As the 2016-2017 school year ends, we look back at some of the biggest news stories at UNC: President Barack Obama came to campus to campaign for Hillary Clinton, but Donald Trump’s eventual victory shocked many students. When a former UNC student was tried for murder after a fatal car wreck, it cast a spotlight on “blunt riding” — driving while smoking marijuana. The repeal of the state’s controversial “bathroom law” brought NCAA championship events back to North Carolina, but local LGBT advocates were disappointed with the compromise. UNC celebrates the men’s basketball team’s national title. An unusual convention in Greensboro brought together wannabe mermaids.
Students look for alternatives to high textbook prices. The end of classes means the beginning for a drinking binge for some students, and UNC leaders are concerned about it. Students with ties to Syria worry about their loved ones in their homeland. The job market for the Class of 2017 remains stable and relatively strong. The newest member of the UNC baseball team is a golden retriever, but he’s more than just a mascot.
UNC opens a $3 million substance abuse center for women. A proposed law to crack down on campus protests stalls in the state legislature. UNC hopes to take the lead in LEED energy-efficient building. A simulator shows students the dangers of distracted driving. A group of students has a unique new business – coming to your home to clean to your shoes. After more than hundred years, UNC’s Order of the Gorgon’s Head lodge remains a secretive society.
Legislators consider raising the state’s smoking and vaping age. The Tar Heels’ basketball national championship has been an economic boon for many local businesses, but the UNC athletic department receives little immediate benefit. “Safe spaces” are becoming more common on campus, but are controversial. UNC will spend $90 million on new sports facilities. UNC is well-represented at Wilmington’s annual Azalea Festival, a celebration revolving around old southern traditions.
After celebrating UNC’s men’s basketball championship, students wearily return to class. Student-athletes react to news that the NCAA has ended its boycott of North Carolina after HB2’s repeal. Morehead Planetarium prepares for a $5 million renovation. Fox News anchor Chris Wallace discusses journalism in the Trump era. “Arts Everywhere” brings music, sculpture, and a “trash monster” to campus.
The legislature has partially repealed HB2, but many people around campus are disappointed with the compromise. UNC prepares for the Final Four, and some students are taking long road trips to Phoenix. A legislative proposal will make it easier to carry a concealed weapon on campus. Food trucks make a rare appearance in downtown Chapel Hill. Rapper 2-Chainz comes to UNC, but will have to compete with basketball for students’ attention.
Some local churches consider becoming sanctuaries for undocumented immigrants. There’s another delay in the NCAA’s investigation of UNC’s academic-athletic scandal. A new study finds transgender students suffer more bad consequences from alcohol use. UNC’s dance marathon raises millions for UNC Children’s Hospital.
UNC’s medical school has stopped using live animals to train doctors. Gov. Cooper and legislators consider incentives for college students to become teachers. Adderall is used by many students to help them study, but its effects can be devastating. An on-campus variety show provides a comedic outlet for students.
The UNC Board of Governors tries to scale back a campus center that fights discrimination in court. Police try to crack down on counterfeit basketball tickets. A campus exhibit salutes UNC’s first black basketball player. A UNC student is one of the stars of Mardi Gras in New Orleans. Pickleball is a cross between tennis, badminton, and ping pong – and it’s popular in Chapel Hill.
Local immigrants worry about a possible crackdown by federal agents. UNC System President Margaret Spellings asks the White House to continue the DACA program for young undocumented immigrants. North Carolina’s Lt. Governor wants to stop disruptive campus protests. A UNC conference examines Jewish food in the American South.