14 Reasons Why UNCW Is An Incredible School

14 Reasons Why UNCW Is An Incredible School

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When people hear the word "college" and "North Carolina" in the same sentence, schools like Duke University or the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill come to mind. Rarely do they think of the smaller North Carolina school located about a mile from the beach, the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

UNCW is a school that flies under the radar in many aspects and is one that many people don't always think about when thinking about schools. There are many things that make UNCW amazing such as...

1. It's located near the beach.

There is nothing like getting out of class and heading to the beach to get some color or camping out on warmer nights. The sunrises and sunsets are incredible as well. Going to school on the beach is definitely something that adds to the college experience.

2. The class sizes

The student to faculty ratio at UNCW is 17:1 and over 60 percent of the classes have between 20-49 students while about 30 percent have under 20 students per class. This allows for a stronger relationship to develop between the student and professor. It also allows for an easier environment to learn because professors get to know you.

3. Our basketball team

We may not have a football team, but that doesn't mean we're not into sports. Most people don't know that we're a Division One sports school. Our basketball team just won their conference championship and are heading to NCAA March Madness! Go Seahawks!

4. Downtown Wilmington

Not only do we have the beach, but just a few miles from campus we have a wonderful area with shops and restaurants and clubs, it is also the home to many famous filming locations such as "We're the Millers" and "One Tree Hill." Getting dressed up and going downtown, whether it is for the day, for dinner, or a night out, is always a lot of fun!

5. Study abroad opportunities

Studying abroad is something many people want to do, but can't afford or manage to fit a semester abroad in their crazy schedule. What makes UNCW great is that they understand and offer opportunities for students to go abroad for shorter times as well! Students have the opportunity to study elsewhere through the school during school breaks, towards the end of the semester for a few weeks, a few weeks after school gets out, over the summer, or a semester! This allows for students to work getting overseas into their schedule!

6. The buildings

If you attend or have visited UNCW, you'll understand what I mean when I say even the buildings are beautiful. Just take the Watson College of Education Building for example; it makes going to class a lot more enjoyable.

7. Beach Blast

What other school sends their students to the beach the day before classes start? The school shuttles thousands of students back and forth throughout the warm summer day in August to the beach to enjoy a day in the sun with food, friends, and free stuff!

8. The professors

The professors at UNCW are impressive as well. I mean, who else can say that the president of the American Psychological Association teaches at their school? Not to mention, even the ex-chancellor teaches a class! The professors also always go out of their way to help you and want to watch you succeed.

9. The family environment

UNCW may not be the smallest university or the largest, with about 12,000 students enrolled, which allows you to see some familiar faces while walking around campus but lets you see new ones along the way as well! Everyone is super friendly, which takes away the scary college fear!

10. The social life

Every school differs in what scene dominates the social life, but UNCW has a mixture of it all! You can go to the beach, beach bars, downtown clubbing, to the karaoke club, fraternity parties, house parties, concerts, plays, or even just hang around the dorm. The options are endless, so whatever you feel like doing, you'll be able to do!

11. The student recreation center

The student recreation center contains an abundance of machines, basketball courts, an indoor track, pool, weight training machines, racquetball courts, group exercise rooms, and more. It makes gaining the freshman 15 a lot more difficult!

12. The size

You can make it across campus in under 15 minutes if necessary. The size is perfect for people not wanting an overwhelmingly large school yet something a little bit bigger than a typical small school.

13. The weather

The beauty of North Carolina weather is that although there is a change in seasons, winter is rather short, which makes for more time for the warmer weather! If you're originally from up north, you'll most definitely appreciate the one-inch snow days that cause classes to be canceled as well! Plus, there will be random days in the winter where it will feel like it's summer!

14. The campus

I think the pictures tell the story here.

There are a variety of reasons why UNCW is such an amazing school and place and the list could go on forever. It may not be the first one you thought about when hearing about schools in North Carolina, but with numerous programs and opportunities, it is definitely a school that would make for a great college choice!

Cover Image Credit: Flickr

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

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When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

SEE ALSO: They're Not Junkies, You're Just Uneducated

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

Cover Image Credit: http://crashingintolove.tumblr.com/post/62246881826/pieffysessanta-tumblr-com

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Sports And Religion

Why are so many athletes religious?

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I recently just made it on to the USC Track and Field team, and it is easily the biggest accomplishment I have ever made in my entire life. I worked so hard to physically and mentally prepare to try out for the team, let alone actually make it. I thank God for allowing me to have the chance to be a part of this team, as well as giving me that physical and mental strength required to do so, and I express this whenever someone congratulates me for making the team or even asks if I made it or not. However, I noticed that when I did this, some of the responses were a bit dismissive when I brought religion into the picture. When I said I thank God for it, I would be met with responses like "Yea well even aside from God..." or another response that drew the conversation away from my faith, away from the concept of a god.

In fact, I've noticed that many athletes are religious in some form-- more so collectively than other student bodies aside from religious groups themselves. I thought about why this may be, aside from the obvious answer such as growing up religious at home, because that does not answer the question; many people grew up in a religious household and are not religious themselves. So, I began to think personally. Why do I thank God for my athletic performance? There's a certain level of uncertainty within every sport. All athletes train their hardest to minimize this level of uncertainty, in order to maximize their chances of success. However, you can only train so hard. To me, no matter how hard you train, there's always some type of level of uncertainty to every level of performance: the chances of you getting injured, the chances of you winning your game or race, the chances of the opponent's performance, etc. This is where I think God intervenes, and perhaps other athletes would agree. There have been countless times where I ran well and had absolutely no idea how I did it. Yes, I worked hard to improve my times, but when you are in the moment of a race, or a game, that fades into the background, especially when everyone else has been working just as hard. It's just you, your race (or game), and God. That's it.

I could have not made the team. As a walk-on, there is more pressure for you to perform since the coaches did not seek you out; you sought them out. You are proving your abilities. Thus, I was nervous about my chances of actually making the team, especially considering the fact that the USC track team is arguably the best collegiate track team in the United States. I performed well during my try out and finished all the workouts, however I wasn't as fast as the other girls. In addition, I was 3 minutes late to my last day of tryouts and got chewed out by the coach for it. I was convinced that I blew my chances. And yet, somehow, I made it. I worked so hard for it, yes, but I thank God for keeping my body healthy so I could train to the best of my ability. I thank Him for allowing the coaches to have the time to try me out. I thank Him for allowing them to see my potential. I thank Him for giving me the best high school track coach possible who prepared me mentally and physically, as well as supported me throughout all the highs and all the lows. I thank Him for giving me this chance to continue my track career at the most prestigious collegiate team. My gratitude for all this, is simply infinite.

There is good reason why many athletes are religious; being an athlete requires you to be more than yourself. It requires you to dig deeper, into places that you didn't even think were possible, and really aren't without the belief of a higher power. The belief in a higher power, in whatever form or name that takes, means the belief in infinite possibility. And for an athlete to have that, means nothing can stop them from chasing their dreams.

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