Fourteen chancellors have led NC State since its founding in 1887. Under the leadership of Dr. Randy Woodson, North Carolina’s largest university has bolstered its reputation as a pre-eminent research enterprise.

Chancellor WoodsonDr. Randy Woodson, the 14th chancellor of North Carolina State University, is a nationally recognized scholar and academic leader and oversees the largest university in North Carolina with more than 34,000 students and a budget of $1.4 billion. Under his leadership, NC State has built upon its reputation as a preeminent research institution and has witnessed many transformative changes – The opening of the James B. Hunt Jr. Library on Centennial Campus, the launch of the College of Sciences and the completion of the Lonnie Poole Golf Course.

Even in the face of unprecedented financial challenges, these advances were made possible thanks to Woodson's Strategic Plan, which aligned the university for greater effectiveness, efficiency and most importantly, greater student success.

As the landscape of funding for public universities continues to change, NC State consistently ranks in the Top 5 best values among public universities in the U.S., according to publications like the Wall Street Journal and the Princeton Review.

Chancellor Woodson has extensive experience as a member of university faculty and administration with a reputation for consensus building throughout his 30 year career in higher education. He came to NC State from Purdue University, where he most recently served as Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs.

Dr. Woodson is an internationally renowned plant molecular biologist specializing in reproductive processes in agricultural crops. He earned his undergraduate degree in Horticulture from the University of Arkansas and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Plant Physiology from Cornell University.

Randy and Susan Woodson have three adult children.

Full Biography

Extraordinary Students, Faculty and Staff

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff,

As a top-tier research university, one of the many outstanding opportunities that NC State offers students is the ability to engage in hands-on research throughout their academic careers.

The many examples of exciting discovery happening across campus every day is one of the key reasons we are the “Think and Do” university. For instance, the undergraduate students in Alice Lee’s Microbiology 360 course recently tested soil to see if they could isolate microbes to produce antibiotics, and then educated others about the problem of antibiotic resistance. They captured their research and its impact in “Crowdsourcing Antibiotics,” which won first place in the CDC and Small World Initiative’s “Do Something about Antibiotics Challenge.”

I am also pleased to share that Christopher Cooper, a senior majoring in chemical engineering and economics, has been awarded the prestigious 2017 Churchill Scholarship. His current research looks at ways to create soft electronic devices, such as liquid-metal fibers, that can be used as sensors. This is the second consecutive year NC State has had Churchill scholar.

Research doesn’t need to win awards to have significant impact, though.  Lisa Johnson, a PhD student, is researching farm-level food losses and working to reduce them. She found that at least 20.2 million pounds of edible crops in United States are wasted ever year, and she’s collaborating with the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering to create a low-tech harvest aid to help farmers retrieve the last portion of produce out of their fields. This has a real impact for family-owned farms, the larger agricultural industry, and the grand challenge of food insecurity.

Academic discovery such as this would not be possible without exceptional faculty dedicated to scholarship, teaching and outreach. Our faculty’s work is far-ranging. Mary Haskett is conducting life-changing research on the mental health needs of children experiencing homelessness. Across campus, Afsaneh Rabiei is working on composite metal foams that can shield against X-rays, gamma rays and neutron radiation – and turn bullets into dust.

Our faculty’s work is recognized nationally and internationally. Jay Narayan and Paul Turinsky will be inducted into the National Academy of Engineering on October 8, 2017, bringing NC State’s membership in the National Academies to twenty-five. Three College of Engineering faculty members are being named fellows by the National Academy of Inventors and will be inducted on April 6, 2017: B. Jayant Baliga, Ruben Carbonell, and Frances S. Ligler. NC State now has seven current NAI Fellows. Jere Confrey has been named a 2017 American Educational Research Association Fellow, and she is the first faculty member at NC State to receive this honor. Rodolphe Barrangou will receive the 2017 National Academy of Sciences Award in Molecular Biology for his work in genome engineering. We are so proud of these accomplishments, and there are so many more I could mention. We truly have a wealth of resources in our faculty and their groundbreaking research.

Our outstanding students, faculty and staff enable NC State to Think and Do the Extraordinary. I hope, like me, you are proud to be part of this great university community – one that daily makes our region, our state, and our world a better place.

Thank you,

Randy Woodson