Brinkley-Lane Scholar: Saline Kulas

A day-in-the-life experience helped Saline Kulas know that East Carolina University was the best fit. Being named a Brinkley-Lane Scholar sealed the decision for the J.H. Rose High School senior from Greenville.

Kulas said shadowing a current student and spending time in the College of Engineering and Technology provided a good opportunity to see what student life would be like and what her experience as an engineering student might be.

“I appreciated the fact that I got to meet with faculty, and they showed interest in meeting with me as well,” Kulas said. “I also learned that I could potentially do some research as a freshman and that was really exciting.”

Kulas, who has been interested in biomedical engineering since sixth grade, will pursue a degree in engineering with a concentration in biomedical engineering.

“I want to specifically dedicate my career to developing new, innovative, user-friendly prosthetics to enhance the quality of life for the people who are using them,” she said.

She will pursue her own ECU experience on a campus she knows well. Her parents, Julie and Tony Kulas, are on faculty in ECU’s College of Health and Human Performance. She teaches public health, and he is interim chair of the kinesiology department.

Kulas said she is excited about the opportunity to be a part of the Brinkley-Lane Scholar family and likes that they’ll always challenge her to reach her full academic and personal potential.

Brinkley-Lane Scholars is the most prestigious undergraduate award program offered at ECU. The four-year merit scholarship recognizes outstanding academic performance, commitment to community engagement and strong leadership skills. Recipients receive a fully funded education, covering the cost of tuition, fees, room and board for both in-state and out-of-state students and unique high impact experiences, as well as the ability to explore the world with a $5,000 study abroad stipend. Scholars benefit from access to an array of leadership opportunities, research with award-winning faculty and a robust alumni network.

Attending ECU also allows Kulas to continue to mentor and participate in GRITS (girls really into STEM), an initiative she started in Greenville. “I enjoy spreading STEM because I enjoyed doing STEM when I was little and getting to do that with other girls is really exciting,” she said.

Kulas has been active in STEM as a member of Pitt Pirates Robotics and at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences A Time for Science in Greenville, where she plans to work over the summer.

She is eager to be involved in STEM-related campus organizations, like the Society of Women Engineers and the Helping Hand Project, a group that creates 3D prosthetics.

This summer she is joining friends on a trip to Iceland. “This will be my first time out of the country, so I’m super excited for that,” she said.

The trip will provide a foundation for the travel abroad experience that is part of the Brinkley-Lane Scholars program. Kulas plans to study at the ECU Tuscany campus in Italy.

“I appreciated the fact that I got to meet with faculty, and they showed interest in meeting with me as well.”

High school: J.H. Rose High School

Intended major: Engineering

Current City: Greenville

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