University of North Georgia

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University of North Georgia
University of North Georgia logo.png
Former names
North Georgia College & State University
Gainesville College (merged)
Motto The Military College of Georgia
Type Public
Established 1873 (1873)(as North Georgia Agricultural College)
2013 (2013)(as the University of North Georgia)[1]
Endowment $27,055,895 (2014)[2]
President Bonita Jacobs
Provost Richard Oates (Acting)
Students 16,064 (Fall 2014)[3]
Undergraduates 15,507 (Fall 2014)[3]
Postgraduates 557 (Fall 2014)[3]
Campus Suburban; 212 acres (0.86 km2) (Dahlonega campus)
794 acres (3.21 km2) (all campuses)
Colors Blue and Gold
Nickname Nighthawks
Sporting affiliations
NCAA Division IIPeach Belt Conference

The University of North Georgia (UNG) is an educational institution that was established by the University System of Georgia Board of Regents on January 8, 2013,[4] as a result of the consolidation of North Georgia College & State University and Gainesville State College. The consolidation of the two schools was announced on January 10, 2012, and the name of the new school was announced on May 8, 2012.[5][6] The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) approved the consolidation December 11, 2012.[4] The combined institution has campus locations in Dahlonega, Oakwood (Gainesville Campus), Watkinsville (Oconee Campus), Blue Ridge, and Cumming.

With over 16,000 enrolled students, the University of North Georgia is the sixth largest public university in the state of Georgia. Within UNG, there are five colleges which collectively offer over one hundred bachelor's and associate degrees, as well as thirteen master's degrees and one doctoral degree. 696 students are involved in the university's ROTC program, which has given it the designation as The Military College of Georgia. The university is one of six senior military colleges in the United States.


North Georgia Agricultural College began as a branch of the Georgia College of Agriculture and Mechanical which was created by the University of Georgia (UGA) in 1873 from funds from the Morrill Act. William Pierce Price, a local congressman, persuaded officials at UGA to use part of the funds to establish a branch of the newly created college in Dahlonega, Georgia, Price's birthplace and home. The college opened classes in 1873 with 177 students, 98 males and 79 females, making it the first coeducational college in the state.[citation needed] Classes were originally held in the old U.S. mint building that was shut down during the Civil War. After the college was awarded the power to grant degrees in 1876, the first graduating class received degrees in 1879. The first graduating class of four consisted of three men and one woman, making North Georgia the first public institution in the state to award a degree to a female.

The college had always had a military presence, since land-grant schools were required to teach military tactics, but it was not until World War I when the military programs began to grow. The National Defense Act of 1916 that created the ROTC also helped establish the military presence that is felt on the campus today. In 1929 the designation of Agricultural was dropped from the name and the school became North Georgia College. By 1932 the college was reduced to a two-year junior college. World War II saw a decline in enrollment because of the number of male students joining the war effort. This changed when an Army Specialized Training Program was placed at the college to train junior officers. After the war the college grew because of young servicemen and veterans using their GI bill benefits to attend school. By 1946 the college was reinstated as a four-year college. In the 1950s, Dahlonega provided gold for the leafing of the capitol building. It was also at this time that similar efforts to gold leaf Price Memorial Hall were begun, a project that did not see fruition until 1973.[7]

On January 10, 2012, the University System of Georgia approved the consolidation of North Georgia College and State University with Gainesville State College to form a new institution, the University of North Georgia in January 2013.


The University of North Georgia has campuses located in Dahlonega, Oakwood (Gainesville), Watkinsville (Oconee), Cumming and Blue Ridge. Collectively, there is 794 acres (321 ha) of land among the Dahlonega, Oakwood, and Watkinsville campuses.[8][9]

Dahlonega Campus[edit]

UNG's Dahlonega campus has existed since its establishment as North Georgia Agricultural College in 1873. It was not until 1879 that the oldest surviving structure, Price Memorial Hall, was constructed upon the former site of the Dahlonega Mint.[10] Today the gold-leafed steeple of the Price Memorial Hall building remains one of the most striking features of the UNG skyline. Much of the campus has been developed around the The William J. Livsey Drill Field, more commonly known as simply "the Drill Field". Dahlonega is located approximately an hour's drive from downtown Atlanta (66 miles (106 km) away), an hour and half drive from downtown Athens (60 miles (97 km) away), a two hours and fifteen minutes drive from Chattanooga, Tennessee (109 miles (175 km) away), and an approximately two hours and twenty minutes drive from Greenville, South Carolina (127 miles (204 km) away).

