Mayan Hands is excited to announce the selection of our first Emma Willard Scholar. Emma Hart Willard was a pioneer in women's education and Emma Willard School, the school she founded, was the first in the United States to offer higher education for women, including subjects like math, science and philosophy The Mayan Hands Emma Willard scholarship honors Emma Willard and her legacy, and the students, in Guatemala and the United States, who embody her values.
In 2010, Emma Willard School became the nation's first Fair Trade School. True to their legacy, students are committed to making meaningful choices and empowering the women who create artisan products and work on farms in developing nations by ensuring they’re paid a fair wage and work in safe conditions. Emma Willard's Fair Trade club donates a portion of its sales proceeds to Mayan Hands, selected because of our commitment to educating the daughters of our weavers. Mayan Hands artisans consider education to be their highest priority. They know for their daughters in particular, attending school is critical, as Mayan girls represent the most disadvantaged group in Guatemala in terms of education.
To show our gratitude for the school community's continued support and to honor Emma Willard's legacy, Mayan Hands initiated a scholarship in Emma Willard's name. After consulting with Emma students about the criteria, we selected Karen C., a curious 12-year-old with a passion for learning. Karen’s age is significant as 12 is the age by which most Mayan girls drop out of school to focus on their future roles as wives and mothers.
Congratulations Karen on her scholarship and thank you to the Emma Willard School community!