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Look Within,
See Beyond.

Honoring its founder’s vision, Emma Willard School proudly fosters in each young woman a love of learning, the habits of an intellectual life, and the character, moral strength, and qualities of leadership to serve and shape her world.

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A Look Within

With awareness that the world is changing and learners are changing with it, Emma Willard School's academic program equips our students to meet the extraordinary opportunities and challenges of their time.

Educating a generation of learners ready and able to address the most pressing issues of their time.

Fostering a sense of purpose in each student by emphasizing relevance, impact, and community connection

A focus on developing the skills necessary to build and sustain equity and justice in the world

Our Historic Campus

Discover your favorite study spot tucked into a tiny corner of the expansive gothic architecture on our beautiful 137-acre campus. Behind these stone walls, you'll find the inspiration to learn, create, and thrive. Become a part of the legacy of leaders who have called Mount Ida home.

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Leading with Purpose

For more than two centuries, Emma Willard School has been a preeminent school for girls, building a proud legacy of leaders who leverage their education to serve and shape the world. Together, we are advancing a vision of purposeful courage and informed action.

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A Sense of Belonging

At Emma Willard School, we commit ourselves to building a community that values and celebrates differences, encourages dialogue, fosters mutual respect, and highlights our shared purpose and ideals.

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Infinite Horizon Campaign

progress on the arts center annex

Emma Willard School has launched the largest campaign in the history of girls’ schools. With a goal of $175 million, Infinite Horizon: The Campaign for Emma Willard School will ensure our founders’ vision for generations to come.

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Two students holding a banner and standing in front of a poster for the 'Democracy Matters' club.

“My experience at Emma has helped me break out of my shell and feel confident in myself to ask my questions and make mistakes.”

Nadia M. 

Class of 2025

A student lounging on a couch taking a selfie, a cat sitting in front of them.

“Emma is absolutely spectacular. It’s weird. It’s wonderful.”

Violet 'V' W. 

Class of 2027

A student in a colorful shirt leans down next to a golden dog to take a selfie.

“I am constantly encouraged to challenge and explore myself.”

Alexis W.

Class of 2025

Two students smiling at the camera, lush tree in the background, with the arms around each other.

“I love the traditions and how they contribute to the sense of community.”

Charlotte L.

Class of 2024

Read Nadia's Story

Kicking off our One of 360 series in the new year is Nadia M. ’25, a junior boarding student from New York City with a passion for volleyball, community, and more! Read more about Nadia’s experience in her own words in today’s post!

On home…

Where I call home is Washington Heights in New York City! I live with my mom, dad, and younger brother Sasha, near the George Washington Bridge (GWB). My parents are both immigrants, my mom from Japan and my dad from Serbia. They came here together for education and later had me and my brother! Their family lives on different continents, so we get to travel a lot to go see them occasionally which is always exciting.

On Emma…

I heard about Emma from my godmother, Yen Pottinger ’98, who went to Emma. I got to tour campus when I was in 7th grade. My tour guide was a senior who was passionate about so many things, and I loved getting a glimpse into her life at Emma. I was in awe the whole time, and I remember loving the dorms; the community there looked so homey and comfy! 

I went to public school all my life, so I thought transitioning to Emma would be hard for me. Thankfully, I had an amazing community on freshman hall welcome me with open arms my freshman year, and I was incredibly grateful to have so many resources and opportunities available for me to learn about. 

What makes Emma special to me are the people and resources I can reach out to if I have a question or problem. I have always been afraid to ask for help, ever since elementary school, as I never wanted to admit I couldn’t do something myself. My experience at Emma has helped me break out of my shell and feel confident in myself to ask my questions and make mistakes. 

On volleyball…

I am very passionate about volleyball! In middle school, I used to play for fun, but coming to Emma created a newfound love for the sport. I’ve been playing at Emma since freshman year, and I was so excited when I moved up to varsity my sophomore year. Now, I am incredibly grateful to my coaches and teammates for helping me discover what makes me happy. I have learned countless different playing techniques, drills, and something we like to call scrappiness. 

