2017 Scholarship Awards

Providing scholarships to students of Rapanui ancestry who wish to further their education is a mission objective of the Easter Island Foundation. With the help of our partners and donors, we were able to award the following scholarships in 2017:

Six Fraternal Order of Moai Foundation Scholarships  (totaling $11,525)

Easter Island Foundation Scholarship ($2000)

Georgia Lee Memorial Scholarship ($2000)

We thank all our donors and partners who have contributed to our successful scholarship award program. Since our program began in 2002, we have awarded over $150,000 in scholarships. Donations received in 2017 will be used for scholarships awarded the following year. To make a donation to the scholarship program, please download the form below or contact us:

EIF Scholarship Donation Form

 scholarships “at”

 2017 Easter Island Foundation Scholarship Winners 


Americo Loyola Edmunds (Fraternal Order of Moai Scholarship – $2000)

Americo is in his 5th year studying Agronomy at the Escuela de Agronomía Universidad Santo Tomás in Santiago. After completing the Engineering in Agriculture program, he is taking a course on the installation of photovoltaic solar panels. “I would like to be able to create a sustainable project for agriculture on Rapa Nui based on renewable energy emitted by the solar panels. The possibility of continuing my studies for a year and a half more to get a degree to Agronomy motivates and encourages me, and as I acquire more knowledge and experience, both practical and theoretical, I can later teach classes at the Agricultural School ‘Aldea Educativa’ on the island to the future generations”.


Oscar Pakomio Jara (Fraternal Order of Roger Danger Carlson Scholarship – $1525)

Oscar is in his 5th year studying at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso. During the past year he carried out his professional practice and his thesis, which was based on a comparative study between the level of active displacement between the students of the continent and Rapa Nui. This motivated him to continue investigating and carrying out studies in the Hanga Roa, since very few studies exist on the island in terms of living and daily habits, especially in the field of health. “Only by enhancing the study and research of our island in various subjects, we can improve our quality of life on the island, which is a task in which everyone can and should participate. This is one of the reasons that motivates me to continue studying and improving in my area of expertise, deepening my knowledge and acquiring greater tools to improve the life and prestige of my beloved island”.


Marari Riroroco Cabezas (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Scholarship – $2000)

Marari is in her 4th year studying Agronomy at the Universidad de Viña del Mar. One of her future projects involves correcting the problem of untreated water on Rapa Nui. She would like to implement a system where wastewater s treated for the whole community and used as irrigation water for fertilization and crops. “My greatest desire is to combat erosion, which increases every day due to rain, winds and excessive traffic of animals and humans. In the past year, I learned about useful and beneficial tools that could be applied on Rapa Nui, such as innovative irrigations systems that collect water from rain for use on crops and the recognition of fungal diseases present in crops and their control and prevention. These tools that have given me the knowledge that I can use in the future for the betterment of our everyday lives on Rapa Nui”.


Emilou Benitez Tepano (Fraternal Order of Moai Ohana Scholarship – $2000)

Emilou is in her 2nd year studying Public Relations and Marketing at the Instituto Profesional DUOC UC in Viña del Mar. She plans to create her own small communications company, that would be the first one on the island. She considers that this could help the Rapanui people in different ways. “Communication is a powerful tool in different aspects or expressions; it’s so powerful that it could influence or change the ways people behave or even how they think or act. The island needs important changes, especially in the social aspect. Public Relations is a profession that for many years has influenced the way we relate with to big business, brands and organizations, that is why I would like to focus my career on culture and sports, where the people of the island have a lot of potential”.


Tipanie Blanco Velasquez (Fraternal Order of Moai Scholarship – $2000)

Tipanie is in her 4th year, studying Medcine at the Universidad de Santiago de Chile. When she completes her studies, she plans to work first in Chile to gain more experience as a doctor, and to provide for support and guidance to all the Rapanui people who must go the continent for medical reasons, because few people on the continent fully inform the Rapanui people of the medical procedures and administrative steps they must take. Afterwards, she plans to return to the island to offer her professional services to the Rapanui community. “With more experience and belonging to the Rapa Nui culture, I will be able to provide good quality service as a doctor, not only professionally but also as a protector of Rapanui culture, knowing the needs of the people of the island. I would like to do projects, together with other health professionals, to give the Rapanui people full and quality care, so that the smallest number of people on the island have to travel to the continent to go to the doctor”.