A panoramic view of UNG's Dahlonega Campus, showing Rogers Hall, Price Memorial Hall, Nix Fine Arts Center, Barnes Hall, Dunlap Hall, the General William J. "Lipp" Livsey ROTC Drill Field, and Lewis Residence Hall.

Gainesville Campus[edit]

Until it was consolidated with North Georgia College & State University in 2013, UNG's Gainesville campus was the location of Gainesville State College. Now known as the "Gainesville campus," it is located adjacent to Lanier Technical College's campus within the city limits of Oakwood. It has retained its association with Gainesville, since the school was originally founded and located in that city.[11] Because of its close proximity to Interstate 985 and Georgia State Route 53, it is conveniently accessible for much of Hall County.

Cumming Campus[edit]

In 2012, an academic facility in Cumming, GA was opened on GA 400. The goal of the Cumming campus is to eventually offer a range of programs.[12] The intention of the non-residential campus is to address capacity concerns for the University of North Georgia. The Cumming campus also provides higher education to an area of the state that was previously "underserved".[13]

Oconee Campus[edit]

The Oconee Campus was established in 1964, originally as a part of Gainesville State College.[citation needed] Oconee is a non-residential campus primarily serving students in the Athens and Watkinsville area. The campus is easily accessible from US-441 and the University of North Georgia has recently announced plans to expand the campus to accommodate the growing class sizes.[14]

Blue Ridge Campus[edit]

On August 13, 2015, UNG opened a new campus in Blue Ridge, GA.[15] The purpose of the Blue Ridge Campus is to offer dual-enrollment options for high school students, classes for first-time freshmen, classes for adult learners, and continuing and professional education programs.[16] The students on this campus can also take classes via eCore, an online platform through which they can complete the first two years of their degree.


The University of North Georgia is a public co-educational institution that operates on a semester term schedule.[2] Incoming freshmen at UNG have the third highest high school grade point average in the state university system, following the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech.[17]

University of North Georgia Honors Program[edit]

Distinctive to UNG’s program, 40% of the students in the program study abroad before graduation, 80% graduate in four years, and 95% graduate within five years. The Honors Program at UNG emphasizes leadership and require students to serve in leadership positions within the Honors Program and/or other campus organizations.[18] UNG is a member of the Georgia Collegiate Honors Council, the Southern Regional Honors Council,[19] and the National Collegiate Honors Council.[20]

Honors classes emphasize discussion, analysis, teamwork, independent learning, and an appreciation for the interrelates of knowledge. UNG’s Honors Program classes are discussion-based, emphasizing critical thinking, with smaller class sizes that average between 16-18 students. These classes provide individual faculty attention, promote individual growth, and encourage creativity and innovation among students.[21]

Honors Program students at UNG receive priority registration, smaller classes, access to faculty, and peer research mentors. Students also receive professional networking, leadership, and scholarship opportunities. Students are also given the opportunity to present at state or regional Honors conferences.[22]


For undergraduates the University of North Georgia offers 129 associate and baccalaureate degrees, as well as pre-professional and certificate programs. For graduates the university offers thirteen master's degree programs as well as one doctoral program. As a state-designated leadership institution, UNG is the only university in Georgia to offer a minor in leadership. The school is also a flagship ROTC Center in Chinese. This designation is aimed at helping cadets become proficient in Chinese language and culture.[17] However, due mostly to size, each campus varies significantly in terms of which degree curricula they can accommodate. The Dahlonega campus focuses on Baccalaureate and graduate programs, and is the only one of the four campuses that offers Pre-Professional Programs. A smaller number of baccalaureate programs, most of which are education or business related, are available at the Gainesville Campus, while associate degrees are offered at both the Gainesville and Oconee campuses. As of Fall 2014, Gainesville campus is now offering a bachelor's degree in Communication and offering three concentrations in Film and Digital Media, Multimedia Journalism, and Organizational Leadership.

