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President Hans

Peter Hans is the seventh president of the University of North Carolina System and a lifelong supporter of public higher education. As a first-generation college graduate from rural North Carolina, he knows the value of access to an affordable, high-quality education for everyone.

Since taking the helm of the UNC System in August of 2020, President Hans has advocated for adult learners, fought to lower costs for students, championed the renovation of facilities in need of repair, and steered the state’s public universities through the challenges of the pandemic. He came to the role after serving as the ninth president of the North Carolina Community College System, where he oversaw improvements in completion rates, increased public funding and private giving, and growth in business partnerships.

Strengthening ties between community colleges and universities remains a core goal for President Hans. He has served on the boards of both systems, having been elected by the legislature to the State Board of Community Colleges (1997-2003) and the UNC Board of Governors (2003-2015). As Chairman of the BOG from 2012 to 2014, Hans pushed for streamlined transfer agreements, greater focus on online education, and identifying administrative efficiencies that could be re-invested in student support.

Earlier in his career, he served as senior policy advisor to three members of the United States Senate, counseled the private sector on public affairs at one of the state’s largest law firms, and supported UNC System President Margaret Spellings on key policy initiatives.

President Hans grew up in the small North Carolina towns of Southport on the coast and Hendersonville in the mountains. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from UNC-Chapel Hill and a Master of Liberal Arts in Extension Studies from Harvard University.

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