Numerous degree programs throughout the UNC System equip students with the requisite knowledge and skills for meaningful careers that generate excellent returns for both alumni and the North Carolina economy. This talent pool attracts businesses and residents to the state, expanding job opportunities, further developing the labor force, and fostering economic growth.
Recent data from the Texas Public Policy Foundation on post-graduation debt and income, however, suggest that a substantial proportion of programs fail to generate satisfactory economic outcomes that reasonably enable alumni to pay back their student loan debt.
The TPPF data demonstrate the performance of more than 900 bachelor’s, master’s, professional, and doctoral degree programs across North Carolina. By categorizing these programs based on the debt and income of their graduates, we are able to identify those programs that are most in need of oversight, reform, or closure.
This report also allows prospective students and their families to make better-informed decisions regarding their college and later careers. Unlike resources that merely review the potential income for types of programs generally, this report provides detailed information on income and debt for specific programs at specific schools in North Carolina, providing a uniquely high-resolution picture of the financial risks and opportunities faced by UNC students today.