Student life[edit]

The University of North Georgia has 14,510 undergraduate students with gender distribution of 45% male and 55% female. Student life at UNG varies between campuses due to the differences in student housing accommodation of the two primary campuses in Dahlonega and Gainesville. Out of the 5,541 undergraduate students attending the Dahlonega campus, 36% live in college-owned housing. Unlike the Gainesville campus, which offers no student housing, the Dahlonega campus has a permanent residing student body of roughly 2,000 throughout most of the fall and spring semesters.[2][23]

Approximately 32% of students at the Gainesville and Oconee campuses are from the counties in which the campus are located (Hall and Oconee counties). The Gainesville and Oconee campuses are located on the outskirts of the city of Gainesville and the city of Watkinsville, respectively. 29% of students at the Gainesville campus are part-time, 'non-traditional' (23 years of age or greater).[24]

Student organizations[edit]

The University of North Georgia has several clubs and organizations on the Dahlonega, Gainesville, and Oconee campuses that students may join. Overall, there are more than 200 student organizations across the University of North Georgia campuses.[25] Each campus has organizations for various interests, but there is currently no information available about student organizations on the Cumming campus.[26] The University of North Georgia uses the website, OrgSync, to connect students with organizations.

Greek life[edit]

As of 2011, 13% of male students and 17% of female students were members of fraternities and sororities.[2] The two councils that govern the Greek community at the school are the Interfraternity Council (males) and the Panhellenic Council (females). The school is home to seven national fraternities, five national sororities, and one local fraternity. Alpha Phi Alpha, a National Pan-Hellenic Council fraternity, has a charter at the university and is active on all campuses.

Fraternities Sororities


The Brook Pennington Military Leadership Center

The Military Leadership Center was dedicated in 2004 to Brooks Pennington Jr., who was a World War II and Korean War Veteran, as well as a Georgia state Congressman and Senator. The Center accommodates four high-technology classrooms, a conference room, a rifle range, and the Brigade Headquarters.[27]

Because of UNG's status as a leadership institution, it is a participant in the L3 Summit. The Summit is a six-day program during which college and university students from all over Georgia engage in team-building exercises and leadership training sessions for roughly eight hours every day. The program is usually held at some point between the spring and summer semesters.[28]


The North Georgia Arch
  • Arch: The North Georgia Arch is located at the campus entrance near Dahlonega's town square. It was built by the Class of 1951 to commemorate their classmates who died in the Korean War. Tradition holds that freshmen are not to walk through the larger archway. Instead, they are supposed to walk through the smaller adjacent archway.[29]
Memorial Wall
  • Bugle Calls:
    • Reveille is played every morning at 7:00 a.m., at which time cadets and civilians alike stop and face the flag.
    • Retreat/To the Colors is played every afternoon at 5:00 p.m., at which time all outdoor activity on campus ceases, in order to pay respect to the American flag. Cadets stand at attention and salute the flag while civilians stop, remove their hats, face the flag, and place their right hand over their heart.
    • Taps is played every evening at midnight (2:00 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays of open weekends) to indicate the end of the day. Cadets are required to be in their dorms at this time.
  • Drill Field: The Drill Field is located in the heart of the main campus. This field is the parade ground for the UNG Corps of Cadets, and is used for drill and ceremonies. It is also used for recreational activities, such as intramural sports, though the activities of the Corps take precedence. Although the Drill Field is roughly 800 feet (240 m) long and located in at the center of the campus, students are not supposed to walk across it as a shortcut. Instead, they are asked to walk around the encircling sidewalk when traveling from one building to another. On April 18, 2009, the drill field was dedicated to retired General William J. Livsey.[29]
  • Memorial Wall: The Memorial Wall, located in front of the Memorial Hall Gymnasium, was built in 1983 in honor of UNG students and alumni that died while in military service to their country. Students do not enter the area around the wall unless they are stopping to show honor to those listed on the wall. As of 2013 the Memorial lists 174 names that died during WWI, WWII, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, or were lost in combat.
The UNG Retreat Triangle and the sheathed 75mm pack howitzer cannon
  • Retreat Triangle: The triangle is located near the Drill Field, Student Center South, and Dunlap Hall. It holds the original retreat cannon, a 1902 three-inch (75 mm) pack howitzer, which has been fired daily at 5 p.m. for more than 50 years. The cannon was recently restored by the North Georgia Parents Association. Students do not walk on the triangle or tamper with the cannon under any circumstances.

