Cabrini will award full-tuition scholarships to two winners of the 2021 Miss Philadelphia Scholarship Organization: Elaine Ficarra, Miss Philadelphia, and Cailey Ryons, Miss Philadelphia’s Outstanding Teen. The two young women toured Cabrini’s campus last month.
Each Miss Philadelphia winner promotes a social cause as part of her civic platform. Both Ficarra and Ryons use their positions to advocate for mental health awareness and suicide prevention.
“At Cabrini, we encourage our students to make meaningful contributions on campus and in the world around them,” said Kimberley Lewis, Executive Director of Admissions. “This year, Elaine and Cailey will make their own meaningful contributions through their platforms. We are thrilled to provide them with the opportunity to join the Cabrini community as students.”
Cabrini has partnered with Miss Philadelphia since 2019. Each of the scholarship recipients must also be granted acceptance to the University through the traditional application process. While Ficarra is currently enrolled as an undergraduate at Drexel University, her scholarship can be applied to a Cabrini graduate program.
Miss Philadelphia 2019, Alysa Bainbridge, is slated to begin the Master of Science in Leadership program at Cabrini this fall.
Part of the Miss America network, the Miss Philadelphia Scholarship Organization celebrates women living in the five Philadelphia-area counties (Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Philadelphia) who have unique talents and are conscientious in their civic engagement.
“Miss Philadelphia is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, and we’ve seen a wide range of young women who come from all types of backgrounds,” said Bobbey Biddle, Executive Director of the Miss Philadelphia Scholarship Organization. “What makes our competition unique is that it runs the gamut of race, financial, and socioeconomic backgrounds.”
Talent is a key characteristic the Miss Philadelphia judges look for each year, Biddle said, and that invites a diverse cohort of young women. The Miss Philadelphia honor is awarded to women aged 18‒25, while Miss Philadelphia Outstanding Teen is awarded in the 13‒17 age bracket.
Ficarra, who is Filipino American, is a gifted singer who has performed the “Star Spangled Banner” at several Philadelphia Phillies games since 2018. And, Ryons, who attends The Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts, is a skilled tap dancer.
“The University is proud to be part of a strong legacy of empowering young women through leadership, service, and education,” Lewis said.