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Appalachian State University, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The transformational Appalachian experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and embrace diversity and difference. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina system, Appalachian enrolls about 18,000 students, has a low faculty-to-student ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.
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Appalachian State University is committed to developing and allocating resources to the fundamental task of creating a diverse campus culture. We value diversity as the expression of human similarities and differences, as well as the importance of a living and learning environment conducive to knowledge, respect, acceptance, understanding and global awareness.
Boone, N.C., is a college town in the best sense – a place where people say hello on the street and with a vibrant downtown a block from campus. Its eclectic hub, known as King Street, features specialty shops, restaurants and cultural attractions that appeal to students, parents, residents and tourists. Whether in town for a weekend or a four-year education, many people find it difficult to leave Boone.
Boone’s accolades include National Geographic Adventure magazine’s “Best Places to Live and Play,” Outside magazine’s top 10 “Best Towns in America,” USA Today’s “10 Great Small Towns with Huge Backyards," ”U.S. News and World Report’s “10 Best Places to Retire in the U.S." and TripAdvisor’s “Hidden Gems: 13 U.S. Towns That Are Diamonds in the Rough.”
Boone is ranked the 10th safest place in North Carolina by Movoto.com and 19th in SafeWise.com’s “50 Safest Cities in North Carolina,” based on the latest FBI crime report data.
The surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains attract outdoors enthusiasts year-round for hiking, skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking, cycling, fishing, kayaking, rock climbing and other activities. The Blue Ridge Parkway, which draws some 20 million visitors a year, and a section of the Appalachian Trail that runs from Virginia through western North Carolina are both just minutes from campus.
Preserving these mountains is essential to Appalachian’s character. An ethic of sustainability resounds through the campus and local community, as evident through an on-campus electricity-generating wind turbine, a commitment to making new buildings efficiently designed and LEED® certified, a biodiesel-powered public transportation system and research and academic degree programs that focus on issues related to energy, economics and the environment. Many sustainability projects on campus are funded by a Renewable Energy Initiative fee, which students overwhelmingly supported as a way to ensure a better future for all.
The natural setting puts outdoor recreation and experiential learning programs at our doorstep and the heritage of the region is alive on and around campus. The university’s location also attracts students, faculty and staff interested in sustainable development and the economics of sustainability. As a result, the Research Institute for Environment, Energy and Economics is spearheading cutting-edge research that is making Appalachian a leader in this area.
The 2010 U.S. Census lists the population of Watauga County at 51,079 and the population of Boone at 17,122. Boone is known for having friendly, safe neighborhoods and quality schools. The Watauga County Schools system has a long-standing reputation as one of the best in the state, with students consistently outperforming their statewide peers on the state's standardized tests. Average SAT scores are the second highest among the state's 115 school systems. Watauga County also boasts a high number of National Board Certified teachers, and North Carolina leads the country in the number of Board Certified personnel by a wide margin.
Appalachian State University aspires to be the destination institution for dedicated students who seek challenging academic programs and co-curricular experiences, engaged faculty and a vibrant campus culture that will shape them into engaged, responsible global citizens. Inspired by the ideal of sustainable community, we seek to deliver the Southeast’s best comprehensive, progressive education. Additionally, the university will provide excellent value; will be an influential world citizen; and will develop a distinctive identity built on the university's strengths, location and tradition.