North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities (NCICU) serves as the statewide voice of private, nonprofit higher education.  NCICU’s 36 colleges and universities reflect the diversity of private, nonprofit higher education in the U.S.  Our institutions include major research universities, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, colleges for women, Minority-Serving Institutions, traditional liberal arts and science institutions, a work college, a two-year college, and professional schools of law, medicine, engineering, and business, among others.  These institutions are accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), or Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools. NCICU’s board of directors is comprised of the presidents of each of the 36 institutions and the president of NCICU serves on the Governor’s North Carolina Education Cabinet.

NCICU colleges and universities enroll more than 88,000 students from all 100 counties in North Carolina, 50 states, and countries around the world, and award one in four bachelor’s degrees and one in three graduate and professional degrees in North Carolina. This educational contribution, combined with the $14.2B economic impact and the 66,000 employees of our colleges and universities, is central to North Carolina’s larger public interests and its future.

NCICU represents independent higher education in matters of state and federal public policy, in addition to being an advocate on issues with other sectors of education in the state. We provide research and information to and about private colleges and universities, offer staff development opportunities, and coordinate collaborative programs among the colleges and universities.

As advocates of independent higher education in the state, we assist in the creation of programs, seek funding for scholarships for high school and college students, and sponsor summer tours of NCICU campuses for high school counselors.

Our Mission

To support, represent, and advocate for North Carolina independent higher education.

Who we are