On February 10, 2012, the committee visited with the leadership teams of the North Carolina State Centennial Campus and UNC North - the Millennium Campus project for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. During the course of these visits, the successful concepts of these campuses were explored. North Carolina State provided a PowerPoint presentation (available at www.centennial.ncsu.edu), which gave an overview of the development of that campus and its "work, live, play environment." The committee appreciated the insights of both of these leadership teams, which uniformly noted that faculty involvement is essential to the success of the development of the Millennial Campus concept. The committee explored the ideas of business incubators on Millennial Campuses. The N.C. State leadership team discussed in detail the need for establishing criteria for the selection of businesses wishing to engage with the university in forming partnerships.
The concept of established criteria to evaluate potential business partnerships with the university was emphasized at the committee's visit to UNC Charlotte-Charlotte Research Institute, which occurred on February 29, 2012. The committee explored its interest in the need to define Western North Carolina’s regional needs and linking those needs to the core assets and strengths of Western Carolina University. The leadership team at UNC Charlotte again emphasized the critical role that faculty members play in developing linkages to external constituents, business partnerships, and economic development organizations. The committee toured buildings on the UNC Charlotte Millennial Campus.
The committee also toured the North Carolina Research Campus located in Kannapolis
and the David H. Murdock Research Institute. During this visit, the committee learned
that the Murdock Research Institute and the North Carolina Research Campus are eager
to explore research and other opportunities with Western Carolina University and other
sister institutions within the UNC system.