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Carolina Story: Virtual Museum of University History

Long registration line, 1946

After North Carolina began enlarging its high school system at the beginning of the twentieth century, university enrollment grew rapidly. The student body grew from three hundred students during the 1890s to about one thousand at the end of World War I. By 1930, the university had approximately three thousand students. After World War II, the G.I. Bill brought veterans to campus in large numbers and raised the enrollment to around 7,600 in 1947. Enrollment during the 1950s continued to increase but at a much slower pace: by the fall of 1960, the total number of students had only increased by one thousand to 8,600. The number of female students reached 1,000 by 1946 and 1,800 by 1960, at which time women made up 21% of the student body.