5/27/12 The Next Step

Local students earn prestigious Copland scholarships
By Mike Wilder The Times-News 5/27/12     
Reprinted with permission.

Meet the Scholars


Marc Gutierrez, a graduating senior at Williams High School, is headed to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on the James R. Copland and Lillian G. Copeland Scholarship. Gutierrez leaves Williams as a top academic student noted for his role as the school's Bulldog mascot during football games.

Rebekah Bunn, who is graduating from Western Alamance High School, earned the Copeland College-Bound Scholarship to pursue her future studies. She served as co-captain of the school volleyball team during her time at Western, and in her spare time volunteered with the local Special Olympics.

   Marc Gutierrez has an extensive record of achievement at Williams High School and elsewhere in Alamance County.

   He’s dressed as the school’s Bulldog mascot for football games, been a leader in the school’s choral programs and taken some of the most challenging academic courses offered there.

   As he heads to college after four years at Williams, the work has paid off. Gutierrez received the James R. Copland and Lillian G. Copland Scholarship to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The total value of the scholarship is $35,000. It covers tuition, fees and other expenses.

   Information from UNC Chapel Hill says the scholarship goes to the most promising high school graduate from Alamance County.

   It is awarded to a student who shows strength in academics, character, leadership and athletics. The scholarship is given in memory of business leader James R. Copland Jr. and his wife, Lillian G. Copland. Copland was president and treasurer of Copland Fabrics and Copland Inc.

   Gutierrez was one of 125 finalists this year for the Morehead-Cain Scholarship at UNC Chapel Hill, though not one of the 55 students chosen to receive the scholarship.

   He is a physical fitness enthusiast, dances and plays handbells in church. He has been his Boy Scout troop’s senior patrol leader and tutored and taught as part of honors societies at Williams.

   “I am most proud of helping a failing student get an ‘A’ on her Chemistry exam and reading a book in Spanish to small children one day at Barnes and Noble while a fluent parent translated,” he wrote in applying for the Morehead-Cain award.

   In recent years, the bulldog mascot outfit has been sparingly used. By consistently dressing and dancing as George the Bulldog, he wrote, “I played a part in reviving the school spirit at Williams High.”

   He is the son of Joe and Colleen Gutierrez.

   ANOTHER LOCAL STUDENT , Rebekah Bunn of Western Alamance High School, received the Copland College-Bound Scholarship. It has a total value of $10,000 to help cover costs during four years of school.

   It is awarded each year to the son or daughter (or other legal dependent) of a fulltime employee of the Copland Companies. The student is chosen based on academic excellence, leadership, athletic vigor and character/ community service.

   In an essay written before the scholarship was awarded, Bunn said she wants to be a pediatric nurse. She has been co-captain of the volleyball team at Western, with community service that includes helping with the Special Olympics.

   She wrote about the challenge of combining academics with activities and working.

   “It has been difficult at times to study and do homework after games or once I have gotten off work, but I made school work my priority,” she wrote. “I believe this work ethic will go a long way toward accomplishing my career goals.”

   Bunn is the daughter of Frank Bunn and Sandra Fuller.