Noah Paoa Kannegiesser (Georgia Lee Memorial Scholarship — $2000)

Noah is in his 2nd year, studying Earth Sciences at the University of Oregon in Eugene. After he finishes his bachelor’s degree, Noah’s plans to help the Rapanui community go beyond applying the tools and knowledge he acquired during his  studies; they will also helping preserve the island’s intangible cultural heritage. He feels that the island landscape is being adapted in order to satisfy the needs of the increasing population and number of visitors. Such adaptations include roads, houses, trails. The new landscape that has been created affects the way that the rest of the untouched landscape responds to the climate’s dynamics, for example erosion takes place more quickly. His approach to this issue is to start a project of sustainable use of the landscape in order to decrease the impact of the community’s adaptation to the landscape. On the other hand, the increase in visitors and in the number of residents, as well as the increase in inter-connectivity between Rapa Nui and the rest of the world has increased the activities that the Rapanui population practices. Because of this, there has been a decrease in the young community’s use of the Rapanui language and of traditional knowledge. “A personal goal of mine is to learn, master and register as many Rapanui songs, especially traditional songs, as I can and so cooperate with the preservation of part of the cultural knowledge that remains. The best way that we can assure that the tangible and intangible heritage is preserved is to have different people master different areas of knowledge in order to have the most complete record of what we have left”.


Maeha Vaiora Leon Duran  (Fraternal Order of Moai Scholarship – $2000)

Maeha is in her 2nd year studying Fashion Design/Industrial Process Laboratory at the Technological University of Chile INACAP in Las Condes. She plans to carry out workshops to teach the care and way of using Rapanui materials such as mahute, kakaka and seashells (pipi, pure, etc.). The workshops will consist of teaching basic skills to take measurements, make molds, and the use of different machines to begin to develop small companies and organize ideas to create a collection. The aim is to save and preserve ancestral clothing and to improve the quality and preparation of garments to be used in parades and cultural festivals.

Nicanor Andres Machuca Haoa (Easter Island Foundation Scholarship – $2000)  

Nicanor is in his 4th year studying Physical Education at the Universidad de las Americas in Santiago. He plans to design a project to implement a high performance center that will support the young people of the island. “There is a lot of potential but few opportunities, therefore the objective is to be able to include the maximum number of young people interested in different sports as a way of contributing to each family and to instill in the children the discipline of sports, and the intrinsic values of teamwork and perseverance. This initiative will open horizons and contribute to society as healthy alternative to social problems such as drug addiction, alcoholism, and violence”.


 EIF Scholarship Award Winners, Past and Present



2016 scholarship winners, family members and scholarship committee members.

Left to right: Americo Loyola Edmunds (Fraternal Order of Moai Award); Viki Haoa (Island Scholarship Committee); Marla Wold (EIF Scholarship Committee Chair); Marari Riroroco Cabezas (Fraternal Order of Moai Award); Teresita Manutomatoma (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award); Natalia Tuki (Island Scholarship Committee); Kiva Teave Atam (sister of Ma’ara Teave Atam; Fraternal Order of Moai Award); and Oscar Pakomio Jara (Fraternal Order of Moai Roger Danger Carlson Award).


A gathering of past and current scholars and family members, EIF committee members and governors (present and former) on 10 February 2013. 

Left to right,  front row:  Catalina Hey (Grandmother of Tiare de la Puente Bernacer); Carolina Hotu Hey (Governor of Easter Island); Elaine Crumpley (EIF scholarship committee); Barbara Tuki Gaete (Mildred R. Donoghue Award 2010, 2011, 2012). Back row:  Tahira Edmunds  (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award 2005); Merahi Atam (Fraternal Order of the Moai Award, 2011, 2012); Charlie Love (EIF Board of Directors); Tiare de la Puente Bernacer (EIF Award 2009, 2012, Friends of Rapa Nui Award 2013); Tavake Riroroco Cabezas (Mildred R. Donoghue Award 2010, 2011, 2012); Lafquen Passalacqua Hucke (Fraternal Order of Moai Award 2013, 2014); Marla Wold (EIF Scholarship Chair); Tarita Alarcón Rapu (Fraternal Order of Moai Award 2012; Ananda/Sheree Lipton Award 2013); Rafael Rapu (EIF Award 2012; Brian Scothorne Award and Ananda Foundation/Sheree Lipton Award 2013); Carmen Cardinali, former Governor of Easter Island.

2103 award winners, left to right: Pamina Olivares Paoa, Lafquen Passalacqua Hucke, Laura Tarita Alarcon Rapu, Marla Wold (EIF Scholarship Chair), Cecilia Hormazabal Araki; not pictured: Rafael Paoa Rapu.

Updates on some of our past scholarship recipients:        

Ana Huke Fuentes (Fraternal Order of Moai Award, 2010) is now working at the Hare Noi Hotel on Easter island.


 Tiare Carolina de la Puente Bernacer (EIF Award, 2009; 2012; Friends of Rapa Nui Award 2014) has been studying medicine at the Universidad de Chile in Santiago; her EIF scholarship helped to make possible her dream to study medicine at one of the most prestigious schools in Chile. She wants to return to the island and work within the community in the local hospital. She is grateful for the EIF scholarship program as it enables Rapanui students to continue their studies.  In 2012, the EIF held a special fundraiser at the welcome banquet at the Easter Island and the Pacific Conference in Santa Rosa, CA, and raised enough money to present Tiare with a second scholarship to assist with continuation of her studies in medicine.

