Bound for pediatric nursing
A summer enrichment camp at East Carolina University in 2011 prepared Meghan Boop of Cary to earn top grades in math and science her senior year of high school – academic achievements that positioned her to become an EC Scholar.
“I was in a program at ECU called Summer Ventures where you get chosen based on academic merit in science and math,” she said. “The camps are held at four (UNC campuses) and I was lucky to be placed at ECU. It was hard; we studied six days a week. Then I realized that the professors who were teaching us – who were just great – they were giving their summers, free, to help us.
“And I figured if these people are willing to teach for free during the summer, the ones I would have (in Honors College) must be fantastic.”
Boop, 18, will be one of 20 incoming freshman entering ECU in August as EC Scholars – the most prestigious academic scholarship program the university offers.
It was on a subsequent tour of ECU’s Health Sciences Campus when the Panther Creek High School graduate decided on a career.
“When I saw the medical school and that entire side of campus, I was just very impressed with everything they have to offer the students, the labs and all the new facilities. It was cool to think I could be involved with that in a few years. They talked about the amazing research the students get to be involved with, and I was excited to think I could be a person who could make a difference through research.”
She plans to study nursing, and will likely focus on pediatrics.
Boop played soccer at Panther Creek and was named to the Tri-Nine Second Team All Conference. She received scholarship offers to continue playing for some smaller colleges. She said she was tempted to accept but decided to focus solely on academics. “I probably will go out for club soccer at ECU because I have been playing soccer since I was five and I really enjoy it.”
A member of Panther Creek’s National Honor Society, the Environmental Club and the Varsity Club, Boop volunteers as a tutor for elementary school pupils. “It feels good helping kids that need that extra push academically,” she said. She also has been involved with school blood drives and teacher appreciation events.
She has an older sister who just graduated from Appalachian State and a twin brother who will be attending N.C. State this fall. “I can’t wait ‘til we stomp them in football,” she said.
Boop said she knows it will be hard to make the transition to college life but she’s excited to start the journey. “I just like the campus where you can walk all over. With the downtown so close, it has a big town feel but at ECU it just felt like a family, everyone was so close knit.”
— Steve Tuttle
About EC Scholars
EC Scholars exhibit outstanding academic performance and effective leadership skills.
They have opportunities to contribute to faculty-led research studies, engagement in the community and multiple service activities.
The amount awarded to scholarship recipients is $40,000 ($5,000 per semester for eight continuous semesters). In addition, EC Scholars are provided with a $5,000 stipend to help support their required study abroad experience.
The entering Class of 2016 EC Scholar recipients have completed a rigorous three-tier selection process that includes: meeting the Honors College admissions criteria, having an additional faculty review and completing an on-campus interview. The incoming EC Scholar recipients have an average combined math/verbal SAT score of 1346 and an average unweighted GPA of 3.89.