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Convocation 2021
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Chancellor Sartarelli

August 2017

Message from Chancellor Jose V. Sartarelli

Dear Seahawk Community,

Welcome to a pivotal time in UNCW history! The 2017-18 academic year marks the 70th anniversary of UNCW, back then Wilmington College. The university has since grown into a nationally ranked university with more than 16,000 students. With our Strategic Plan in place, we will continue to build on the legacy of excellence embodied by generations of UNCW students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends.

Earlier this month, we welcomed over 2,100 freshmen (pictured above), more than 1,900 transfer students and nearly 60 new faculty members to the campus community. Thank you to the more than 2,000 volunteers and housing staff who helped the Class of 2021 get settled in their rooms during Move-In. We celebrated the start of the semester with Convocation, a series of “UNCWelcome” events and the opening of the renovated Military Resource Lounge. Two Seahawks – employee Julius Collins, an electronics specialist, and David Buzzard ’18 – were recognized for their extraordinary military service at the annual Cape Fear Purple Heart Dinner.

In keeping with UNCW’s global focus, research professor Catharina Alves de Souza; Associate Vice Chancellor for International Programs Michael Wilhelm; and I traveled to Brazil to meet with students and build relationships with partner universities and organizations that sponsor international students.

And once again, UNCW’s commitment to high-quality, affordable educational opportunities has been recognized by national ranking organizations, including The Princeton Review and the website College Choice, which placed UNCW 9th nationally on a list of the Best Online Education Degrees for 2017. I am confident that our students, faculty and staff will make 2017-18 another outstanding academic year.

Wings Up, Seahawks! 

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Jose V. Sartarelli


WATCH: Move-In went smoothly, thanks to the efforts of student, faculty, staff and community volunteers. In this video, hear two students explain why UNCW was their first choice, and watch highlights from Move-in.

New Faculty 2017

Chancellor Sartarelli (left) and Provost Marilyn Sheerer (right) greeted new UNCW faculty members at the Wise House.


Eyes turned skyward on Aug. 21 as UNCW hosted two solar eclipse viewing events on campus. With safety in mind, event organizers made sure that plenty of properly filtered glasses were available for eclipse watchers.


Chancellor Sartarelli traveled to his native Brazil and met with prospective students at EducationUSA College Fairs in Rio de Janeiro (above), Brasília and São Paulo. The visit enhanced partnerships with universities and other organizations.


Rebecca Christiansen (left) of the UNCW Career Center, Amanda Crowe of In Gear Career (center) and Siobhan Norris of the UNCW Office of Military Affairs cut a cake celebrating the reopening of the renovated Military Resource Lounge and the launch of the UNCW chapter of In Gear Career. The nonprofit provides career support for military spouses.


Members of the Wilmington Fire Department, City Council and UNCW partners gathered for a "roll-in ceremony" at Station 8 on Eastwood Road, which serves UNCW. The new "Engine 8" sports the Seahawk logo on all four sides.


After cutting the ribbon on the renovated Recreational Field Complex, Chancellor Sartarelli joined Maddy and Tyler McNeilly in a friendly game of soccer. Maddy, 9 (left), and Tyler, 5 (right), are the children of Senior Associate Dean of Students Jennie McNeilly and Director of Campus Recreation Tim McNeilly.

Joseph Pawlik

Joseph Pawlik, Frank Hawkins Kenan Distinguished Professor of Marine Biology

Melinda Anderson

Melinda Anderson, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies and Director of University College

Ashley Futral Chapman '05

Ashley Futral Chapman '05, Freediving World Record Holder

Yishi Wang

Yishi Wang, Professor of Statistics

Robert Tyndall

Robert Tyndall, 2017 StarNewsMedia Lifetime Achievement Award Winner

Sara Thorndike

Sara Thorndike, NACUBO "2017 Rising Star"

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