by Chris Nealy and Sharon H. Thomas
Project Uplift grants nominated high school students from around the country the opportunity to visit and learn about the university while visiting various departments and schools. Individuals are nominated by their high school counselors and must meet exceptional academic and personal criteria, such as being within the top 25% of their graduating class and having demonstrated leadership skills. These students stay in residence halls, dine in the campus cafeterias, and of course get to experience the extracurricular aspects UNC has to offer by visiting Franklin Street and having nightly social events.
Students with Project Uplift visited the School of Social Work from May 20 – June 10 and had the opportunity to speak with Sharon Thomas, director of recruitment, admissions and financial aid. The attendees also got to meet and ask questions of current SSW students Darrell Coleman, Jr., Megan Key and Chris Nealy.
Project Uplift provides rising students with the chance to explore their academic interests, but also gives programs such as the SSW the opportunity to promote the possibilities of pursuing a social work career. Students in attendance were able to clarify some of the common misconceptions regarding where social workers are employed, what kind of work they do, and the importance of direct and macro practice influence on individuals, communities and large-scale policy development.