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Universities and Colleges
Research Facilities
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Higher Education & Research

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Southeastern North Carolina features some of the most outstanding universities and colleges in the state. Dating back to its beginnings, this area was famous not for its tourism, but its prosperous commercial industries. As a result, education and research have played a major role in helping the southern coast continue to grow and expand to meet the needs of local businesses.

Now, as North Carolina's southern coast finds itself thrown in the limelight of popularity, more people are deciding to move here permanently, including many new and exciting industries. Research companies such as PPD and AAI Pharma have made Wilmington their home, as have major corporations such as DuPont and General Electric Company. Higher education, therefore, is working hard to meet the demands of booming industry. 

The University of North Carolina at Wilmington is focusing its academics to connect student learning across four broad themes: information technology, internationalization, natural environment and regional engagement, so students graduate with a sense of civic responsibility and leadership. Cape Fear Community College and Brunswick Community College have added new buildings to meet the needs of their expanding enrollment. 

The research industry also is increasing in importance and size. Not surprisingly, the major emphases of the research performed in the area are in the fields of oceanography, wetland and estuarine studies, marine biomedical and environmental physiology, and marine biotechnology and aquaculture.