Committee on Special Talent
Charge and Procedures
The Statement on the Evaluation of Candidates for Admission, approved by the Advisory Committee on Undergraduate Admissions in September 2007, commits the University to “comprehensive and individual evaluations” of all candidates for undergraduate admission. These evaluations, in the words of the Statement, “aim to draw together students who will enrich each other’s education, strengthen the campus community, contribute to the betterment of society, and help the University achieve its broader mission.”
In keeping with this commitment, the Advisory Committee charges the Committee on Special Talent with advising the Office of Undergraduate Admissions on the admission of students who, in accordance with trustee policy, “give evidence of possessing special talents for University programs requiring such special talents.”
Specifically, the Advisory Committee charges the committee with:
- Recommending to the Advisory Committee policies regarding the admission of students with special talent that are consistent with the mission of the University and with policies established by the UNC-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees and the UNC-system Board of Governors.
- Establishing admissions procedures for students with special talent that maintain the academic integrity of the University; respect the competitiveness of admission to Carolina; recognize the contributions that talented students can make to the education and the experience of everyone within the campus community; and encourage the eventual success, as students and citizens, of those candidates who are admitted and choose to enroll.
- Evaluating prospective students presented by University programs requiring special talent—currently defined as programs administered by the departments of athletics, dramatic art, and music—who (a) have predicted first-year grade-point averages lower than 2.3; (b) require review for possible breaches of community standards for academic or personal behavior; or (c) may only be admitted as exceptions to UNC-system policies and regulations because they do not meet minimum course or admissions requirements established by the Board of Governors.
- Advising the Office of Undergraduate Admissions on the capacity of the students described above to succeed academically and personally at the University, both individually and as a class within the programs that they will join.
- Reviewing the final decisions made by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, and receiving and responding to the explanation offered by that office should any final decision differ from the decision recommended by the committee.
- Reporting activities, decisions, and outcomes to the Advisory Committee at least once per academic year.
The committee consists of at least six voting members, the majority of whom are tenured or tenure-track faculty members in the College of Arts and Sciences. With the exception of the Faculty Athletics Representative to the NCAA and the Associate Dean for Academic Advising, who serve as voting members of the committee ex officio, voting members are appointed by the chair of the Advisory Committee on Undergraduate Admissions and serve an initial term of three years. Members appointed by the chair may be reappointed for one additional term but may not serve more than six consecutive years.
The committee chair is appointed by the chair of the Advisory Committee and serves a term of one year. The committee chair may be reappointed but may not serve more than three consecutive years.
1. The chair is responsible for moderating committee meetings and for ensuring that all members have ample opportunity to voice their opinions and their questions.
2. Recommendations regarding the admission of talented students require a vote of the committee by show of hands. At the request of any committee member, voting will be conducted by secret ballot. With the exception of the Associate Dean for Academic Advising, only faculty members may vote.
3. For cases that require a recommendation before the full committee can meet, the committee authorizes the chair, in consultation with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions and one or more committee members, to act on the case or convey the information to the full committee by secure electronic transmission for a full vote. Recommendations authorized by the chair will be reported at the next regularly scheduled committee meeting.
4. Before each meeting, all members of the committee, including non-voting members, will receive and review the credentials of the prospective students who are on the agenda.
5. At the beginning of each meeting, the committee will discuss the students individually, as a group, and in light of students previously reviewed. As part of this discussion, representatives of the Office of Undergraduate Admissions will present background information about each candidate’s curriculum, academic performance, test scores, and high school, as well as any other information they consider necessary for a full and fair consideration of the candidate.
6. Representatives from the University programs will then present each candidate, focusing on the student’s academic history and potential, character and personal circumstances, expected contribution to the program, and any other information that they believe will help the committee see the candidate in the appropriate context. The program representatives will also respond to any questions posed by the committee. These questions will normally range widely and may include, for example, requests for information in the following areas:
- The candidate’s academic history, character, and work ethic;
- The performance of the program’s previous candidates, both as students and as citizens at the University, and the ways in which the current candidate is similar to or different from these students;
- The extent to which the program is prepared to support the candidate academically and personally, given the likely needs of the individual candidate and the program’s entering class as a whole; and
- The approach that the program takes in setting academic standards, monitoring performance, and intervening to assure acceptable outcomes.
While program representatives are present, committee members will direct all questions and discussion to them and not to other members of the committee.
7. Following these presentations, the committee will discuss each candidate and vote to recommend one of the following actions to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions:
- Offer admission to the candidate, provided he or she meets any additional conditions that may be specified by the committee;
- Deny admission to the candidate;
- Defer action until more information can be gathered.
Ordinarily, a vote to defer action should specify what information the committee will require in order to decide whether to admit or deny the candidate, as well as when the committee will reconsider the candidate’s credentials.
8. Following the vote, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions will consider the committee’s recommendation in making its decision regarding the candidate. The office will communicate both its decision and the committee’s recommendation to the program that presented the candidate.
9. At least once per year, the committee will review the progress of past candidates, the threshold used to decide what candidates come before the committee, and the approaches used by each University program to ensure the success of future committee cases.
Adopted January 2010
Revised November 2012
|Last Name||First Name||Department||School||Constituency||Term Expires|
|Addo||Fenaba||Public Policy||Arts and Sciences||Chair Appointee||2024|
|Bell||Bernard||Entrepreneurship||Arts and Sciences||Chair Appointee||2024|
|Broome||Lissa||Law||Law||ACC/NCAA Representative||EO (voting)|
|Kris||Michael||Music||Arts and Sciences||Chair Appointee||2024|
|Layne||Priscilla||Germanic and Slavic Language and Literature||Arts and Sciences||Chair Appointee||2024|
|Navalinsky||Dave||Dramatic Art||Arts and Sciences||Chair Appointee||2024|
|Russell||Chloē||Associate Dean||Academic Advising||Academic Advising Representative||EO (voting)|
|Unah||Isaac||Political Science||Arts and Sciences||Chair Appointee||2024|
Michelle Brown, Director of the Academic Support Program for Student Athletes
Jason McGrath, Associate Provost and Director of Undergraduate Admissions
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