The Nutrition Research Institute (NRI) offers unique learning and work experiences for graduate students in the fields of nutrigenomics and metabolomics. Our research relies, in fact, on the work these students do. But until recently the institute has been short on student housing, creating hardship for those who wished to study and work here. That has changed with the opening of five newly refurbished houses a short walk from the institute and the rest of the North Carolina Research Campus, offering both short- and long-term student housing options.

Finding suitable housing for its visiting students has been an ongoing project since the NRI opened in 2008. But last year, a group of five houses, which previously served as homes for Cannon Mills workers, came up for sale together. UNC Chapel Hill, UNC General Administration, and the state of North Carolina worked with the seller to obtain and rehab the houses to provide modern comforts and accessibility.

One of the houses is fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act Standards for Accessible Design. That house has been dedicated to the Kannapolis Rotary Club for its four-year fundraising effort, the annual Nutrithon of 5K and 8K running competitions and 50K and 100K cycling rides. The Nutrithon raised $63,500, which the Rotary donated to help the NRI make possible its goal of providing convenient, affordable student housing.

Graduate students will begin occupying the houses in time for the fall 2017 semester.