I have no idea if I got into this university because I was a legacy, but I can say for sure that it’s the reason I applied here. I grew up in Virginia, a state with its own fantastic public university, and I went to a small high school in New England that sends, at best, a handful of kids to UNC each year.
If my mom hadn’t gotten her MBA at Kenan-Flagler and fallen in love with Chapel Hill in the process, I’d probably be trudging along in the March slush at some obscure liberal arts school up North right now. I couldn’t be more grateful to be here.
When trying to unpack the reasons behind my visceral sense that legacies should matter, I thought it might be wise to start by understanding what the word means, outside of the context of college admissions jargon.
But far more interesting than the word’s entry in the dictionary were the two sets of synonyms I found under “legacy” in the thesaurus.
The first entry includes words like “inheritance,” “birthright” and “gift.” The second set is along the lines of “consequence” and “spin-off.”