Global Impact

Saying ‘Yes’ To Opportunities

Morehead-Cain Scholar and international student Sarah Mackenzie's career goals grew directly from her experiences supported by the Discovery Fund.

Morehead-Cain scholar Sarah Mackenzie sits atop a camel in Petra, Jordan.

Morehead-Cain Scholar and international student Sarah Mackenzie's career goals grew directly from her experiences supported by the Discovery Fund.

If any single student has taken full advantage of the Morehead-Cain Discovery Fund, it’s Sarah Mackenzie ’20.

Discovery Fund grants enable Morehead-Cain Scholars to say “yes” to opportunities that will broaden their life experience and increase their self-awareness. Scholars can apply for grants of up to $8,000 over the course of their four years at Carolina.

Sarah, an international student from Alberta, Canada, pursuing a double major in public policy and global studies and a minor in Arabic, has said “yes” seven times throughout her studies at Carolina.

“I have been fortunate to use the various resources that the Morehead-Cain Foundation and the University offer to travel and engage in issues that I care about in the United States and abroad,” she shared.

In her first year at Carolina, Sarah and a fellow scholar spent a week in Bosnia-Herzegovina learning about the war tourism industry. Sarah spent the summer before her sophomore year in Johannesburg, South Africa, working to support and grow housing markets for the Centre for Affordable Housing Finance in Africa, a think-tank run by UNC Morehead-Cain alumna Kecia Rust ’90.

Most recently, Sarah spent the fall semester of her junior year studying Arabic in the CET Jordan language program — “definitely one of the most challenging things I’ve done,” she noted. While in Amman, Jordan, she also used the Discovery Fund to attend classes in Arabic at a women’s only self-defense and boxing studio.

Sarah accessed the Discovery Fund for several domestic programs, as well, including: a summer fellowship with the Immigrant Justice Corps in New York City, New York; a conference in New Orleans, Louisiana; a research visit to the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama; and training courses at the Racial Equity Institute in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Sarah said she is grateful for the scholarships from the Morehead-Cain Foundation, especially as she considers a career in law, working in criminal justice and social protection.

“My career goals have grown directly out of my summer experiences supported by the Discovery Fund. I’ve gotten to see first-hand what a career in any of these fields look like, and that has been an amazing experience.”

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