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Sammy Ferris '18 Named a Morehead-Cain Scholar

Samantha “Sammy” Ferris ’18 is the 30th Country Day senior to be offered the prestigious and highly selective Morehead-Cain Scholarship to attend UNC-Chapel Hill. In fact, she is the fifth Country Day recipient in six years.

The oldest, and one of the most prestigious merit scholarships in the country, the Morehead-Cain fully funds all costs associated with undergraduate study at UNC-Chapel Hill for four years, and includes additional programs such as four years of summer enrichment opportunities. Sammy joins an elite group, as evidenced by the fact that just three percent of candidates receive this highly selective scholarship.

“The teachers at Country Day have truly shaped my experiences here, and I owe so much to them. Without Ms. Waldthausen’s zealous love for poetry, Mr. McNish’s penchant to push those around him to expect their best, Mrs. Derby’s willingness to carve time for her students, Mrs. Goodfellow’s personable nature, and the dedication of every teacher I had, I would not be where I am today. The kind, loving, and formative environment that they craft is unquestionably one of the most memorable parts of my high school experience. I will never take for granted how much my Country Day teachers have influenced me.”

Sammy Ferris '18

Sammy joined the Country Day community as a freshman and has made a tremendous impact during her time in Upper School. She is the editor in chief of The Hook, mentors new students through the Bridge Peer Mentoring Program, has performed in school musicals and improv nights, resurrected the National Math Honors Society, and plays varsity soccer for Country Day. She is a huge Bucs’ fan who loves bringing the class together through Spirit Week and cheering on the football team as a member of the Pink Posse.

Sammy also plays a role within the class as a voice for diversity awareness in multiple ways—such as through class discussion, as a member of Girl Up, or in her decision to devote an issue of The Hook to diversity topics. She wrote in an essay for her Morehead-Cain application, “I have a privilege I won’t waste and a passion for diversity and leadership I can’t contain. And, I start conversations that allow others to join in with me. My words are powerful; I’ll never stop speaking up.”

As a member of the two-year International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma program, Sammy has sought out even greater rigor. She wrote in her application: “This year I have a full course load. While I love taking rigorous IB classes, I chose to also take classes that I am genuinely interested in: Physics and Dystopian Literature. I have a passion for both subjects and am willing to give up a free period in order to learn the maximum.” She has also worked 10 hours a week as a retail sales associate for the past three years.

Sammy joins a long list of Country Day alumni who have been offered the Morehead-Cain Scholarship:
  • Randy Jones ’69
  • David Webb ’71
  • Frank Dowd ’74
  • Jenny Burns Petitto ’75
  • Louis Bledsoe III ’77
  • Wylie Lowery ’79
  • Eva Compton Crawford ’80
  • Amy Fonville Owen ’81
  • Marshall Mills ’82
  • Jennifer Smith ’82
  • Ben Sutker ’83
  • Terri Martin ’83
  • Henry Pharr ’84
  • Scott Huelin ’84
  • Liz Smith ’88
  • Jonathan Justice ’91
  • Kelly Walton Muir ’93
  • Ivon Rohrer ’96
  • Jeffrey McLamb ’97
  • Jay Kenney ’98
  • Alexis Blane ’98
  • Vida Harvey ’00
  • Thomas Cluderay ’03
  • George Hodgin ’05
  • Justin Loiseau ’07
  • Eryn Ratcliffe ’13
  • Ellie Teller ’14
  • Lili Zay ’16
  • Sally Sasz ’17