Why Carolina

The Graduate School at the University of South Carolina is rooted in a rich tradition of scholarship, innovation, and spirit. Here are some of the reasons why grad students love Carolina:

Our graduate programs are top ranked. USC is a premier academic and research institution that boasts award-winning students, renowned faculty and some of the best doctoral programs in the country, according to the National Research Council. The Carnegie Foundation places Carolina among the top public research universities in the country, citing its “very high research activity.”

Our campus is historic. (And lucky.) Our antebellum structures—including the first free standing college library in the US—dodged fires and survived the Civil War by morphing into makeshift hospitals. When you go to our Horseshoe, a symbol of luck, and famously listed on the National Register of Historic Places, you’ll recognize a similarity between the Maxcy Monument and DC’s Washington Monument. Robert Mills, renowned South Carolina architect, designed both.

Our vision is spirited. Mindful of our history, we remain doggedly committed to innovation and focused on the future. When we build new structures, we incorporate ecologically responsible design. For this, we have been awarded the Green Star by the National Wildlife Federation and the highest green rating by Princeton Review. When we start transportation projects, we incorporate creative and sensible solutions. Our campus leads the way in the South for its bike-friendly culture and sustainable transportation initiatives, as recognized by the League of American Bicyclists.

Our scholars are savvy. U.S. News & World Report places USC among the top ten "most promising and innovative" universities. Citing academic excellence, The Wall Street Journal calls Carolina a top "up and coming university." Faculty research continues to expand, topping a record $250.1 million for the last fiscal year. Meanwhile graduate students win top national fellowships, netting millions of dollars in awards. Duly prepared for life in and outside the academy, students enjoy access to 21 dual degree programs, while graduates rank nationally in number of startup businesses.

Our climate is friendly. (Especially on the wallet.) The Princeton Review and Kiplinger’s Personal Finance both tout the value of a Carolina education, citing our top-flight academics and affordable rates. Coupled with Columbia’s low cost of living and warm climate (we average 217 days of sun a year), the value of a graduate education at Carolina is tough to beat!