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

Graduation and Student Success

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:

Congratulations to the Class of 2017! More than 5,600 students are graduating this spring. Combined with December graduation, we are awarding more than 10,000 degrees this academic year, setting a new record for NC State.

I am especially proud of our graduation rates since we made enhancing student success the first goal in NC State’s strategic plan, Pathway to the Future. In the past five years, graduation rates and the number of degrees conferred have increased, all while time to degree has decreased. This means that more of our students are graduating and earning degrees, and in less time – resulting in a lower burden of debt for graduates and their families. If you would like to read more about our efforts and progress in this area, see our Five-Year Student Success Report 2011-2016.

The experiential education that these graduates have received while at NC State means that they are ready to solve real-world challenges, whether through joining the workforce, continuing on to graduate school, launching an entrepreneurial venture, serving others, or forging a different path. Our graduates will bring their Think and Do spirit out into the world, and our world will be better for it.

Graduates, I look forward to hearing of your future endeavors and seeing you again as alumni. For the rest of us, I look forward to a productive summer and getting ready for the new academic year. I wish everyone a safe and enjoyable summer.


Randy Woodson