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University_Day_2016_160Carolina’s faculty are at the heart of the University’s great national reputation. They attract the finest undergraduate and graduate students in the country, publish respected books and articles, and secure millions of dollars in research grants each year. Their teaching, research and service endeavors epitomize the essence of our commitment to excellence coupled with a true sense of community.

The Need

As a top university, we are often the target of other schools, as well as government and private sector employers, seeking outstanding scholars and researchers. In 2014-2015, for example, 53 of our faculty members were courted with external offers. We made counter offers to 43 of them. We managed to keep 37, often thanks to our counter offers  bolstered by private support.

This success is noteworthy, as it comes against the backdrop of an increasingly competitive market for assistant and associate professors as an entire generation of senior faculty approach retirement.

But other signs raise concerns. To keep our best teacher-scholars, we must compete on salary. But according to our data, in 2014-2015 we ranked 49th, 52nd and 62nd in salary levels for full professor, associate professor and assistant professor, respectively, among top research and AAU institutions. In 2008-2009, those rankings were 25th, 26th and 24th.

Gift Opportunities


Professorships help Carolina recruit and retain outstanding faculty. Income from endowed chairs may be used for salary and/or research support, including course development, research, graduate assistants, equipment and library resources.

Establish Professorships at Carolina

Eminent Professorships – $5 million
An Eminent Professorship is the only endowed professorship that can create and fully fund a new or existing senior faculty position at Carolina.

Distinguished Professorships: $2 million
An endowed Distinguished Professorship may be awarded to a faculty member at the rank of full professor for the duration of his or her full-time service at Carolina. This professorship may be awarded to an assistant or associate professor for a time-limited, renewable period with a change in the working title of the endowed chair to Distinguished Fellow or Distinguished Scholar, respectively.

Term Professorships – $1 million
A Term Professorship is typically awarded for a period of three to five years.

Professor in Practice – $1 million
A Professor in Practice is a senior field-specific expert whose contribution to teaching, research or service is based upon a career of distinguished non-academic achievement. This is usually a fixed-term appointment and can be eligible for renewal. A professor in practice may also offer public lectures, and provide service and leadership in their area of expertise to enhance academic programs and public service.

Visiting Professorships – $1 million
A Visiting Professorship is used to attract outstanding scholars to Carolina by invitation from other institutions for a short period of time, typically up to one year.

Research Fund – $500,000
An endowment to enable the University to support outstanding investigators who conduct valuable research in critical areas.

Ready to Make Your Gift?

Please contact Tim Smith, associate vice chancellor for principal and major gifts, at or 919-962-6385 to discuss endowing a professorship.


Please contact Tim Smith.