The University of North Carolina announced a plan Thursday that would aid former athletes in returning to school to finish their degrees. In June, the NCAA re-opened its investigation of academic irregularities at the university.
UNC’s academics were back in the spotlight recently after former North Carolina basketball star Rashad McCants told ESPN in June that he would’ve been academically ineligible to play during his time there had it not been for the aid the school gave him.
McCants said there was a “paper class” system at UNC, where students were not required to go to class and only had to submit one term paper to receive a grade. McCants said that Tar Heels coach Roy Williams knew about the system. He also said that he made the dean's list in the spring of 2005 despite not attending any of his four classes.
Williams denied McCants' allegations.
The university's press release revealed some details of the Complete Carolina, the program designed to help athletes finish school:
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill today announced the launch of an enhanced degree-completion program that honors former student-athletes' scholarships for life. This program—Complete Carolina—provides financial support for degree completion, as well as academic advising and career counseling, to former student-athletes who return to complete their degrees at any time...
For former student-athletes who withdrew from the University in good academic standing, Complete Carolina will provide financial support commensurate to their scholarship, including tuition, fees, room, board and books. Returning students will also be placed in an enhanced advising program to provide comprehensive academic advising and career planning before, during and after their return to Carolina. Individualized plans for former student-athletes will also be developed to maximize each student's success on campus, similar to the recently implemented MAP (My Academic Plan) program for current student-athletes.
- Program participation is available to scholarship student-athletes who withdrew from the University in good academic standing and meet program requirements.
- Financial support will be provided commensurate to a student's athletics aid during initial enrollment as a student-athlete, including tuition, fees, room, board and books.
- Applications will be accepted beginning Sept. 1, 2014.
- Alex Hampl and Molly Geary