Volleyball has also taught me a lot about communication on and off the court. With my teammates, we communicate with each other so well during games, and we put the most amount of effort we can until the play is over. And off the court, we acknowledge any mistakes, but we work together to shake it off and maintain a positive attitude by figuring out how to fix it. 

The friendships I have made with my teammates are extremely valuable to me, and we never fail to have a fun time on or off the court. We are very energetic, and can support each other at any time. I cannot wait for my last season at Emma next fall!

On learning to cook…

My dad is an amazing cook, and he has taught me a few dishes to cook before. I would love to learn to cook more things because it is very useful and I’ve always enjoyed trying new food.

On Emma traditions…

There are so many great traditions at Emma, some that I can be in, and some I get to watch and experience. My favorite would have to be Revels!! Seeing the community gather together to watch the seniors perform while the audience screams (basically after every line a senior recites) to cheer them on is something unique and exciting this school has. To see the seniors where they are now, and watching them perform their hearts out creates a strong sense of community that inspires me so much. It makes me so happy and grateful to see everyone sing, dance, yell, and laugh together. I am beyond excited for Revels 109, it's gonna be the best one yet!

Read Violet's Story

This month’s One of 360 is from Violet 'V' W. ’27, a 9th grade day student from the capital region with some best things about Albany suggestions, an interest in ballet, music, and a request for film recommendations! Read more about V in her own words in today's post.

On Home…

Home for me is Albany, New York. Lived here all my life. More specifically, home is my house. I live with my mum, dad, my cat Figgy, and my dog Poppy. 

The very best things about Albany are as follows:

  • The Curry House—they make the best chicken biryani and have known me since I was tiny.
  • Motor Oil Coffee—good chai lattes, and whoever was in charge of the music when I was there last had excellent taste!
  • The Pride Parade!!!!
  • Holiday Lights in the Park—this doesn't actually happen anymore but holds so many of my favorite memories. 
  • Sovrana's Pizza—the best pizza around and they give me cookies sometimes. 
  • My neighbors—they are all very nice and didn’t seem to mind when I did a mass cookie giveaway a few years ago!

On Emma…

Honestly, I have no memory of when I first heard about Emma. I came from a school where most of the graduates continue on to one private school or another, so it was always something I knew about. Plus, I had friends who went to GirlSummer. When I first seriously thought about Emma though, it was probably in November-ish of seventh grade. There was an admissions event open to 7th and 8th graders, and someone from Emma came to talk about the school. 

I was absolutely blown away. A school for (mostly) all girls was revolutionary to me. I vowed that I would go. Emma is absolutely spectacular. It’s weird. It’s wonderful. It looks like Hogwarts. 

On hobbies/passions… 

Food. Absolutely. I love everything about food except eating it, honestly. That sounds a bit odd now that I think about it! I’m just picky and vegetarian and terrible with texture! 

I love to cook, and I love food. My favorites are as follows:

  • Favorite thing to eat: French Onion Soup (!!!!!)
  • Favorite thing I’ve made: Thai Red Curry Noodles that I made for my family for dinner. 

And in terms of baking:

  • Favorite thing to eat: brownies maybe, or pie. Pie is good.  
  • Favorite thing to make: Bundt cake. No other options. Just bundt cake. (!!!!!!!!!)

Food is an art form, and baking is an excellent stress reliever, especially if you have something to do with an excess of cookies. (If you want anything baked, ask me; I’d be happy to make something.)

On exploring the arts…

I've been wanting to try ballet. I think it's just so wonderful. I’m absolutely buzzing to see The Nutcracker this winter. I’m also working on taking piano lessons. I absolutely adore music and want to try a new instrument. Film is also something I'm really interested in, and I've been trying to watch more. Any recommendations for interesting films are (very much) welcomed!

