The annual event is a fundraiser for the organization that that funds scholarships for black students and general scholarship funds for private historically black colleges and universities. It's well known for its slogan seen in TV commercials: "A mind is a terrible thing to waste."
In his speech, Governor Pat McCrory said one of his biggest priorities as he starts his first year in office is connecting commerce with education to combat unemployment statewide.
"Among the African-American population, the unemployment rate is almost at 16 percent," he said.
McCrory said there are job openings, but many applicants are under-qualified. He wants to see more attend college "to learn a skill, to apply for a job, to earn money, and raise a family, and start a new generation."
At the event, ABC11 General Manager Caroline Welch presented UNCF with a check for $5,000.