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Meghan Blackwell

Blackwell encourages current students to hone communication proficiency along with analytical and critical thinking skills.

Finance - Alumni

Some of Meghan Blackwell’s (Finance, ’09) fondest memories from her time at the University of Tennessee occurred during Student Government Association (SGA) elections. Every spring, students form SGA campaigns to win the student vote for president, vice president, student services director and senate positions.

“It is an exciting week of free food, t-shirts and campaigning on the Pedestrian Walkway,” Blackwell recalls. “Campaign week is such a great time to connect with peers and discuss topics that are impacting students.”

Blackwell continues to value connection and communication, both in her professional role as senior employment attorney for Dollar General Corporation and as an alumna of the Haslam College of Business.

“As in-house counsel, a good portion of my day is devoted to meetings and phone calls with other business units to provide legal guidance,” Blackwell says. “I may attend a meeting about a new initiative in which my role is to evaluate any legal risk that may be associated with the new initiative or project.”

Blackwell regularly partners with human resources to provide legal guidance on employment-related issues and to review policies and training to ensure compliance with state and federal laws.

“We are in over 40 states, so part of my job is to stay informed of any changes in state or federal laws and work with the appropriate business units to implement processes to adhere to the new law,” Blackwell says.

For Blackwell, coming from the Volunteer tradition means lending a helping hand and giving back.

“As an alumna, being a Volunteer means giving back to UT and Haslam for continued growth and educational opportunities for students,” she says. “It is about creating a legacy for future generations to share the same level of quality education and pride that I have.”

She stays connected with students, encouraging them to build skills in communication along with analytical and critical thinking skills.

“Communication skills, both written and verbal, are imperative,” Blackwell says. “In today’s virtual environment, emails may be your only form of communication with your clients or other coworkers; therefore, your written communication is your first impression.”

She advises students to communicate a desire to learn early in their careers.

“Raise your hand to be part of a new project or a new team that is outside your comfort zone,” Blackwell says. “These are good opportunities to gain new experience and internal exposure. Leaders take notice of those employees who are always willing to go the extra mile.”

As someone who values communication, Blackwell clearly states her feelings about her alma mater.

“I have an immense amount of pride in being able to say I am a Tennessee Volunteer,” she says.