HHP Student Spotlight: Meghan Stello

Name: Meghan Stello  

Graduation Year: May 2023  

Why did you choose ECU? 

I grew up in an alumni household, as my mother received her teaching degree here at ECU, so I was no stranger to purple and gold. This led me to always dream about attending college at ECU, just like my mom. I was absolutely sure ECU would be my next home when I was 15 and went on my first college tour on a high school field trip. The individuals and students I met that day left such a positive impression, that I could tell how much ECU valued their students and their different needs to ensure their educational experience is positive and sets them up for future success.  

Tell us why you want to pursue a career in Social Work?  

I knew I wanted to become a social worker after learning about all of the different challenges and hardships my peers in high school were experiencing that no one knew about. I want to become a social worker to advocate for others and help improve the social welfare systems. 

Are you pursuing any minors/certificates in addition to your degree? 

I am not pursuing any minors or certificates in addition to receiving my master’s degree. However, I am the School of Social Work Office of Field Education graduate assistant for the Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 semesters.  

What is your favorite aspect/feature about your degree/Social Work?  

I would say one of my favorite things about social work while completing my BSW and receiving my MSW is learning about the aspects that shape and build communities within society. My social work courses have taught me a variety of different social work theories that explain the different perspectives individuals and populations experience based on societal norms and social constructs.  

Tell us about your community involvement? 

I have been involved in Pitt County’s community as well as the community within ECU’s campus. During my BSW internship, I interned at Parents for Public Schools of Pitt County. With this internship, I attended public school board meetings, co-facilitated community conversations for community members, and organized and gave parents and community members tours of Pitt County schools. I was also a part of ECU’s Greek life community with my sorority, Delta Zeta, and the different philanthropy events we held.  

How do you hope to make a difference?  

I hope to make a difference one day after completing my MSW and then attending law school to hopefully become a policymaker to improve the lives of individuals who make up society and help make it function. As one of the professors said, “We are all really just one paycheck away from being homeless,” which is something so many individuals are not aware of or understand. Also, not everyone realizes how policies can help take some of those hardships away and provide support to help get an individual back on their feet.  

What advice do you have for students who wish to pursue a BSW or MSW degree?  

One piece of advice I have for students who want to pursue a BSW or MSW degree is never give up; the knowledge you will gain from your social work courses will open your eyes to so many different perspectives, which will allow you to help change the lives for so many individuals who have no one or have no idea where or who to ask for help. Everyone experiences challenges and hardships, some more major and life-altering for some, because no one gets a choice in the environment in which they are raised.  

Anything else you’d like to share?  

One thing about me is that I have always been passionate about helping others. I love hearing from individuals in our community and learning about the different experiences they have had. As everyone has different stories about their lives, I believe it is important for individuals to take the time to get to know others’ stories to give new perspectives and allow us to walk in others’ shoes.