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UNC Board of Governors meets in Wilmington

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- The UNC Board of Governors is tealing it. After visiting UNCW, members were singing the school's praises. But there's still plenty of work to do at all schools throughout the state.

UNCW has been recognized as one of the best schools in the region for both education and value. After visiting the campus the UNC Board of Governors say they now understand why.

"You can see it everywhere you can go. You can see it in those bright young students that we met out there today. You can see it in the facilities. You can see it in the faculty," UNC System President Erskine Bowles said.

Many members of the Board of Governors say it's been years since they visited Wilmington. UNCW Chancellor Rosemary DePaolo was happy to welcome the board to campus. She says having them experience the university first hand will help them recognize the school's potential.

"We're not an abstraction to them any more," DePaolo said. "They see what we're about, and they understand it. So obviously when we're discussing issues that have to do with UNCW, they have a better understanding of what we can be."

But tough economic times could make reaching that potential difficult. The board is already working on next year's budget.

"Campuses are in the process of prioritizing their needs, and everything that we're doing is through the filter of challenging times," Board chair Hannah Gage said. "This is going to be a budget of essential needs."

UNCW will face the same tough tuition decisions for the upcoming year as schools throughout the state, but DePaolo points out when compared to other schools throughout the country, UNC schools are usually significantly cheaper.

UNC schools say this year they'll shift their focus from increasing enrollment to improving performance. The UNC System is also working on online education.

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