Center for Global Engagement[edit]

The Center for Global Engagement (CGE) facilitates international and cross-cultural experiences for students faculty, staff and the greater community in order to better integrate the University of North Georgia into the globalized world.[30]

The Center for Global Engagement (CGE) is the University of North Georgia's connection to the world. The CGE is home to International Student and Scholar Services, Study Abroad Services, the Federal Service Language Academy, Military International Programs, International Internships, and International Partnerships. All these sectors operate with the focus of providing international learning opportunities to the UNG students and faculty who desire to enhance their cross-cultural perspectives and global understanding.[31]

These programs confirm the CGE mission of facilitating international and cross-cultural experiences for students, faculty, staff, and the greater community in order to better integrate the University of North Georgia into the globalized world.

  • Study Abroad: Studying abroad is a great way to obtain personal and intellectual growth, career inspiration, work experience, language acquisition, and intercultural understanding. Study abroad changes lives, and the work of the CGE is guided by the commitment to promoting access to study abroad opportunities for UNG's growing and diverse population of students. The CGE strives to provide outreach, service, and support to students considering studying abroad. The CGE’s study abroad advisors can assist students in finding the perfect study abroad program for your personal and/or career aspirations. The CGE offers access to more than 70 programs around the world.
  • International Student and Scholar Services: The CGE assists international students, scholars, and faculty with transitioning from their home country to the United States. With help from the CGE, UNG hosts over 100 international students from more than 30 countries. The CGE staff is composed of experienced educators who have a sound understanding of various global issues, trends, and educational systems, as well as possessing expertise in immigration regulations that affect one's entry and stay in the United States. They are trained and experienced in cross-cultural counseling and U.S. immigration regulations. The services include advisement, counseling, and information on the admissions processes such as immigration, academic issues, and even personal issues.
  • Military International Programs: The University of North Georgia (UNG) has partnered with US Army Cadet Command to send Cadets from schools throughout the United States to a foreign country. This led to the creation of the Cadet English Language Training Team (CELTT). Its purpose is to arrange the travel of cadets overseas to assist in teaching English to foreign military counterparts. The long-term goal of this program is to establish a service learning program that can be replicated in other regions and nations in each Unified Combatant Command Area of Responsibility. CELTT prepares future officers for effective service across the spectrum of conflict in various regions of the world.
  • Federal Service Language Academy: The FSLA is a summer program for high school students who are interested in federal service careers and strategic foreign languages. Students may choose to take Arabic, Chinese, Russian, Korean, German, or Portuguese. Once on campus, students hear from speakers from agencies such as the DEA, FBI, State Department, and Peace Corps. After the three-week program, students may earn high school credit if approved by their high school.
  • International Partnerships: To meet the University of North Georgia’s mission of preparing students for a global society, the Center for Global Engagement has established relationships with a growing number of outstanding universities worldwide. Some of the programs are only in the development phase, but others are mature and constantly growing and evolving. These relationships usually involve student and faculty exchanges, research opportunities, international internships, and other collaborative possibilities.
  • International Internships: International internships can offer the thrill of an international experience combined with the real-world practice sought after by employers. International internships can provide students with advanced foreign language skills, intercultural skills, global experience and perspectives, job knowledge and skills, and independence and confidence. Once a student the university has chosen an international internship, the CGE staff can assist the student with preparing for an international experience.[32]


