12 Best Colleges in North Carolina Near the Beach 2023

Have you ever imagined attending a college near the beach? will you love to study at any of the colleges in North Carolina near the beach?

In this article, you will learn about the colleges in North Carolina near the beach and how to secure a learning spot for yourself in any college of your choice.

North Carolina is known for its diverse educational system, with public schools, private schools, and also charter schools, the state of North Carolina offers a variety of higher education options which includes community colleges, technical colleges, and universities which has a strong tradition of academic excellence with several highly ranked schools and programs.

The state of North Carolina has 58 colleges and it is one of the largest states in the country. it is well acknowledged in the country for its quality provision of vocational and technical education, the public school system is divided into 115 school districts which comprise over 2,500 schools and serves over a million students and more than 100,000 teachers employed.

I know you might be wondering if these colleges in North Carolina near the beach are affordable, the truth is that tuition for colleges and universities varies based on the factors such as the type of institution which can either be private or public, level of study, and residency status (in State or out of State).

On average, public universities/colleges in North Carolina pay lower tuition costs compared to private universities/colleges and the same goes for in-state and out-of-state students, in state students generally pay lower tuition compared to out-of-state students.

List of the 12 Best Colleges in North Carolina Near the Beach

Below are the top colleges in North Carolina near the beach we found after grounded research, check the school websites underneath each school information in other to get more vital pieces of information regarding your query about each school, Read carefully before applying in other to know the courses they offer and the tuition fees applicable to each of the schools provided.

  • Andrews University
  • Southeastern Community College
  • Brunswick Community College
  • Coastal Carolina Community College
  • Meredith College
  • Catawba College
  • The University of North Carolina
  • Pamlico Community College
  • North Carolina State University
  • Carteret Community College
  • University of Mount Olive, New Bern
  • James Sprunt Community College, Kenansville


This is a private university in Laurinburg, North Carolina established in 1958. It is one of the colleges in North Carolina near the beach. with its original campus in Laurinburg, and four additional campuses located in Charlotte, Pinehurst, Charleston, and Columbia.

St. Andrews offers undergraduate programs in the liberal arts and two other graduate programs, MA and an MBA in education, it is one of the most beautiful places to study in North Carolina.

This college does its students with the tools they need to succeed which helps students to excel academically unlike most universities in North Carolina.

There are also online options at St. Andrews for students who are seeking flexible remote schedules and students have the opportunity to choose from 18 majors and 21 minors.

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SCC is a public comprehensive community college that offers over 100 occupational and liberal arts curriculum certificates, diplomas, and degrees.

This college is an hour’s drive from the historic cities of Wilmington and Fayetteville, North Carolina, and the beaches of both North Carolina and South Carolina. The campus is a 251 -acre campus located on the Chadbourn Highway between Whiteville and Chadbourn in southeastern North Carolina.

SCC provides students with accessible educational, cultural, and social opportunities, it is one of the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach.

Southeastern community college is not just among the best colleges near the beach but also one of the colleges in North Carolina that offers early college and technical education to qualify high school students, they offer online classes and different types of academic and support services.

This college since its existence has been improving the lives of Columbus County citizens, businesses, and industry through affordable, accessible, student-centered education and training. They offer pre-baccalaureate programs, applied technical diplomas, and certificates associated with business, health, public service, and engineering technologies.

There are so many educational activities offered at SCC, if you are yet to pick the best college to enroll in, SCC is highly recommended as this college is set to bring out the best in you and every other student that enrolled with them. It is among the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach.

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This college is one of the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach. It is a public community college in Bolivia, North Carolina. Its main campus is in Bolivia with two other two campuses located in Leland and Southport.

If you are interested in gaining traditional college experience, Brunswick could be the right choice for you, the school has a beautiful environment just right on Wrightsville Beach.

Students of Brunswick community college get the opportunity to be successful through the accessible, high-quality, student-centered programs and services that meet the best educational, cultural, and also workforce needs of a diverse community.

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This college is one of the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach, Coastal Carolina Community College offers both undergraduate degrees, graduate degrees, and professional programs.

It is a public community college located in Jacksonville, North Carolina, and a satellite school of the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

Coastal Carolina community college is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award diplomas, associate degrees, certificates, and workforce training.

Over 33 degrees are been offered, including 19 diplomas and 63 certificate options, some of the degrees include a degree in accounting and finance, architectural technology, automotive systems technology, business administration, etc.

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Meredith College is a beautiful college located in Raleigh, North Carolina. This college offers excellent education in a beautiful setting.

This college has been ranked many times as one of the best colleges in North Carolina in terms of quality education, and international relationships.

Over 90 majors, minors, and academic programs are being offered at Meredith, they also offer a wide range of experiential learning opportunities to enrich their student’s academic experience including undergraduate research, study abroad, honors, internships, and community-based learning.

If you are in look for the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach, Meredith College should be among your top pick, especially for international students as there is no form of discrimination at Meredith.

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Catawba is a private, coeducational, residential institution established in 1851. This college offers over 70 academic courses and it is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award both bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

With an average class size of 12 and an 11:1 student-faculty ratio, this college accepts students from 32 U.S. states and 19 foreign countries.

Catawba college is located in Salisbury, North Carolina, United States and it is one of the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach. Graduates of this college find it easy to succeed in their career field due to the quality academic experience this college offers.

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The University of North Carolina can’t be beaten when it comes to academic excellence, this university is one of the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach.

It was established in 1947 as a public research university in Wilmington, North Carolina, United States. They offer 59 majors, 37 master’s degrees, and 6 doctoral degrees.

UNCW has the most attractive campuses in the south, they are dedicated to academics, mentorship, research, and service. and they offer powerful academic experience/excellent education to enhance the quality of life.

