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A fall day with the fountains running in the reflecting pool in front of Thomas Cooper Library.

South Carolina at a Glance

With thriving academic and research excellence and a lively, welcoming student experience, the University of South Carolina brings the opportunities of higher education to new generations.

South Carolina's unrivaled college experience has been sought by students, faculty and academic researchers for more than 200 years. Founded in 1801, the university is located in Columbia, the capital of South Carolina. 

The University of South Carolina System, led by President Michael Amiridis who is serving as the university's 30th president, and has eight campuses in 20 locations that together serve more than 52,000 students. 

Nation's Leading First-Year Experience

As early as their first hours on campus, students can access programs and opportunities designed to help them reach greater levels of personal and academic success. That’s one reason U.S. News and World Report recognized South Carolina as the nation’s leader in first-year experience for students among public universities.

Experience South Carolina
Student in garnet shirts gather with one raising her arms in victory.

350+ Degree Programs

South Carolina is home to hundreds of degrees, many of which have earned national distinctions. Along with traditional academic degrees from bachelor’s to doctorate, academic pathways can be tailored to plans or interests with accelerated and combination degree programs, academic specializations and professional certificates.

Majors and Degrees
UofSC stamp with text 60 nationally ranked academic programs.

A Strong Community

The university is a major center for global research drawing students from around the world while also making higher education more accessible for South Carolinians.

Fall 2022 Enrollment
35,590 Total Students
27,280 Undergraduate Students
6,466 Graduate Students 
1,844 Professional Students

2021-2022 Degrees Awarded
9,340 Total Degrees
1 Associate Degree
6,355 Baccalaureate Degrees
2,485 Graduate Degrees
499 Professional Degrees

Students smiling as they are walking to class on a beautiful sunny day.
Student smiling at the camera holding up peace signs.
UofSC stamp with text UofSC ranks in the top 10% for African American graduation rate in public universities..

Strengthened by Diversity

Institutional excellence demands a level playing field. Diversity-focused programs and organizations help build a more equitable campus climate that supports more members of our campus community. The efforts reverberate from daily life to South Carolina's African American graduation rate being in the top 10% of public universities. 

Diversity and Inclusion

Carnegie Foundation-recognized Research and Community Engagement

The Carnegie Foundation has recognized the university with top classification — R1 university — for “very high research activity.” In addition, South Carolina is one of few public universities that has also earned Elective Community Engagement Classification, a prestigious designation recognizing universities with strong community relationships. This remarkable level of research enterprise is one reason university researchers attracted $237 million in sponsored awards in 2022 in areas ranging from instruction to academics to public service. 

  • A Leader in Health Sciences

    The University of South Carolina is the state's most comprehensive health sciences teaching and research institution. Nationally recognized programs in medicine, nursing, social work, public health, pharmacy, biochemistry, business, computing and others pair classroom learning with unique health care provider partnerships to create a premier health sciences experience for both undergraduate and graduate students.

    Health Sciences
  • Two researchers working in a lab.
  • Researcher holding a test tube in a lab.
  • Student looking at a colored model of a spine.
Looking through palmetto trees to the Darla Moore School of Business building.

#1 International Business Programs

South Carolina’s international business major, #1 ranked by U.S. News & World Report for 23 straight years, is respected within the global marketplace and the companies that fuel it. The university’s International MBA — a top-three in the nation for over 30 years — is a constant force in a vibrant global market that’s ever-changing.

Nation's Top Public Honors College

For the fifth straight time, the University of South Carolina received the highest rating among public school honors programs in 2020. Within one of the nation’s most prestigious honors programs, students enjoy a learning experience that’s as far-reaching as global scientific research and as intimate as a small liberal arts college.

A group of students sitting on the Historic Horseshoe having class outside on a beautiful fall day.

Nation’s #1 Online Master’s in Nursing

U.S. News and World Report has again rated South Carolina's online nursing program as one of the nation’s best. With outstanding faculty, high graduation rates and expansive student services and technology that support clinical education, our nursing graduates' comprehensive and experiential education makes them sought after within the healthcare workforce.

A Sport Science Leader

South Carolina ranks in the top five Global Ranking of Sport Science Schools and Departments, reaching the top spot four times. Students at all academic levels seek the university's sports-related programs within the College of Education, Arnold School of Public Health and the College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management. South Carolina's deep bench of more than 100 health science programs can transform an interest into a rewarding career.

Athletic trainers with a student with her foot in device.

Economic Impact

University activity is a key contributor to South Carolina’s long-term economic and employment growth. More than simply providing jobs, the university’s activity and alumni are forces equipped to drive generations of opportunity.

  • Grapic with the text: $6.2 billion.

    The university contributes about $6.2 billion to the state economy annually and supports more than 63,000 jobs statewide.

  • Grapic with the text: 1:9 jobs.

    In the Columbia metro region, the university supports 1 in 9 jobs, with a total annual economic impact of an estimated $3.7 billion.

  • Grapic with the text: $25:1 Investment

    Along with $202+ million in annual tax revenue for the state, the university returns $25 to the state’s economy for each $1 invested in higher education.

The University's Mission

The University of South Carolina, one of the nation’s oldest and most comprehensive public universities, is committed to the mission of educating South Carolinians through teaching, research, creative activity and community engagement. Thanks to faithful donations and wise investing, the university’s endowment of $989 million offers a stable resource to grow scholarships and academic programs.

Seeing is Believing

Whether walking through the historic Horseshoe or seeing next generation materials and data driving industry innovation, plan a visit to see all that’s happening now at the University of South Carolina. 

Visit Campus
The front of McKissick Museum with large banners with the University of South Carolina logo and tailfeathers.