carolina is one of only two schools that offer American Indian and Indigenous People’s Studies as a major.
Even as a non-major you’re welcome to explore these issues in courses, including through First-Year Seminars. Those are the classes that are only open to first-years and take on unique themes in any department, and they’re a great opportunity to knock out some general education requirements with a fun and interesting topic that you might not be able to take a class in otherwise. They change each semester, but this past fall there were seminars on American Indians in History, Law and Literature and on American Indian Art in the 20th Century.
There are also plenty of ways you can get involved with the American Indian community year-round, especially thanks to events through the American Indian Center, Alpha Pi Omega, the nation’s first Native American interest sorority, and the Carolina Indian Circle student group.
No matter your background, we hope that you feel at home at Carolina. Being a student here means being a part of an all-inclusive family, and we’re excited to see how the next class of incoming students will not only feel welcome but also add all of your unique perspectives and ideas to our UNC community.
This past week at UNC was our Fall Break, otherwise known as the glorious time to catch up on sleep and rest after a hectic couple weeks of midterm exams. Starting last Wednesday at 5pm, Chapel Hill began to get a lot quieter as people made their trek back to their hometowns.
While most students use this as a time to cuddle with their adorable dogs and catch up with old friends, we can also take advantage of other opportunities available around the school for travel and maximizing their educational experience.
This week, I did exactly that on an all-expenses-paid trip to New York City for four days. It’s included as a part of one of the classes I’m taking in the School of Media and Journalism.
The class is called Workroom FashionMash and is taught by Dana McMahan, where we experiment with practicing an experiential marketing event around the fashion and lifestyle industry. Since so much of the fashion industry is located in New York, we decided to take a trip up for some inspiration.
I had a complete blast going around the city and meeting professionals working in all different kinds of industries, from branding designer clothing at Rachel Roy to agency communication at Spring Studios. We also had our fill of Museums, going by the Whitney and Metropolitan Museum of Art. Between everything we did, I gained a lot of great ideas about how to present an experience to someone in an engaging and interesting way.
But don’t worry, the trip didn’t focus solely around professional tasks. We also got in plenty of touristy attractions, Instagram-ready meals and fun nights out on the town. We spent a gorgeous Sunday afternoon in Central Park, saw a comedy show and had some time to window-shop around 5th Avenue at stores way out of our price range.
The entire trip was a blast, and it’s not the only travel opportunity available to students. The MJ School also takes up a group of students to network with influential Alumni in NYC hoping to make connections for jobs and summer internships. And there are plenty of other travel opportunities available through the university for a more memorable fall break.
UNC has boundless opportunities for something like this, and I can’t speak more highly about the impact it has had on my college experience. Be sure to be on the lookout for opportunities like this once you get here — you won’t regret taking them.
To those of you who have applied to Carolina for the first-year Early Action deadline, we thank you*. We look forward to getting to know you through your application.
Now that you’ve completed your application (hooray!), you may be wondering what’s next. We’ve put together a short list of tips of what you can do in the next few weeks.
- Look out for an email with your Connect Carolina Student Center guest ID. An email will be sent 5-7 days after you submit your application to the email address you provided to us in your application. After you set up your Connect Carolina Student Center account, you’ll be able to check on the status of your application and view any items on your application to-do list.
- Allow for 2-3 weeks for your Student Center to-do list to be updated. We will accept supplemental materials such as the teacher letter of recommendation, secondary school statement, and official transcripts through November 1. Because it takes some time on our end to process this information in our system, it may take up to 2-3 weeks for the items to appear complete on your online to-do list.
- Check your email regularly. Once all of your supplemental materials have been received and have been processed in our system, you will receive an email confirming that your application is complete. Any updates regarding the status of your application will continue to be sent to the email you provided to us in your application for admission.
- Apply for financial aid. You can apply for aid before you receive an admission decision. March 1 is the priority deadline, but if you applied Early Action, we encourage you to go ahead and apply for aid by winter break to receive fullest consideration for need-based scholarships. To apply for financial aid at Carolina, you’ll need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the CSS/Financial Aid Profile.
If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at (919) 966-3621 or at email@example.com. And remember to pat yourself on the back for getting your application in!
*In light of several areas being impacted by Hurricane Matthew, the First-Year Early Action application will remain open until October 23 on the Common Application. If you were unable to submit your application by October 15, you have until 11:59 pm on October 23 to submit your application for consideration for the Early Action deadline.
On Tuesday, we celebrated the 223rd birthday of the University. This special event featured a number of inspiring speakers, including our own Stephen Farmer, Vice Provost for Enrollment and Undergraduate Admissions. In his speech, The Miles We Travel, he spoke about the history of the University, the courage of the students who broke barriers through the years to come here, and the ideals that make Carolina worth fighting for today.
As you continue to search for a college that might be the kind of place you could see yourself fighting for, we encourage you to hear these words for yourself.
Over the past several days, we’ve received several questions about the upcoming first-year Early Action deadline as well as the extension we’ve offered to students impacted by Hurricane Matthew. To provide you with additional information, we’ve put together the following FAQs.
Please note that while the Common Application states that the first-year Early Action deadline is October 23, we are asking students who were not impacted by the hurricane to proceed with submitting their application by the original deadline of October 15.
If you have a situation that we haven’t covered in the below FAQs, please do not hesitate to contact us either at (919) 966-3621 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your interest in Carolina. We look forward to getting to know you through your application!
