North Carolina (NC) Universities, Colleges, and Career Education

There are over 125 public and private non-profit colleges, universities and career education options in North Carolina (NC). Learn about the schools with the highest graduation rates and lowest costs to find the school for you.

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North Carolina offers a full range of schools at the postsecondary level, including traditional 2-year public, 2-year and 4-year private non-profit colleges and universities. To help evaluate the choices, compare the schools in four separate areas based on data from the National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES).

North Carolina Schools Near Large Cities

North Carolina has plenty of large cities within its borders. These cities house both private and public institutions. All but the community college offer undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

  • Central Piedmont Community College (Charlotte)
  • North Carolina State University at Raleigh (Raleigh)
  • University of North Carolina at Charlotte (Charlotte)
  • University of North Carolina at Greensboro (Greensboro)
  • North Carolina A & T State University (Greensboro)

Largest Schools in North Carolina

Some of the more prestigious universities in the state of North Carolina are also the ones with the largest student enrollment, according to figures from fall 2014. All but one are 4-year public schools.

  • North Carolina State University at Raleigh (33,989 students)
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (29,135 students)
  • East Carolina University (27,511 students)
  • University of North Carolina at Charlotte (27,238 students)
  • Wake Technical Community College (21,384 students)

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Agriculture
  • Architecture
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences
  • Business
  • Communications and Journalism
  • Computer Sciences
  • Culinary Arts and Personal Services
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Legal
  • Liberal Arts and Humanities
  • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
  • Medical and Health Professions
  • Physical Sciences
  • Psychology
  • Transportation and Distribution
  • Visual and Performing Arts

Lowest Net Price

NCES determines the 2014-2015 net costs of colleges by subtracting the government or institution financial aid a student receives from the total cost of attending the college. The schools in this list offered the lowest net prices among traditional public and private non-profit colleges in North Carolina, for full-time students.

  • Elizabeth City State University ($2,345)
  • Roanoke-Chowan Community College ($2,396)
  • Wayne Community College ($2,955)
  • Halifax Community College ($3,375)
  • Forsyth Technical Community College ($3,686)

Highest Graduation Rate

The success of a college, which may be determined by its graduation rate, is often an important factor to aspiring students. The NCES determines these rates based on the number of student who began their studies in 2009 and completed them in 150% of the 'normal time' it takes to complete the program. The NC schools featured here had the highest graduation rates among public and private non-profit colleges for full-time students.

  • Duke University (95% graduation rate)
  • Davidson College (93% graduation rate)
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (90% graduation rate)
  • Wake Forest University (88% graduation rate)
  • Elon University (83% graduation rate)

The four categories presented will help you break down the choices you'll have when deciding on a school that is suited to your study goals.

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