CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- The University of North Carolina will be covering all tuition and fees for undergraduates who meet certain financial requirements starting with the incoming Class of 2028.
Starting in fall 2024, first-year students from North Carolina whose families make less than $80,000 per year will qualify for free tuition.
"We want to make sure students know financial constraints should not stand in the way of their dreams," Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz said in a statement Friday.
More details about the new free tuition program at UNC is set to be released in the coming weeks.
The tuition announcement came as part of a message from the chancellor about the Supreme Court ruling against UNC in a college admissions lawsuit. UNC was one of two schools defending race-based affirmative action at the Supreme Court before it was struck down late last week.
The chancellor said race will no longer be a factor in admissions decisions. However, the university will still consider an applicant's lived racial experience in situations where it "may illuminate an individual's character."
UNC has also hired additional staffers on the admissions team. Those new hires are going to work to reach out to under-resourced communities in order to "recruit students from across the state" and inform them that an education at UNC is something they could achieve.
"In our 230-year history, our University has faced many changes. We have seen them as challenges but also opportunities to learn and grow, improving our capacity to serve the people of our state. 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. In the months and years to come, we will continue to strive to build upon our vibrant community," the chancellor said in closing his letter Friday.