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UNC School of Social Work Ambassadors

The Student Ambassador Program gives prospective students the opportunity to learn more about the School of Social Work and UNC from the experiences of current students.

Feel free to visit the Student Ambassadors' blog for their personal insights.

Full-Time Program:

Jonathan Bell

Jonathan Bell
(2nd year – Full-Time)

Erica Bluford

Erica Bluford
(2nd Year – Full-Time)

Concentration: Direct Practice / Primeca

Hometown: Greensboro, NC

Areas of Interest: LGBTQ well-being and supporting sexual/gender minorities from faith backgrounds, Adult mental health treatment, substance use counseling, integrated health care, HIV care coordination and advocacy, and family and marriage family.

Field Placement: UNC School of Medicine Infectious Disease CLinicBD

Interesting Fact: I love to run and have had the opportunity to run two marathons!                                 

Concentration: Direct Practice

Hometown: Mebane, NC

Areas of Interest: Criminal justice reform; the intersection of spirituality, psychotherapy, and the law; and health of Black families.  

Field Placement: Center for Child and Family Health, Early Head Start

Interesting Fact: I am a licensed minister, law student, and social worker with hopes of taking over the world! Also, I will be a Triple Tar Heel by the time I graduate...can't get enough of this place lol.

Sophia Durant Sophia Durant
(3rd Year – MSW/MPH dual degree student)

Concentration: Community Management and Policy Practice

Hometown: Lexington, MA

Areas of Interest: Trauma-informed sexual health education implementation and evaluation, nonprofit management and leadership, gender equality within healthcare access. 

Field Placement: NARAL Pro-Choice NC

Interesting Fact: After spending 4 years living in Maine, I actually enjoy swimming in cold ocean water!


Sabrina Longley Sabrina Longley
(2nd Year – Full-Time)
Josie Mueller Josie Mueller
(2nd Year – Full Time)

Concentration: Direct Practice

Hometown: Chapel HIll, NC   

Areas of Interest: Art Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, group work with children and adolescents with developmental disabilities (specifically autistic children and adolescents), anti-stigma work especially in communities of color.

Field Placement: Art Therapy Institute

Interesting Fact: I enjoy doing pottery, playing videogames, and teasing my cat Egg with a laser pointer.                                  

Concentration: Community Management and Policy Practice

Hometown: Martinez, CA

Areas of Interest: Equity & access in higher education, education policy, justice system reform, restorative justice.

Field Placement: Apex High School, Campus Y

Interesting Fact: I love thrifting! Almost all of my decorations, household gadgets, furniture, and clothes were thrifted.

Farrell O'quinn

Farrell O'quinn
(2nd Year – Full Time)

Jillian Riley Jillian Riley
(2nd Year – Full Time)

Concentration: Community, Management, and Policy Practice

Hometown: Charlotte, NC  

Areas of Interest: Educational equity, Affordable housing, the intersection between mental health and physical health, Social work and sport, social and economic determinants of health.

Field Placement: TBD

Interesting Fact: In my twenties and early thirties I played semi-professional soccer during the summers where I was fortunate to play in matches in six different countries throughout the years.

Concentration: Community, Management, and Policy Practice; minor in Public Policy

Hometown: Norman, OK  

Areas of Interest: Local and state government, lobbyist, environmental justice, policy analyst, and community organizer.

Field Placement: NC Department of Public Safety, Juvenile Justice Division

Interesting Fact: I'm scuba certified and have explored the underwater coves of Utila, an island off the coast of Honduras, which is the 2nd largest coral reef in the world.

Advanced Standing:

Sarah Beth Bailes Sarah Beth Bailes
(Advanced Standing)
Seth Edwards Seth Edwards
(Advanced Standing)

Concentration: Direct Practice

Hometown: Knoxville, TN

Areas of Interest: Adolescent and young adult mental health, specifically within a residential treatment setting.

Field Placement: TBD

Interesting Fact: I’ve never had soda!

Concentration: Direct Practice

Hometown: Pine Hall, NC

Areas of Interest: Adult and older adult mental health/substance use, aging, death, and caregiver support.

Field Placement: TBD

Interesting Fact: I am a lover of house plants! I find tending to plants to be very therapeutic and hope to one day develop an intervention using plants.                                                

Nikki Moore Nikki Moore
(Advanced Standing)
Corey Myrick Corey Myrick
(Advanced Standing)

Concentration: Direct Practice

Hometown: Richmond, VA

Areas of Interest: The intersections of holistic approaches, therapeutic expressive arts and mindful approaches. Also, adolescent mental health, mental health among Black individuals, and anti-racist policies and practices.

Field Placement: TBD 

Interesting Fact: I've named all my pets after visual artists!

Concentration: Direct Practice
Hometown: Asheville, NC
Areas of Interest: School social work and school counseling, anti-racist policies/education, LGBTQ youth mental health, educational equity, and arts as a tool for healing and advocacy.
Field Placement: TBD 
Interesting Fact: Last time I counted I had over 100 houseplants. Also, I enjoy film photography and hope to one day publish a book of my photos.

3-year Chapel Hill Program:

Yuri Alston Yuridiana Alston
(2nd year - Chapel Hill Program)
Kiva Jordan Kiva Jordan
(Final year – Chapel Hill Program)

Concentration: Community, Management, and Policy Practice

Hometown: Chapel Hill, NC (born in Guanajuato, Mexico; moved to Chapel Hill when I was 4)

Areas of Interest: Access to higher education for minority students, first-generation advocacy, immigrants and refugees, mental health access for marginalized populations, generational trauma, social justice advocacy, prison reform.

Field Placement: Summer Block Placement

Interesting Fact: I am a first generation college-graduate and the first person in my entire lineage to pursue a master degree.  I enjoy painting and reading.

Concentration: Direct Practice
Hometown: Greensboro, NC
Areas of Interest: Clinical practice, social justice, poverty and inequality impacting communities of color.
Field Placement: Duke High Risk Obstetrics Clinic
Interesting Fact: I still hold the record for the track and field 200 meter dash at my local high school in High Point, NC.


3-Year Winston-Salem Program:

Anne Gladstone Anne Gladstone
(2nd year – Winston Salem  Program) 
Diana Baker Diana Baker
(Final year – Winston Salem Program)

Concentration: Community, Management, and Policy Practice

Hometown: Winston-Salem, NC

Areas of Interest: Bridging the resource gap between rural and urban communities in North Carolina. Assessing child welfare protocol across the state and researching ways to improve outcomes for families.

Field Placement: Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools

Interesting Fact: I ate a tarantula while living in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. It was super gross!

Concentration: Community, Management, and Policy Practice

Hometown: Winston-Salem, NC

Areas of Interest: Aging and disabled population, Medicaid populations, veterans.

Field Placement: Senior Services, Inc.

Interesting Fact: Interestingly I am afraid of ALL animals.  I am a mother of two teenagers and I love to travel!.


Contact Ben Balderas, Assistant Director of Admissions, Recruitment & Financial Aid, at or 919-843-6284, should you have any additional questions or concerns.