On Emma traditions…

I haven't experienced many of the traditions since this is my first year, but I have a feeling I will adore Peanuts & Shells. From what I've heard, I think May Day is pretty great too. 

Read Abbi's Story

Hear from Abigail (Abbi) P. ’26, a sophomore boarding student drawn to the artistry of dance, singing, and more! 

On Home…

My parents moved from the Dominican Republic to Puerto Rico and had me and my brother. I came to the States when I was just three and grew up in New Jersey. I was very close with my mom’s side of the family, and I grew up very close to my cousins and their parents on that side. I lived with my mom, brother, grandma, and grandpa for a little before he moved back to the DR. 

I now live with my brother, mom, and my dog, a three-year-old Labrador-Shiba Inu mix named Baldo, who is the cutest dog in the world and the best friend I could ever ask for. Although we don’t live as close to them anymore, I’m still very close with my grandma, cousins, and aunt and uncle. My mom visits them almost every day, and I visit them every time I go home for weekends.

On Emma…

I love Emma. I feel like going to an all-girls school that isn’t as restrictive as all-girls schools usually are is exactly the environment I need for high school. I feel comfortable to be myself here and I’m not scared of judgment. I applied to Emma through a program called A Better Chance (ABC), a program for students of color to get matched with schools affiliated with the program based on their compatibility. I first heard about Emma through one of the orientation programs held by ABC where a scholar of the program who at the time went to Emma mentioned the school and how much she enjoyed her time here, so I decided to do some research about it, and it quickly became my first choice. 

It was just far enough for me to grow my independence while still being able to come home every so often (thanks to my wonderful mother, who makes a four-hour round trip for me every other weekend). My first time on campus was during Envision Emma, and I immediately knew this was the environment I wanted to grow in. 

Emma is where I met some of my best friends and made some of my most incredible memories, so it will always hold a special place in my heart.   

On the performing arts…

I love the performing arts. My dad is a musician, so music has always been a huge part of my life. I love anything to do with it really. I’ve been singing since I could talk, and it’s always been something I consider less of a hobby and more as just who I am. 

I also started dancing when I was ten, and I immediately fell in love with the artistry of dance, and the relationship between my movements and the music. Here at Emma, I participate in Choir, Inner Choir, and Semiquavers, and I take Advanced Ballet, Advanced Contemporary, and the Choreography Workshop class, putting me on track to hopefully be an Emma Artist next year.  

There's always more to learn, especially in art.  As the world changes and grows, art develops with it, and I will always enjoy learning more and more about my passions. 

On exploring visual art…

This year, I’m taking an Intro to Drawing class, and although I went into the class just needing a visual art credit, I’m finding that I’m not as bad at drawing as I thought I would be.  I’ve always put most of my time into the performing arts, but I think moving forward, I might enjoy developing new skills in the visual arts as well.

On favorite Emma traditions…

Ring Siblings!! Although I can’t have one yet, I witnessed a couple of proposals last year, and I feel like it’s the sweetest tradition here! Seeing friends come together and perform songs and dances, sometimes embarrassing themselves publicly for their friend, is such a selfless act, and it's very sweet to see the connection between friends in real-time. It feels like such a real declaration of appreciation and love, and it shows the kind of friendships that last lifetimes.

Read Alexis's Story

Hear from Alexis W. ’25 a junior boarding student from Shanghai, China about family dinners, bonding at Emma, and the strength it takes to get in the pool in the winter!

 

On home…

I live in Shanghai, China with my mom, dad, sister, and Daimeng (my doggie). We like to take Daimeng out for a hike, swimming with his friends, or a walk along the Bund. My family loves to invite my aunts, uncles, and grandparents to our house for family dinner, and my favorite part is the gaming part after the dinner. I learned so many fun poker games in the past and even Mojang during this summer. 

