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Ankush Vij

Ankush Vij

Class of 2021
Major: Computer Science

Did receiving the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship influence your decision to come to Carolina?

The Wood Scholarship was one of the most influential factors that gave me an opportunity not only to afford Carolina but also to be a part of such a prestigious scholarship with endless opportunities to network with students, alumni, and employers.

What does the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship mean to you?

The Wood Scholarship is a treasure - filled with opportunities to prepare future students for leadership, teamwork, and success. The Wood Scholarship offers abundant resources to network and improve a student's success in the real world.

What do you enjoy most about being a Wood Scholar?

I enjoyed debates about real-life scenarios and issues the most because I was able to leave my ‘bubble’ and explore the mindset of others, which allowed me to observe scenarios from an unfamiliar point of view.


Valentina Arismendi

Valentina Arismendi

Class of 2021
Major: Media and Journalism

Did receiving the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship influence your decision to come to Carolina?

The monetary aspect of the Wood Scholarship provided me with a significant opportunity here at Carolina, but what inspired me most about the program was how it trained you to become a better person, both inside and outside the classroom. With the program’s emphasis on leadership, service, and exploration, I’ve been able to participate in unique learning experiences to teach me how to create a more fulfilling future for myself.

What does the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship mean to you?

The Wood Scholarship has served as a guide to me to act not just on the matters I’m passionate about, but also to explore opportunities outside what I typically would have considered to be within my reach. It has instilled in me the thought to always seek out more. Because of what I learned in the program, after just my first year at Carolina, I was able to secure a summer internship in my prospective field, job shadow in Kentucky, and present my work at a conference in California. I would never have sought out opportunities such as these without the inspiration from the leaders I met in this program.

What do you enjoy most about being a Wood Scholar?

As a Wood Scholar, I was exposed to an enriching environment comprised of professionals, alumni, and even fellow scholars in the program, all who helped cultivate my potential week by week. I was able to take their experiences and apply them to both my personal and professional growth. Now, I’m not only conscientious about my own future, but I’m actively making the decisions that will benefit me even once my four years at Carolina are over.


Kaitlyn Yakaboski

Kaitlyn Yakaboski

Class of 2020
Major: Undecided major

Did receiving the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship influence your decision to come to Carolina?

Receiving the Wood Scholarship definitely influenced my decision to come to Carolina. It meant that I wouldn't have to worry about taking out student loans to fund an education at one of the country's top universities. After hearing about the programming element of the scholarship, I knew that it wasn't an opportunity I could pass up. It was a chance to be at a prestigious university and have the added benefit of a scholarship tailored to improving the experience of the scholars.

What does the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship mean to you?

To me, the Wood Scholarship is the group of people that comes with it. The financial aspect is amazing, of course, but beyond that, the attention and support we receive from the director is incredible. The Wood Scholarship means having a tight knit group amongst a huge campus that makes Carolina feel even more like home.

What do you enjoy most about being a Wood Scholar?

My favorite part of being a Wood Scholar is the sense of community that I've felt among this scholarship group and how they push me to be better and do better. From our book discussions in Vance 120 to having a familiar face in lecture halls, the Wood Scholarship gives you a built-in group that will be there to support you.


Peyton Chance

Peyton Chance

Class of 2018
Major: Media and Journalism - Interactive Multimedia
Major: Global Studies

Did receiving the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship influence your decision to come to Carolina?

Absolutely. As an out-of-state student, I was looking for a top-tier public education paired with a spirited and well-connected campus that I couldn't find at home. Receiving the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship made earning a Carolina degree a reality because it made UNC the most affordable option on my list. Beyond that, the scholarship was unique in that it paired financial aid with personalized leadership development.

What does the Wood Family Foundation Scholarship mean to you?

The Wood Scholars program places a heavy focus on self-awareness and self-discovery. With personality tests and strengths evaluations, I have been able to use the program to learn so much more about myself than I expected. The Wood program is all about self-discovery.

What do you enjoy most about being a Wood Scholar?

I love the community aspect of the scholarship program. Our cohort has become close over the past 3 years, and it's always nice to catch up with everyone at our meetings. I also love that the scholarship programming is constantly evolving based on our experiences and feedback.