You are involved in the Federal Work-Study program here at ECU. What’s that experience like?
The Federal Work-Study program provides qualified students with employment opportunities on- or off-campus. It is administered by the Office of Student Employment, and while it is not the university’s job, per se, to find employment for students, in my experience, they do go out of their way to help in that regard. The jobs are typically more flexible in terms of hours, so they are often very amenable to a full-time student’s schedule. I work in a microbiology lab between two to three hours a day, so it’s very manageable for me. Plus my job has really helped me get my foot in the door with biology experience. When professors are looking for someone to help them with a project, they like people to have lab experience.
What is your best ECU memory?
I loved the time I spent in Garrett Hall during my freshman year. I had a great roommate and a lot of friends on the floor. We would talk all the time, play video games, whatever—it was a great atmosphere to be in during the first few months after leaving home. The overall feeling of having everything I wanted and needed within a short walk (or yell, for that matter) is something I will always remember.
Upon graduating, what will you miss the most about ECU?
The freedom of being in college. I don’t mean the “no rules” type of freedom, but rather the type of autonomy that is associated with opportunity. I can’t fight the fear that in the real world your opportunities are vastly limited. Think about it, when we are in college we can do whatever we want—join any club/organization, participate in any recreational athletics, get deep into interesting courses, and so many other things. When graduation comes along, after a degree is attained, freedom gets lost in translation. You spend four years working towards a career of your choice and then for the next 50-some years you’re in the career. I feel a lot of people find this stability boring and end up missing the freedom they had in college to explore without a lot of risk. In other words, you can’t just get up from your cubicle one day and prance onto a farm and say, “Hey I want to learn a little bit about farming.” Why not? Because you will lose your job! But in college, with the freedom to explore, you can decide to leave accounting early one day to sit in on an agricultural history class. That kind of freedom is what I will miss most.