Ditto northeastmom - I'd really like to hear from any UNC Asheville students. I found a thread somewhere from a student who had transferred to UNC Chapel Hill from Asheville but there's very little on this site from present students. I believe that he was studying International Studies. He didn't have any criticism of Asheville just that it didn't have all the classes he needed. I wonder why it's so quiet here and yet there are lots of students writing at other places? Most threads here are from parents and no students and at other schools, it mostly students and no parents...........I think it's probably because it's a below the radar school but it's a shame because you learn so much from the postings at other places.
Also, I'm getting withdrawal from no more research, visiting, cogitating etc. I was sadly addicted to all that and now I need to get a life! Gulp!
So far only 8 views here. I really wish someone would notice my post, Jane. All we can do is keep trying. I'd like to learn more about this school, but what concerns me the most is the low graduation rate. I really want to know everything behind that low graduation rate, and with good professors and small classses why it is so low. I'd like to learn more about the student body.
I know - it's hard to get a "feel" for the school isn't it? I understand your fears about the low graduation rate although I think it's partly explained by the facts that have been listed here previously such as - finances, part-time students, etc. I've no reason to think that my daughter can't graduate in 4 years but presumably things will become clearer once she gets there.......
I'd just like to hear some student voices....what is it that they like/dislike about the place.....also interested in the core curriculum thing (although it's not called that) and what are the best/worst departments etc.
A lot of other public Us have students with financial problems, but have higher grad rates. Is it a laid back attitude that one can just take a class or two, work 20 hours per week and share an apt. and live like that for 5-10 years? I want to know if that is the attitude of a 1/4 or so of the student body. It does worry me about this school.
Are you talking about a low percentage of students who actually graduate in four years? Or five years?
Can you be a little more specific about where you came up with the info about the low graduation rate? Are you relying on the "Common Data Set" information?
Also, without trying to sound obvious, maybe you could just call the school admissions office and ask them some questions. It's a little school and when I call them, often somebody will actually pick up the phone and chat with me about stuff.
bankroll, I am talking about the 4 and 5 year graduation rates and I looked them up last in an older college guide book (so not last year's figures). I did call the school and asked questions. They said that their graduation rate has been of concern to "them" as well and the reason for it is: 1. students transferring out who are involved in those 3/2 year programs 2. A lot of students opting to just go part time. They did not elaborate on why so many were going to UNC-A part time. The person I spoke with was very nice and more than willing to answer questions.
Glad you were able to speak with someone at UNC/A. I guess expressing concern about this is something, but I think I would have rather been made aware of steps being taken to address the issue.
While I am aware of the negative impact on the educational environment that this can cause, I guess it's not been as much a concern of mine as I've been the "ogre" and just told all my children that they're on the four-year program, i.e., I expect them to graduate with a Bachelor's degree in 4 consecutive years. No exceptions.
I've done the same as Bankroll - my daughter knows that she needs to graduate in 4 years and that she needs to make that happen. If it's not going to happen at Asheville for whatever reason, then she'll have to transfer. Financially she has no reason/excuse for not achieving that.
But I agree that if she's surrounded by other kids who are not on the 4 year track, that can be detrimental. I think, Bankroll, that you and I will just have to take stock at the end of their first year and hopefully all will be well.
If you're still interested, I'm a senior at UNCA and would be happy to answer any questions you have to the best of my ability.
I would also say that most part-time students I currently know at UNCA are part-time because they are also working full-time. I think there is a far greater danger here of a student taking 9 semesters to graduate than not graduating at all.
In regard to your concern about a student taking one or two classes a semester, working 20 hours, and doing that for the next decade or so, I have met a student or two along those lines, but it's certainly not a widespread attitude. For a full-time student who lives in the dorms, you are surrounded by other full-time students who are aiming to graduate in 4 years.
My strongest opinion on this is whatever a student puts in, he or she will get out. The professors here are amazing, and there are so many opportunities. Classes are small, and undergraduate students are always the main focus. Academically, there are tons of projects and undergraduate research to get involved in. I began to get really involved in academics my second semester and was able to present undergraduate research at an out-of-state conference halfway through my sophomore year. There is an Honors program, whose director is awesome, and there are many honor societies. There are also countless interest groups and clubs, including environmental groups, intramural sports, religious groups, political groups, Quiz Bowl, Greek life, academic groups, and student government. Students can do two internships through the school (I believe one for credit toward their majors) or study abroad.
As for a laid-back attitude, no one can deny that Asheville is a bit of a "hippie" city, but I don't think that translates into laxness. In fact, it's more about artistic, environmental, and political involvement. It also definitely does not translate into lax academics. As a liberal arts school, our core requirements are both broad and in-depth, covering all areas of study, and our attendance policies are much more rigorous than many schools' - which, as a student, I can't help but wince at! We get 2 absences per semester for a class if it meets twice a week, and 3 if it meets three times a week. In any case, as long as your student is dedicated, he or she will have many, many opportunities here. It's going to be up to him take them - as it would be anywhere - but if he goes for it, he'll have all the support he can ask for along the way.
Last edited by Oak; 07-29-2009 at 01:49 AM.
Oak, thank you for posting! Your posts were very informative.
As far as absenences, if you end up with a more serious illness like the flu/pneumonia, etc., with a doctor's note can you miss more than 2 or 3 classes over the semester, or what happens?
I read about your explanation of the low grad rate. It is great that students get involved, but I would think that many parents would like them to graduate in 4 years. Do you think that the extra curriculars are more of a distraction at UNC-A than at other schools with higher grad rates?
How is the food? Can you walk to campus from most off campus housing? Would most students from OOS feel comfortable at UNC-A?
Thanks for your help! BTW, we did visit, and the campus and surrounding area is really nice!