History of UNC Asheville
The University of North Carolina at Asheville is the designated liberal arts university in The University of North Carolina system. An outstanding learning community, UNC Asheville focuses its resources on academic excellence and community partnerships.
UNC Asheville opened in 1927 as Buncombe County Junior College for area residents interested in pursuing higher education. The school underwent several name changes, mergers with local governments and school systems, and moves before relocating in 1961 to its present campus in north Asheville. Asheville-Biltmore College joined The University of North Carolina system in 1969 as the University of North Carolina at Asheville, with the distinct mission to offer an excellent undergraduate liberal arts education. Today, UNC Asheville is the only designated undergraduate liberal arts university in the 17-campus UNC system.
UNC Asheville enrolls approximately 3,800 students pursuing bachelor’s degrees in more than 30 majors in the natural and social sciences, humanities, pre-professional and professional areas, as well as the Master of Liberal Arts and Sciences. With an average class size of 20, UNC Asheville emphasizes a personal approach to undergraduate education characterized by close faculty-student interactions, challenging academic programs and opportunities for learning outside the classroom. The university has received national recognition for its Humanities and Undergraduate Research programs.
UNC Asheville is consistently recognized for academic excellence, student access to faculty, quality of life both on campus and in town, and has been named an educational value and best buy by Forbes magazine, the Fiske Guide to Colleges and The Princeton Review. U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Colleges 2017” ranks UNC Asheville eighth in the nation among Public Liberal Arts Colleges, and it was included in The Princeton Review’s 2016 list of the “Best Schools for Making an Impact.” Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Magazine calls UNC Asheville one of the nation’s best values in public colleges, with one of the lowest total cost of attending for in-state students, and one of the lowest average debt among graduates.
The more than 300-acre UNC Asheville campus is convenient to the museums, galleries, restaurants and shopping and points of interest in the thriving downtown area, as well as the outdoor opportunities in the surrounding Pisgah National Forest, Blue Ridge Parkway and Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The campus comprises classroom, administration, residence and recreation facilities, and is home to the Asheville Graduate Center, which offers master’s and doctoral degree programs of other UNC institutions for people of the region, and the Reuter Center, home of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.
The University of North Carolina at Asheville is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award baccalaureate degrees and the Masters of Liberal Arts and Sciences degree. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of the University of North Carolina at Asheville.
The purpose for publishing the Commission on Colleges’ address and contact numbers is to enable interested constituents (1) to learn about the accreditation status of the University of North Carolina at Asheville and (2) to file a complaint for alleged non-compliance with a standard or requirement.
Please note that normal inquiries about the University of North Carolina at Asheville, such as admissions requirements, financial aid, educational programs, and the like should be addressed directly to the University and not to the Commission on Colleges’ office.
For information specific to the University of North Carolina at Asheville, please contact the Chancellor of UNC Asheville, 253 Phillips Hall, CPO 1400, One University Heights, Asheville, NC 28804, 828-251-6500.