North Carolina State University at Raleigh

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Public, 4-year or above
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Doctoral Universities: Very High Research Activity
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Founded in 1887 as North Carolina’s land-grant institution, North Carolina State University is one of the South’s most accomplished public research universities, and a model for effective academic-industry interaction. Originally the North Carolina College of Agricultural and Mechanic Arts, NC State fulfilled the land-grant mission of providing the best and most current instruction in practical knowledge – the foundations of applied science and engineering – as well as military strategy. Throughout the 20th century, NCSU grew into a world-class research institution, with highly-ranked textile, nuclear engineering, veterinary science, and bioengineering programs, as well as top-tier liberal arts and professional studies. U.S. News & World Report ranked NCSU one of the 50 best public universities in the nation, and Kiplinger’s has named it a top value.

Academic Programs

From its roots in agriculture and mechanics, North Carolina State University developed into one of the South’s top STEM-heavy public universities. As a reflection of North Carolina’s industrial heritage (dominated by textile and paper mills until the mid-20th century), NCSU’s paper engineering and textile engineering are two of the most unique programs at the university. The College of Agricultural and Life Sciences is among the nation’s most influential schools of its kind, with bioengineering, food processing, and other 21st century sciences rooted in NCSU’s 19th century origins. Also originating in the agriculture school, the College of Veterinary Medicine is ranked #3 nationally by U.S. News. With well over 100 undergraduate, and more than 160 master’s and doctoral degrees, NCSU is central to professional and scientific life in North Carolina.  

As a major public research university, NCSU has built a global reputation in a number of fields. Along with the University of North Carolina and Duke University, NC State University became one of the corners of the Research Triangle beginning in the 1950s; the proximity of three top-tier research institutions make the region one of the first high-tech hubs in America. Today, NCSU is still a leader in academic and industry cooperation, with the innovative and influential Centennial Campus providing a place for laboratories, entrepreneurial start-ups, and corporate offices in a cutting-edge environment.

Student Life

With around 35,000 students, North Carolina State is one of the largest universities in the South, and one of the busiest. Located in North Carolina’s capital city of Raleigh, NCSU is surrounded by culture and activity, from professional sports to a national music scene, and State contributes more than its share to the city in the form of cultural events and economic footprint. More than 700 student-led clubs and organizations give students virtually any opportunity for social connection, personal development, professional networking, and community service. Some of State’s most unusual traditions include the Krispy Kreme Challenge (in which students 2.5 miles from campus to the Krispy Kreme donut shop, eat a dozen donuts, and run back), and the Free Expression Tunnel, where students are encouraged to graffiti.

NC State University’s athletics program is one of the most storied and successful in American history. The NCSU Wolfpack competes in the NCAA Division I Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) in 23 varsity programs. The Wolfpack has won numerous national championships, and the basketball team has a legendary reputation (especially under its late coach Jim Valvano, known as Jimmy V by fans). State’s historical rivalry with the University of North Carolina – always intense, often fierce – extends across multiple sports, and even into social activities.

Ready to start your journey?

Ready to start your journey?