For the more than 6,000 students sitting in a sea of Carolina blue in Kenan Stadium on May 13, the journey to graduation was anything but easy.
There were demanding classes, all-nighters and countless assignments to overcome on the way, but those challenges led to a degree from UNC.
Marine veteran and social entrepreneur Rye Barcott ’01 urged them in this year’s spring Commencement address to continue taking their challenges and turning them into something useful and positive. “Our beloved University helped open your eyes to the world,” Barcott said. “Keep this perspective. Nurture it. It can help you better take the pain and create something useful — possibly even something transcendent — out of it.”
“Your future is brighter because of your degrees, and I know that you’re not going to forget how much you’ve been given,” Folt said. “Carolina seems to bring out the call to serve and a feeling of immense gratitude in all of us.“You aren’t leaving this place — you are actually carrying the best of it with you. Your families, your friends, your coaches, your professors believe in you. We can’t wait to see what you will achieve. Go out and solve the biggest mysteries.”
The degrees of 6,119 Carolina students were conferred during the 90-minute ceremony. They included 3,886 with bachelor’s degrees, 1,596 with master’s, 262 with doctoral and 637 with professional degrees from the schools of dentistry, law, medicine, nursing and pharmacy.