Today is University Day at UNC Chapel Hill, and Chancellor Holden Thorp has put a twist on the traditional State of the University address that campus leaders here customarily give as part of the day's celebration.
This year, Thorp gave a virtual address. You can click on the 9-minute youtube video below or click here to read the transcript.
The chancellor doesn't break any news in this year's address. Mostly, it's a summary of all that went on in the past year. It emphasizes the budget crisis that sapped $67 million from university coffers, and the Bain report, created by a consultant to help the university streamline its administrative and financial operations.
And it also trumpets some highlights from the past year, like the national championship in basketball, the success of Anoop Desai on American Idol, and the fact that the university produced two Rhodes Scholars.
On the budget issue: Thorp mentions that the economic crisis has led more students to request financial aid in order to get to or stay in college. The university has managed to patch aid packages together for all who needed them; the Carolina Covenant program, which offers full aid funding for students who demonstrate great financial need, has swelled and now accounts for 11 percent of the first-year class.
At 11 this morning, Gov. Beverly Perdue will give the keynote University Day address at Memorial Hall.