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Gift will provide aid to Hampshire students interested in childhood learning and education with an emphasis on helping children on the autism spectrum
Hampshire College has received a gift of $100,000 from Dr. Melvin Hershkowitz to establish a scholarship in memory of his daughter, Hampshire alum Marie Hershkowitz, a beloved early-childhood educator from Northampton who passed away in 2013. She was 59. A 1977 graduate, Marie had studied with the renowned Caribbean writer, poet, and journalist Andrew Salkey and was influenced by his work.
Marie found her calling helping children learn, and the Marie Hershkowitz Memorial Scholarship will provide financial aid to female Hampshire students interested in childhood learning and education, especially for those who want to specialize in helping children on the autism spectrum.
Marie worked for many years in early-childhood intervention for the REACH program in Northampton, serving children who had or were at risk for development delays—from, for example, autism-spectrum disorders—as well as in elementary education at the Bridge Street School, where her father also established a memorial fund in her name. At the Bridge Street School, her skills in helping children with disabilities were widely recognized, and she received Appreciation Awards from the Northampton Special Education Parent Advisory Council in both 2007 and 2012.
Marie began her career in the Hampshire College library (1979–84). While there, she met Stephen Hathaway, also a Hampshire alum, whom she later married and with whom she had two wonderful sons: Ben (Williston Northampton School, Columbia College, and Suffolk University MBA), and Sam (Williston Northampton School, Middlebury College).
Dr. Hershkowitz, who lives in Northampton, said, “I have established this scholarship to help preserve the memory of my wonderful daughter, and to support Hampshire College and future generations of young people entering the field of childhood education, which was Marie’s passion.”
“Hampshire is delighted and grateful for the opportunity to establish this scholarship in memory of Marie,” said Jennifer Lawton, director of financial aid at the College. “Many deserving students come to Hampshire to study in our innovative Childhood, Youth, and Learning program and will benefit greatly from this new source of support for their education.”
If you would like to make a gift to the Marie Hershkowitz Memorial Scholarship, call Cheri Butler, at 413-558-5599, or visit giving.hampshire.edu.
For more information on Hampshire’s Childhood, Youth, and Learning program, visit the CYL page.
Marie Hershkowitz with her sons Sam and Ben.