For those that wish to study at UNCW but can’t come to campus because of distance or the nature of work, this university also offers a variety of undergraduate degrees, graduate degrees, and certificates and licensures, all the online degrees awarded are also same as on-campus degrees. Some of the undergraduate degrees include;

  • A degree in clinical research
  • A degree in criminology
  • A degree in elementary education
  • A degree in interdisciplinary studies
  • A degree in international studies and others.

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Pamlico Community College is among the Colleges in North Carolina near the beach, this college is a non-discriminating college in its educational programs, activities, admissions, age, sex, race, color, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or religion.

PCC has helped many students discover and grow in their career paths to date, they are fully accredited. They currently offer varied academic programs, continuing education programs, and cultural enrichment programs.

Pamlico Community College came into existence in 1962, some of the academic programs they offer include; Accounting and Finance, Associate in Arts, Associate in General Education, Associate in Science, Business Administration, Cosmetology, Medical Assisting, Dental Laboratory Technology, etc.

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NC State University is also among the colleges in North Carolina near the beach. This college focuses on solving real-world problems in other to make a difference in the world

The college has research experts that are in charge of working with students across every discipline to achieve the best results and their graduates are usually successful in their careers due to the quality academic experience NC State University offer.

This college campus is full of legendary landmarks, and beautiful outdoor spaces, it is a place to live, learn and thrive as a student without any form of discrimination.

Over 100 undergraduate majors and more than 200 master’s and doctoral programs are been offered at NC State University which prepare students for successful careers and meaningful lives.

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This c community is one of the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach that offers a wealth of educational opportunities for students in North Carolina.

This college along with its diverse student population creates a warm and welcoming atmosphere that is hard to match but one of the best things about this college is its commitment to student success. Both the faculty and staff are very much dedicated to providing students with the tool they need to succeed in their academics which has resulted in high graduation rates and many successful alumni.

Carteret Community College has also committed to hands-on learning, the college offers numerous programs such as internships, co-op programs, and service learning opportunities that allow students to gain real-world experience.

Carteret is a beautiful, welcoming, and affordable institution, it is a good and affordable option for those seeking higher education, you can actually save money while still receiving a high-quality education at Carteret Community College.

Carteret community college is located in Bogue Sound, North Carolina. It was founded in 1963, it is an accredited college that offers more than 90 associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates that prepare students for immediate entrance into the workforce or university transfer.

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The University of Mount Olive is one of the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach, this university is a private faith-based university that offers a beautiful and compelling college experience for its students.

UMO has a stunning campus college and is renowned for its exceptional academic programs with over 50 majors and minors. Students of UMO easily reach their full potential both inside and outside the classroom due to the wide range of opportunities made available for them to pursue their dreams, and passions and also explore new interests.

The University of Mount Olive in New Bern, North Carolina, is a beautiful and convincing choice for anyone looking for a well-rounded, fulfilling college experience.

With its stunning campus, exceptional academic programs, and tight-knit community, students will find that UMO offers the perfect combination of challenge and support to help them reach their goals and lead fulfilling lives.

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James Sprunt Community College in Kenansville, North Carolina is a hidden gem that offers a wealth of opportunities for students looking for an affordable, accessible, and high-quality education. With a commitment to student success and a supportive community, JSCC is a place where students can grow, learn, and thrive.

One of the standout features of JSCC is its exceptional academic programs. With over 50 degree and certificate programs, students have the opportunity to explore their interests, gain new skills, and prepare for a successful future.

Whether you’re interested in pursuing a career in a traditional field like healthcare, business, or education, or exploring a more unique path like renewable energy, horticulture, or animal science, JSCC has something to offer. It is among the best colleges in North Caro.

In addition to its strong academic programs, JSCC is also a welcoming and supportive community. The college’s small size and tight-knit atmosphere create an environment where students feel valued and respected, and where they can form close relationships with their peers and instructors.

This supportive community extends beyond the classroom as well, with numerous opportunities for students to get involved in clubs, organizations, and service projects that allow them to give back to their community and build new skills.

SCC also boasts cutting-edge technology and facilities that allow students to get hands-on experience in their chosen field of study. Whether it’s in state-of-the-art labs, modern classrooms, or well-equipped libraries, students have access to the tools and resources they need to succeed.

Additionally, JSCC is proud to have one of the most affordable tuitions in the state, making it accessible for all students to receive a quality education without breaking the bank. It is among the best colleges in North Carolina near the beach.

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Some Frequently Asked Questions on Colleges in North Carolina near the beach

What are the top universities near Wilmington, NC?

Some of the universities near Wilmington, NC include

1. University of North Carolina at Wilmington (UNCW)
2. Cape Fear Community College (CFCC)
3. Miller Motte College
4. East Carolina University (ECU)
5. North Carolina State University at Wilmington (NC State Wilmington.

what are the top schools near the outer banks of North Carolina?

Top 15 best schools near the outer banks of North Carolina

1. Manteo High School (Manteo)
2. First Flight High School
3. Nags Head Elementary School
4. Cape Hatteras Secondary School
5. Kitty Hawk Elementary School
6. Hatteras Elementary School
7. Roanoke Island Charter School
8. Ocracoke School
9. Southern Shores Elementary School
10. Pauline Lewis Hayman Elementary School
11. Manteo Middle School
12. Wanchese Christian Academy
13. Currituck County High School
14. Harbinger Christian Academy
15. First Flight Middle School.

what are the best colleges for coastal studies in north Carolina?

1. Duke University
2. East Carolina University
3. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
4. North Carolina State University
5. University of North Carolina Wilmington

What colleges are located near Morehead City, North Carolina?

1. East Carolina University
2. Carteret Community College
Coastal Carolina Community College

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