The future looks bright for Larissa Barbosa Ferreria, Peabody School class of 2020. Larissa, whose family is originally from Brazil, enrolled at Peabody in Kindergarten and never looked back. While she is currently a semester away from graduating high school, Larissa holds her Peabody memories and experience close to her heart.
Larissa and her cousin Max commuted from Greene County to Peabody every day for 9 years. Larissa was and continues to be a talented student academically but says she got interested in government in Grade 6 when she was elected class representative for student government and VP in Grade 8. She loved all of her middle school classes at Peabody but developed a special interest in U.S. history and law, due in part to Mr. Merrick’s classes and a 6th grade mock trial on the Boston Massacre. She also really enjoyed the opportunity to choose her Arts & Enrichment classes.
Larissa considered local high school options; however, her uncle was promoting Northeast boarding schools for both her and Max. Larissa and her family chose Madeira, an all girls day and boarding school in McLean, VA. Larissa says Peabody definitely prepared her for Madeira’s advanced academics though she had to work really hard in Grade 9 to stay on top of her academics as she navigated life at boarding school which for the first five weeks operated remotely and then went to a hybrid model.
Larissa admits to not feeling homesick because boarding school keeps her very busy, and although she has a car at school, staying on campus on weekends affords her just a little “me” time. Outside of academics, Larissa serves as a Resident Advisor, captain of Madeira’s Dance Company, a member of the varsity dance team, and president of Best Buddies, a service organization that focuses on children with special needs. She is active regionally with Best Buddies, on the statewide Special Olympics Youth Leadership Council, and her passion is fueled by her younger brother Matheus who has Down’s Syndrome.
Madeira offers internship opportunities and Larissa has had amazing work experiences through this program. In Grade 9, Larissa worked with the Madeira Admissions Office; in Grade 10, she worked with Special Olympics; in Grade 11, she worked on Capitol Hill; and in Grade 12, she returned to D.C. to work with an all-female law firm that focuses on multiple legal areas including family, estate, disabilities, and immigration. While Larissa is casting a wide net for colleges and majors, she is definitely considering the areas of sociology, human rights, history, public policy, DEI work, and law.
Larissa shared the following advice about high school for Peabody students:
“Be open-minded. Peabody has prepared you academically, now it’s time to challenge yourself socially and in extra-curriculars. Join clubs, meet new people, and do your best to explore your surroundings. High school is an amazing time to figure yourself out as a person, and the people and organizations you surround yourself with can help you do that.“
About taking her Peabody experience with her, Larissa added:
“I love this place. I love the teachers. Peabody is such an amazing place that means the world to me and I can’t wait to give back.”