Summer Enrichment

Designed to change your life.

It’s a vital part of the Morehead-Cain experience: four life-changing, fully funded summers created to open your eyes in ways you never imagined.

The Morehead-Cain Summer Enrichment Program was designed with you in mind. You’ll propose an internship or project, hone your ideas with support from staff, develop a budget, and then carry it out with full funding from the Foundation.

Sound daunting? Fear not: over the years we’ve developed a framework to accelerate scholars’ growth.


In your first summer as a Morehead-Cain, in the months following your high school graduation, you’ll embark on what might be the most challenging experience of your life to date: a multi-week Outdoor Leadership course.

After you learn more about your strengths and weaknesses through Outdoor Leadership, your second summer will focus on outward impact. During the Civic Collaboration summer, teams of scholars embed themselves in cities across the U.S., investigate those communities’ challenges and opportunities, and propose real solutions. Not as interns—but as citizens.

Your third summer deepens your focus and encourages you to plumb the depths of your long-held or newfound interests. The Global Perspective summer is an opportunity to conduct an independent research project or learn about a new sector or part of the world through a more traditional internship.

In your fourth summer, which is called Professional Experience, you’ll take part in an approved internship or pursue a startup idea of your own. You’ll learn invaluable professional skills that will serve you well in your career—whether it be in private business, nonprofit, or self-directed entrepreneurship.

These four diverse summers—strategically designed to help scholars understand more about the world and how they can make a difference in it—inspire confidence, foster independence, and provide in-depth hands-on learning experiences.

A Deeper Dive

Outdoor Leadership

During the summer between your senior year in high school and your first year at Carolina, you’ll select and participate in one of more than fifty courses offered by Outward Bound or the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS). Designed to challenge you—mentally, emotionally, and physically—each three-week course provides an experience as invaluable as it is unforgettable.

The point? To test limits, then overcome them. To foster self-possession through self-reliance and self-reflection. To promote confidence, and the maturity necessary to buttress the demands of responsible leadership.

Global Perspective

The third summer scatters you and other scholars across the globe to dig into areas of personal interest. You’ll customize the summer by choosing either to conduct an independent, in-depth research project or to explore a particular industry through an internship. Lasting anywhere from five to twelve weeks, the Global Perspective summer cultivates and rewards intellectual depth and curiosity.

The point? The third summer deepens your focus and encourages plumbing the depths of long-held or newly discovered interests—all while gaining valuable experience.

Civic Collaboration

After focusing inward with Outdoor Leadership, the second summer directs your attention outward by giving you eight to ten weeks to work full-time in direct service to others.

The Civic Collaboration Summer is an opportunity for a small group of scholars to engage in a “deep dive” into a specific city, getting to know its identity and spirit while grappling with its challenges and enjoying its strengths. This summer is about understanding the complete connections between a city’s economic, cultural, governmental, educational, political, and historical systems, and the ways that individuals are creating change through them.

The point? To promote the concept that it is the responsibility of those to whom much is given to give much in return.

Professional Experience

The four summers culminate with an opportunity for you to dip your toes into post-collegiate waters. You’ll try on professional life through a formal internship—likely through our extensive alumni network—or you may choose to pursue a business idea of your own.

The point? Whether you choose private enterprise, nonprofit, or entrepreneurship, firsthand knowledge of the inner workings of your desired field is essential for breadth of perspective.

“Without the Morehead-Cain Scholarship, I wouldn't know the sparkle of winter stars in the Andes, the inner workings of a startup media company, or exactly how cold Maine seawater is at 4:00 a.m.”
  • Lizzy Hazeltine
  • Class of 2011