UNG Nighthawks logo

Following the establishment of The University of North Georgia in 2013, the school's athletic teams were nicknamed the "Nighthawks." UNG's athletics teams compete in the Peach Belt Conference as part of the NCAA Division II classification.[33] But prior to joining NCAA Division II, North Georgia (formerly known as NGC&SU) formerly competed in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Southern States Athletic Conference (SSAC) from 1999 to 2005. Margaret Poitevint, Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics & Computer Science, is the NCAA designated Faculty Athletics Representative. Men's sports include: baseball, basketball, golf, rifle, soccer, and tennis. Women's athletics include: basketball, cheerleading, cross country, golf, rifle, soccer, softball, and tennis.[34]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Rogers, Edie (2014-09-22). "Enrollment hits record 16,508 students" (url). University System of Georgia website. University of North Georgia. Retrieved 2015-08-11. 
  2. ^ a b c d "US News College rankings: North Georgia College & State University". US News World Report. Retrieved 6 January 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c "UNG Quick Facts". UNG Institutional Effectiveness. University of North Georgia. Retrieved 12 August 2015. 
  4. ^ a b SACS approves consolidation plans. 'GSC NGCSU Consolidation Site. Last accessed 2013-01-07.
  5. ^ Regents OK college mergers. Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Last accessed 2012-01-10.
  6. ^ "Regents Approve New College Names for Mergers". Athens Banner-Herald. May 8, 2012. Retrieved May 8, 2012. 
  7. ^ Roberts, William Pittman:"Georgia’s Best Kept Secret: A History of North Georgia College" Library of Congress, 1998.
  8. ^ "North Georgia College and State University" (url). U.S. News Website. U.S. News. 2011. Retrieved 2013-03-02. 
  9. ^ "Guide to Student Consumer Information Fall 2011 - Spring 2012" (url). Gainesville State College Website. Gainesville State College. 2012. Retrieved 2013-03-02. 
  10. ^ Roberts, William Pittman (1998). Georgia's Best Kept Secret: A History of North Georgia College. Dahlonega, Ga: Alumni Association of North Georgia College. 
  11. ^ "History of GSC" (url). Gainesville State College website. Gainesville State College. Retrieved 2013-03-11. 
  12. ^ "Page not found". 
  13. ^ "North Georgia, Gainesville State to Open Instructional Facility in Cumming". Cottrell MBA
  14. ^ "UNG Unveiling". Raimondi, Chris. Vanguard. 10 January 2013.
  15. ^ "UNG opens Blue Ridge Campus". University of North Georgia. Retrieved 2015-11-12. 
  16. ^ "Blue Ridge Campus". Retrieved 2015-11-12. 
  17. ^ a b "Campus Information: Quick facts". University of North Georgia College & State University. University of North Georgia. Retrieved 26 April 2013. 
  18. ^ "Honors Program Leadership". Retrieved 2015-11-11. 
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^ "UNG Honors Program". Retrieved 2015-11-11. 
  22. ^ "Program Benefits". Retrieved 2015-11-11. 
  23. ^ "Gainesville State College". College Prowler. Retrieved March 11, 2013. 
  24. ^ "Gainesville State College: Fast Facts (Fall Semester 2011)" (PDF). Gainesville State College website. Gainesville State College. Retrieved 2013-03-15. 
  25. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions." FAQs. University of North Georgia, n.d. Web. 16 June 2014.
  26. ^ "Student Organizations." Student Organizations. University of North Georgia, n.d. Web. 16 June 2014.
  27. ^ "Brook Pennington Jr. Military Leadership Center". The Corps of Cadets. University of North Georgia. Retrieved 1 May 2013. 
  28. ^ "The L3 Summit: Leaving a Legacy of Leadership". University of North Georgia. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  29. ^ a b "Visiting Campus". University of North Georgia website. University of North Georgia. Retrieved April 2, 2013. 
  30. ^ "Center for Global Engagement". 
  31. ^ Center for Global Engagement. University of North Georgia, n.d. Web. 11 Nov. 2014.
  32. ^ Dowell, Rhonda. "FW: UNG Wikipedia – CGE." Message to the authors. 6 Nov. 2014. E-mail.
  33. ^ "Peach Belt Conference". PBC. Retrieved 2013-03-14. 
  34. ^ "Saint's Sports". North Georgia. Retrieved 2013-03-14. 

External links[edit]