In January 2017, the Board of Governors of the University of North Carolina unanimously approved Higher Expectations, a five-year Strategic Plan for the UNC System. The Plan called on the UNC System to achieve ambitious goals in access, student success, affordability and efficiency, economic impact and community engagement, and institutional excellence and diversity. As the current Plan runs through the end of the 2021-22 academic year, the UNC Board of Governors and President Peter Hans have committed to refreshing the plan in order to build on the System’s remarkable success over the next five years.

Along with updated metrics and targets under the original five themes, the Plan will also include a variety of new goals and metrics related to current initiatives in the UNC System. Some of these new areas may include addressing mental health, better serving adult students (including veterans and military-affiliated North Carolinians), and reducing student debt. The process will take place over the coming months with ample opportunity for stakeholders to share comments and feedback. The refreshed plan will go before the Board of Governors in May 2022 for review and approval. 


Current and Potential Areas of Focus

System Office staff are currently reviewing existing metrics and targets, as well as collecting baseline data for potential new areas of focus. projected data review. This data review will help facilitate the refresh of existing metrics and targets and identification of any new metrics to include in the plan. This data review will help facilitate the creation of new benchmarks for campuses and stakeholders to review. To learn more about the current plan and outcomes from year 1-4, please view the presentation given to the Board of Governors in January 2022 and the public dashboards.

Along with the current goals, the UNC System is evaluating the inclusion of new priorities in order to better align the refreshed plan with strategic initiatives, challenges, and opportunities that have emerged since 2017. Some of the additional strategic areas under review are:

  • Better serving various student populations including adult learners, military-affiliated students, and transfer students
  • Lowering costs for both students and institutions to lower student debt
  • Increasing post-graduation outcomes
  • Improving the employee experience
  • Committing to a mission-focused performance model


Town Halls

The UNC System Office, in consultation with campuses, is hosting a virtual town hall at each of the 17 constituent institutions in March 2022. These town halls allow university stakeholders including faculty, staff, students, alumni, and others to provide direct feedback on this refresh process.

During each town hall, University officials will provide an overview of the outcomes from the current plan and an update on goals and potential metrics for inclusion in the refreshed plan. Lastly, stakeholders will participate in a feedback and question/answer session. Feedback received from this portion will inform the development of the final goals and metrics.

Register for a Town Hall.

Appalachian StateTuesday, March 22, 202211 a.m.Register
East CarolinaTuesday, March 15, 202211 a.m.Register
Elizabeth City StateMonday, March 28, 20223 p.m.Register
Fayetteville StateWednesday, March 23, 202211 a.m.Register
N.C. A&T StateWednesday, March 30, 202211 a.m.Register
NC CentralWednesday, March 16, 20223 p.m.Register
NC StateMonday, March 21, 202211 a.m.Register
UNC AshevilleTuesday, March 29, 202211 a.m.Register
UNC-Chapel HillMonday, March 28, 202211 a.m.Register
UNC CharlotteMonday, March 14, 202211 a.m.Register
UNC GreensboroMonday, March 14, 20223 p.m.Register
UNC PembrokeWednesday, March 23, 20223 p.m.Register
UNC School of the ArtsWednesday, March 16, 202211 a.m.Register
UNC WilmingtonThursday, March 17, 202211 a.m.Register
Western CarolinaMonday, March 21, 20223 p.m.Register
Winston-Salem StateTuesday, March 22, 20223 p.m.Register
NC School of Science and MathematicsThursday, March 24, 20223 p.m.Register

Public Survey

The UNC System’s public survey will allow all university stakeholders to review the current plan and provide feedback on the refresh process. This survey will be distributed through university, email, and media communication.

We encourage all stakeholders, internal and external, to participate in the survey process. Participate in the survey.

Open-Ended Feedback

Submit your feedback here.