Life is changing for thousands of North Carolina college students.
University of North Carolina campuses in Asheville, Wilmington, Greensboro and Charlotte are among the schools which held winter commencement ceremonies on Saturday.
Nearly 1,500 students graduated from UNC-Wilmington. Graduates of UNC-Greensboro heard from exercise psychology professor Jennifer Etnier, the author of a book about mental toughness.
About 3,200 students received their degrees during ceremonies at UNC Charlotte. Participants included a winner of the school's distinguished alumni award, 1976 graduate Greg Davis.
Davis was a 21-year-old high school freshman who was labeled mentally retarded when he dropped out of school in 1972. Four years later, he graduated from UNC Charlotte's Religious Studies program. He went on to earn a master's degree from Duke and later a Ph.D.