Each year, UNC receives high rankings for nearly all of its graduate programs. U.S. News & World Report offers a ranking of graduate programs throughout the United States to help potential graduates find which program would be the best fit. From social work to engineering, UNC holds a consistent presence on the leaderboard.
The Daily Tar Heel spoke to deans from many of UNC's ranked graduate programs about this year's success.
Kenan-Flagler Business School
The Kenan-Flagler Business School ranked 19th overall, including a ranking of 11th in accounting and 12th in Executive Masters in Business Administration.
“As we celebrate a century of excellence in business education, you can trace what makes UNC Kenan-Flagler to our roots. Our core values – excellence, leadership, integrity, community and teamwork – shape our extraordinarily collaborative and innovative culture. Our faculty pioneer new ways of learning and create knowledge that matters in the classroom and the boardroom," said Douglas Shackelford, dean of the business school, said in a statement to The Daily Tar Heel.
"Our portfolio of innovative programs – Undergraduate Business, MBA, Master of Accounting, Ph.D. and UNC Executive Development – offer many ways to learn. As a graduate and a dean, I’m proud to be part of an institution that transforms students’ lives and prepares them to be extraordinary leaders, ready to grapple with critical issues with wisdom and courage.”
Shackelford graduated from Kenan-Flagler in 1980 and is also currently a professor of taxation in the school.
UNC School of Social Work
The School of Social Work tied for third overall.
“I am proud of the work of this School of Social Work to advance equity, transform systems and improve lives in North Carolina and beyond," said Gary Bowen, dean of the school, in a statement to the DTH. "Currently ranked nationally as the third-best graduate school of social work, our North Star is to be the leading school of social work known for accelerating discovery and the translation of knowledge into action. As dean, I want our students prepared to build on the strengths inherent in at-risk populations and ready to confront oppression and discrimination in any form or setting. I want them to bring compassion, wisdom, and resolve to address the most challenging social problems.”
UNC School of Medicine
The UNC School of Medicine earned high ranks in a variety of areas, including first in primary care and fourth in family medicine.
“Earning the number one ranking for primary care is a tremendous recognition of our commitment to provide the highest quality primary care possible," Cristy Page, MD, MPH, executive dean of the UNC School of Medicine, said in an email to the DTH. "I’m incredibly proud to be a part of our team effort dedicated to training the next generation of primary care doctors to meet the health needs of our state and nation.”
UNC School of Law
With a 34th overall ranking, UNC School of Law remains a high scorer, with a tie for eighth in legal writing.
"Carolina Law is the oldest professional school in North Carolina," said Martin Brinkley, dean of the law school, said in a statement to the DTH. "For 175 years, we have remained committed to providing a top-quality legal education at an affordable price, giving our students the experiential learning opportunities that will make them practice-ready when they graduate and supporting the next-generation of lawyer-leaders to serve the state and beyond.”
UNC School of Education
This program tied for 27th overall, with rankings in the top 20 for all special areas.
"The School of Education offers a variety of high-impact graduate programs that prepare people for leadership in careers as scholars, educational researchers, educators, school counselors, school psychologists and school system administrators," Jeffrey Greene, associate dean for academic affairs, said in a statement to the DTH.
"We consistently receive strong ratings and other feedback regarding the quality of our graduate programs, and take great satisfaction from the work that our graduates produce, publish, and perform in their communities."
Greene is also the director of graduate studies.
Gillings School of Public Health
The school was named the top public school for public health in the country, tying with Harvard for the second overall top program.
The ranking reflects the dedication of Gillings School faculty, staff, students alumni and donors to improve public health and eliminate health inequities across North Carolina and around the world," said Elizabeth French, assistant dean for strategic initiatives at the school, in a statement.
"Specific factors we believe influenced this outcome include: high quality academic programs designed to develop leaders capable of solving 21st-century public health problems; a research portfolio that allows us to tackle the most challenging public health problems of our time (we are third in the nation in terms of NIH funding for schools of public health; and a world class faculty and students who are solving major public health problems – from advancements in prevention and treatment of Ebola, Zika, HIV, SARS and MERS, to successes in expanding access to clean water and sanitation around the world, to successes in bending the opioid curve in North Carolina and the U.S. Students across our eight departments (and more than 60 academic concentrations and programs) engage in problem solving from the moment they walk through the door."
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