"For me, being an EC Scholar is about serving the underserved, and giving back to my community."
Raleigh, North Carolina
Wake Early College of Health and Sciences
Serves others with a passion
Tiana Washington's interests are wide-ranging: from feeding the less fortunate to tutoring elementary and middle school students to participating in student government and pursuing health certifications.
The 18-year-old from Raleigh is a student at Wake Early College of Health and Sciences with dual enrollment at Wake Technical Community College. Washington is one of 20 freshmen entering East Carolina University this fall as an EC Scholar, the most prestigious undergraduate academic scholarship program offered at ECU. In addition, Washington is an alternate for the early assurance program in the Brody School of Medicine.
"I chose ECU because this school has ample opportunity for scholarship as well as enabling its students to build upon their skills through internships and research opportunities that are unparalleled to any other university," said Washington. "It was very challenging for me, because I had been given admission into my dream school, but I simply could not pass up what ECU had given me. I feel as though at East Carolina University, I am seen as an individual person, rather than just a number."
While at ECU, Washington will major in neuroscience. She plans to continue her education through medical school and has a career aspiration of working in pediatric psychiatry.
"Because serving my community is so important to me, I look forward to the community service and leadership projects that I will become a part of," said Washington. "I am excited to meet and interact with new people."
The daughter of Hamiyd and Anjanette Washington, Tiana has a strong work ethic and excels academically. In 2015, she was inducted into the National Honor Society.
She's also historian for the Heath Occupation Students of America and class representative for her Student Government Association.
Among her service roles, Washington has volunteered with the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina, local soup kitchens, the Raleigh Rescue Mission and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. She is CPR- and first aid-certified, certified in vision screening for preschool and elementary school children, and certified in mental health aid. She is a dance coach, a math and reading skills tutor and a counselor at the YMCA, where she will continue to work this summer.
"For me, being an EC Scholar is about serving the underserved and giving back to my community," said Washington. "It also means that I am privileged to have such a close-nit group to help me achieve my goals."
The four-year merit scholarship recognizes outstanding academic performance, commitment to community engagement and strong leadership skills. Recipients receive an Honors College scholarship for four years, along with a stipend for study abroad, for a total value of nearly $62,000.
Though she hasn't decided where she plans to study abroad, she looks forward to gaining new experiences and becoming more knowledgeable about foreign affairs and other cultures.