Q: Why did you extend the deadline for students impacted by the storm?
A: We made the decision to extend the deadline for students in affected areas, understanding that many of them will need to focus on helping their families and community recover from the storm.
Q: If I was not affected by Hurricane Matthew, can I still submit my application on October 23 and be considered for Early Action?
A: The deadline extension is intended for students impacted by the hurricane who may need additional time to complete their application. We ask that all other students submit their application by the original deadline of October 15.
Q: I live in an area that was affected by the hurricane, but I wasn’t greatly impacted. Should I submit my application during the original deadline of October 15?
A: If you are in a position to do so, please submit your application during the original October 15 deadline. We know that each student’s situation with regard to the hurricane will vary, and we wanted to be mindful of students who are in need of the additional time as a result.
Q: To be considered for the Early Action deadline, do my test scores, high school transcript, and letter of recommendation need to be submitted by the deadline?
A: Whether you are submitting your application by the original deadline of October 15 or the extended deadline of October 23, you will need to submit both your application and application fee or fee waiver in the Common Application by 11:59 pm on the day of the deadline.
We will accept supplemental materials such as transcripts, the letter of recommendation, and secondary school statement until November 1 for students who wish to be considered for the Early Action deadline. Additionally, we will accept test scores from October and November testing dates. Please have the testing service send your test scores directly to our office. Additionally, please have your official transcript and letter of recommendation sent directly to us from your school.
Craven Community College English instructor and C-STEP advisor, Jessica Saxon (center) is pictured with students Myra Parker (left) and Jeremy Zollars (right) who enrolled in the UNC-Chapel Hill transfer program along with several other CCC students.
Since 2011, Craven Community College (CCC) and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) have partnered together to provide CCC students a transfer opportunity through the Carolina Student Transfer Excellence (C-STEP) program. C-STEP is designed for high-achieving, low- and moderate-income high school and community college students.
“Prior to joining C-STEP, many of the students felt that going to Chapel Hill was beyond their reach financially and academically,” said Jessica Saxon, CCC English instructor and C-STEP advisor.
C-STEP students are guaranteed admission to UNC-CH if they successfully complete the program and obtain an associate in arts or science degree. C-STEP is not a scholarship program. However, there is no cost and students save on tuition by attending community college for the first two years. Once C-STEP students transfer, UNC-CH works to meet students’ demonstrated financial need through grants, scholarships, and loans.
C-STEP students who have transferred typically perform better academically and graduate at a higher rate than other UNC-CH undergraduate students. “The C-STEP program provides a support system that prepares students, so Craven students know Chapel Hill before they go,” said Saxon.
During the program, students participate in campus tours and meet with advisors at UNC-CH. Students are also guided through UNC-CH’s admission process. In addition to the college support system, a peer support system develops during the two-year program.
CCC student Jeremy Zollars is a U.S. Navy veteran who served at U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) Base Camp LeJeune and USMC Air Station Cherry Point. Zollars said he realized his earning and other opportunities would be limited without a college degree, so he began attending CCC in January 2014. In addition to motivating him to do well academically, Zollars said networking through C-STEP has been a source of peer support. He plans on entering UNC-CH’s religious studies program in fall 2016.
“C-STEP has been very beneficial for me. Ms. Saxon and the Chapel Hill advisors and alumni have been great,” said Myra Parker. She joined CCC in fall 2014 and the C-STEP in spring 2015. In addition to C-STEP, Parker was a member of ENCORE!, the college’s singing student ambassadors, and Phi Theta Kappa honor society. She plans to study music at UNC-CH in fall 2016.
The income requirements for the C-STEP application are at or below 300 percent of 2012 Federal poverty guidelines. For example, a student would need a household adjusted gross income of $69,150 or less for a family of four.
Current CCC students who would like to enter UNC-CH in fall 2017 must apply by October 1, 2015. High school students graduating in spring 2016, or high school seniors with less than 30 hours of dual-enrollment credit, or CCC students with less than 30 hours of earned college credit must apply by April 1, 2016.
For more information about C-STEP, call Saxon at 252-672-7504, or visit the college’s website at CSTEP.
Deborah Kania is the director of marketing, communications and development liaison at Craven Community College.
Article originally appeared in the New Bern Sun Journal. From the Craven Community College website.
Planning a visit to Carolina? In addition to our regular undergraduate admissions information session and campus tour, you may also want to consider joining an academic department tour. Select departments such as UNC’s Kenan-Flagler Business School and the Eshelman School of Pharmacy offer prospective student events throughout the year.
To learn more, please visit admissions.unc.edu/visit/touring carolina.
We hope that you, your family and friends are safe following the devastating effects of Hurricane Matthew. We understand that helping your family and community recover from the storm may be your top priority over the next few days, and we have extended our Early Action application deadline to Sunday, October 23 for applicants impacted by the hurricane. We will continue to accept supplemental materials, including recommendation letters and transcripts, through November 1.
If you are a student who has been impacted by the hurricane and wish to take advantage of this deadline extension, please note that there is no need to contact us. Simply submit your application by 11:59 p.m. on October 23 and you will receive full consideration as an Early-Action applicant.
We wish you all the best as you continue your college search. Please do not hesitate to let us know if we may be of any assistance to you. You may contact us at (919) 966-3621 or at email@example.com.
Additionally, we’ve recently posted some FAQs about the Early Action deadline that you may find helpful. To view these FAQs, please click on the following link: FAQs about the Early Action Deadline.