 

On discovering Emma…

I learned about Emma from my high school counselors. They told me that Emma is a school that encourages girls to break boundaries. I later discovered the school website and saw the pictures of the beautiful campus, and I knew that this would be the environment that I wanted to study in. This year is my third year at Emma, and I think the sense of a tight community makes Emma special for me. Within this bonding, I harvest way more skills because I am constantly encouraged to challenge and explore myself more. 

 

On swimming…

I am most passionate about swimming. I got into swimming because I used to have asthma, and my parents thought that swimming was a sport that could help me get rid of it. Also coincidently, there was a swim coach picking kids from my kindergarten to cultivate for a district team in Shanghai. Since my mom is tall, the coach thought that maybe I could be a good swimmer. So I got picked and that is how I started swimming. Determination is what I have learned from swimming. In winter when the weather is freezing, I need to convince myself to go to the pool to swim. It has been my 11th year swimming, and it has definitely become one of my life-long hobbies. 

 

On new hobbies…

I would like to explore skateboarding. I watched skateboarders flying past me when I was walking on the street. Some of them did flip tricks and I think it is so cool!

 

On traditions…

My favorite tradition at Emma is Revels. It has been so fun to see the seniors I know dressing up and performing during Revels. There are so many interesting characters, like devils, jesters, country women, etc. Revels have always been such a vivid memory for me. 

 

Thanks you Alexis, for sharing your passions and contributing to the Emma Willard School community in unique and significant ways! We look forward to seeing the impact you will have as you continue to serve and shape our world!

Read Charlotte's Story

Hear from Charlotte L. ’24 on community at Emma, pursuing a career in broadcast journalism, and her favorite tradition on campus!

On Home…

Home for me is Schodack, New York, which is about a 25-minute drive away from Emma. I grew up with my two brothers and my parents. I also grew up next door to my grandparents, so I have a very good relationship with them. My oldest brother recently graduated from college and moved out on his own. I have three dogs as well.  

On Emma…

I learned about Emma because of my middle school science teacher. He had a child that went to Emma and he thought I would really like it. From the second I stepped on campus, I loved Emma and knew I was supposed to go to school here. I loved the traditions and how they contribute to the sense of community on campus. Another thing I love about Emma is the connections I have with the faculty and teachers (shoutout Ms. Skott and Dr. Grimm). But the thing that makes Emma the most special for me is my friends. I have truly made the best friends at Emma. 

On Broadcast Journalism…

I am super passionate about pursuing a career in broadcast journalism. I’ve had the amazing opportunity this summer to do a job shadow at News Channel 13 with Kumi Tucker. I’ve been able to learn so much about the industry and even get some experience of my own. I have been able to learn what goes into reporting on a story, as well as get some practice both in front of the camera and with editing. I became interested in this field because of a field trip I took to News Channel 13 in 8th grade. The whole station and everything about the field trip really sparked my interest. Although I have been fortunate to have this experience and learn about the industry, I still have a long way to go, so I am hoping to continue on this career path in the future. 

On Trying New Things…

I really want to get into hiking. I think it's super fun, and I’ve done some hiking in the past, but I would love to get into it more. 

On Favorite Emma Traditions…

It’s so hard for me to pick because I really love all the traditions at Emma. But if I had to pick a favorite, it would definitely be Revels! The excitement of Revels week from the not-senior perspective is super fun. Also obviously the excitement of the actual night of Revels is so fun. Getting dressed up and lining up in Lyon-Remington with all my friends are some of my favorite memories I’ve made at Emma. I am really looking forward to being in Revels and experiencing the excitement as a senior!

 

Thank you, Charlotte for sharing your passions and contributing to the Emma Willard School community in unique and significant ways. We look forward to seeing the impact you will have as you continue to serve and shape our world!

See Beyond...

Can you envision yourself at Emma Willard School? Keep exploring to find out if the Emma experience is right for you.

Find Out If Emma is the Place For You

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