June 6, 1944, was a day that changed the course of history.

Massive waves of Allied troops and weaponry came ashore in France, to take on the fierce German occupiers and begin the retaking of Europe. Peace followed in the coming year and, on the home front, our nation would set its sights on post-war opportunities, sparking unprecedented demand for higher education, fueled by the GI Bill of Rights.

Seventy-four years later, UNC Charlotte’s “Pride of Niner Nation Marching Band” traveled to France to perform in the international commemoration of D-Day. Even more than a life-changing trip abroad, the journey brought our students of 2018 the opportunity to touch the history that led to our university. Their experiences became a bridge between the Greatest Generation and the generations to come.  


Share in the history and see and hear the band from Normandy

On June 6, 2018, UNC Charlotte presented a live-stream special, “Origins of Opportunity.” Enjoy coverage of the band’s performances and the exciting reactions and perspectives of our students as they experience the sights and sounds of the historic Normandy coast. The program also features the expertise of one of the University’s historian-experts on World War II, and the thoughts of Holocaust survivor and Professor Emerita Susan Czernyak-Spatz.

Take in the depth of this experience by exploring this web site. Read how the legacies of World War II veterans live today through their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren -- our alumni, faculty and staff, and students.

See how our noble roots as an institution founded as a service to veterans guide our present-day commitment as one of the nation’s top veteran-friendly universities.