Reaching and Inspiring Student Excellence

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Reaching and Inspiring Student Excellence (RISE)

Seahawk RISE seeks to inspire emerging leaders through active campus involvement and community engagement. The program is designed for first-year students from rural counties as defined by the State of North Carolina. To see if you are from an eligible NC county, click here.

By participating in programming and activities, Seahawk RISE students are immersed in their new community where they learn to navigate campus resources and opportunities, build meaningful relationships, and develop skills and strategies to thrive at UNCW and beyond.

Participants live in Graham-Hewlett Hall and enroll in shared courses, including First Year Seminar (UNI 101) and Principles of Leadership (LED 211). Additional programming for Seahawk RISE participants includes:

  • Early move-in. RISE students move in 3 days before everyone else!
  • A designated academic advisor, peer mentors and instructors who are committed to your success
  • Workshops to facilitate networking and to explore majors and career opportunities
  • Coursework promoting leadership skills and opening the door to a Leadership Studies minor

RISE students who successfully complete the first year of the program receive a $500 retention scholarship. 

The application for the 2020-2021 Seahawk RISE program is now open for students from rural North Carolina counties who have been admitted to UNCW and paid their deposit. Interested students are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. The priority deadline to apply is May 8; however admission is rolling and applications will be accepted until spots are filled. Click here to apply.

If you have questions, please email