Forever Emma

Spring 2020 Edition of Signature Magazine

Melissia Mason
After a semester of COVID-related upheaval, the spring edition of the Emma Willard School magazine, Signature, hit mailboxes last week. The original focus of this issue was on our strategic imperatives regarding health and wellness, diversity, equity, and inclusion, and our new academic pillars. As the COVID-19 virus started impacting daily life, the school year shifted to an online learning experience, Virtually Emma. To mark this unique moment in the life of the school, our editorial staff worked to infuse the Spring 2020 issue with pieces of content that give added perspective on how Emma Willard School is adjusting and thriving during this global pandemic. On the cover, members of our COVID task force lead the way in masking and maintaining physical distance while working together.
In this issue, we feature Emma Willard School alumnae Mary Lake Polan '61, Clare Gaskins '95, Ann Aldershof Helmus ’79, and then-student/now-alumna Hannah Shulman '20. All have dedicated themselves to the health and wellbeing of others. 
Although this spring was focused on a quick transition to online learning, our academic departments were already deeply engaged in planning around three central principles that are guiding curriculum revision: intellectual flexibility, a sense of purpose and community, and an understanding of equity and justice. You'll learn more in the article "Defining Our Own Brand of Learning."
We also hear from alumna Joshunda Sanders '96 about her work writing with a diversity and justice lens. Just as the magazine was going to print, our nation began experiencing once again the impacts of systemic racism with the death of George Floyd. Although we were not able to address the evolving situation in the magazine itself, in her interview Joshunda encourages readers to "yield the floor" in order to amplify the voices of those who have been and still are marginalized.
We invite you to view the full Spring 2020 edition of Signature to enjoy these and more stories of Emma Willard School faculty, students, and graduates who are serving and shaping our world.
    • Members of our COVID task force lead the way

    • Hannah Shulman '20 and other alumnae share their passion for wellness

    • Joshunda Sanders '96 inspires us to "yield the floor"

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Welcome to Emma Willard School, a private day and boarding high school for girls in Troy, NY, and a leader in girls' education for over 200 years.