The liberal arts and sciences are more essential than ever

Karen Gil (photo by Jackie Fritsch)

Karen Gil (photo by Jackie Fritsch)

As the largest unit on campus, the College of Arts and Sciences has always been at the academic center of  “the Carolina experience.”  Now our teaching, research and engagement are more essential than ever, as we prepare our students for success in the 21st century.

Our academic mission is:

  • to create new knowledge and discover innovative solutions to the world’s greatest challenges,
  • to educate outstanding undergraduate and graduate students and help them gain the knowledge, skills and experience needed for leadership in a fast-changing, global society, and
  • to contribute meaningfully to North Carolina, the nation and the world.

We are committed to giving Carolina students a first-rate educational experience with all of the benefits of a leading research university, with opportunities to work closely with outstanding scholars and teachers.

The College has more than 16,000 undergraduates and our faculty teach nearly 90 percent of all undergraduate credit hours here. We also have more than 2,700 graduate students, about 26 percent of all graduate and professional students on campus.

All undergraduates spend their first two years in the College, selecting courses across the disciplines.  They learn about the fine arts and humanities, the social sciences and the natural and mathematical sciences. Students are expected to be globally aware and to hone their skills in oral and written communication, critical analysis, language, and ethical decision-making. They gain practical experience through special seminars, research projects,  entrepreneurship and study abroad.  More than 75% of Carolina undergraduates choose their majors from about 40 different academic departments and curricula in the College.

This is what makes the College a vibrant intellectual community. Through scholarship and creative work, our extraordinary faculty shed light on the past, communicate new ideas and interpret the world. They also take on some of the biggest challenges of our time:  social and economic disparities, drug addiction, climate change, international conflict, life threatening diseases and more.

My goal as dean is to work with our colleagues, students, alumni and friends to ensure that the College of Arts and Sciences thrives as Carolina’s vital hub of learning, discovery and innovation.

Karen Gil, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences

College Administration: The Dean’s Team