Alan Tepano Haoa (Directors Award, 2008) is now working on the island with archaeologist Sonia Haoa.

Antonio Fernando Muñoz Tuki  (Directors Award, 2007; EIF Award, 2006)

 Complete List of Past Scholarship Recipients


Ma’ara Teave Atam (Fraternal Order of Moai Award — $2000)

Francisca Martinez Pakarati (Mana Award for Environmental Studies — $1000)

Ariki Merino Rapu (Easter Island Foundation Award — $2000)

Americo Loyola Edmunds (Fraternal Order of Moai Award — $2000)

Oscar Pakomio Jara (Fraternal Order of Moai Roger Danger Carlson Award — $2000)

Francisca Pakomio Villanueva (Haka’ara Award — $1000)

Teresita Mihi Tiare Manutomtoma Hotus (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award — $2000)

Marari Riroroko Cabezas (Fraternal Order of Moai Award — $2000)

Ghislaine Tepano Tepano (Fraternal Order of Moai Award — $500)

Pechquinco Passalaqua Hucke (Rosita & Nicolas Haoa Haoa Award — $1000)


Ariki Merino Rapu (Friends of Rapa Nui Award - $2000)

Ma’ara Teave Atam (Fraternal Order of Moai Award - $2000)

Americo Loyola Edmunds (EIF Director’s Award - $2000)

Francisca Martinez Pakarati (The Mana Award for Environmental Studies, supported for 2015 by Pacific Aid Australia and Susie Stephen, “Retracing Routledge’ - $2000)

Oscar Pakomio Jara (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award - $2000)

Ghislaine Rebecca Tepano Tepano (Fraternal Order of Moai Ohana Award - $1000 and Sheree Lipton/Ananda Foundation Award - $1000)

Jose Calderon Fati (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award - $2000)

Pechquinco Paola Passalaqua Hucke (Rosita and Nicolas Haoa Haoa Award - $2000)


Lafquen Passalacqua Hucke (Fraternal Order of Moai Ohana Award – $1000)

Pamina Olivares Paoa (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award – $2500)

Oscar Pakomio Jara (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award - $2000)

Pechquinco Passalaqua Hucke (Easter Island Foundation Award - $2000)

Tiare de la Puente Bernarcer (Friends of Rapa Nui Award - $2000) 

Jose Calderon Fati (Easter Island Foundation Award - $2000)

Kena Tepano Riroroko (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award - $2000)

Taniera Ika Guldman (Easter Island Foundation Award - $1500) 

Ghislaine Tepano Tepano (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award - $2000)


Lafquen Passalacqua Hucke (Fraternal Order of Moai Award – $3000

Pamina Olivares Paoa (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award – $2500)

Laura Tarita Alarcon Rapu (Ananda Foundation/Sheree Lipton Award – $1000)

Cecilia Hormazabal Araki (Mildred R. Donoghue Award – $2500)

Rafael Simón Paoa Rapu (Brian Scothorne Award – $2000 and Ananda Foundation/Sheree Lipton Award – $1000)


Rafael Simón Paoa Rapu (EIF Award – $2000)

Laura Tarita Alarcon Rapu (Fraternal Order of Moai Award – $3000)

Mauricio Tamaru Hey Salas (EIF Directors Award – $2000)

Barbara Gaete Tuki (Mildred R. Donoghue Award – $2500)

Tavake Riroroco Cabezas (Mildred R. Donoghue Award – $2500)

Merahi  Atam Lopez (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award -$2500)

Cecilia Hormazabal Araki (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award – $2000)

Tiare Carolina de la Puente Bernacer (EIF  Special Award – $2000)


Vaitiare Tucki Rengifo (Fraternal Order of Moai Award – $2000)

Merahi  Atam Lopez (Fraternal Order of Moai Tangata Manu Award – $2500)

Cecilia Hormazabal Araki (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award – $2000)

Tavake Maria Consuelo Riroroco Cabezas (Mildred R. Donoghue Award- $2500)

Barbara Gaete Tuki (Mildred R. Donoghue Award – $2500)


Tavake Maria Consuelo Riroroco Cabezas (Mildred R. Donoghue Award- $2500)

Barbara Gaete Tuki (Mildred R. Donoghue Award – $2500)

Tamaru Pakarati Gonzalez (EIF Award – $2000)

Ana Huki Fuentes (Fraternal Order of Moai Award – $2000)


Tiare Carolina de la Puente Bernacer (EIF  Award – $3000)

Jose Mario Fati Tepano (EIF Award – $3000)


Juana Luna Atamu (Weigand Award – $2000)

Alan Tepano Haoa (Directors Award – $3000)

Maria Eugenia Huke Fuentes (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award – $3000)

Rutiranghi Tuki Paoa (EIF Award – $3000)


Juana Luna Atamu (Weigand Award – $2000)

Ioan Haumoana Soler Hotu (Weigand Award – $2000)

Antonio Fernando Munoz Tuki (Directors Award – $3000)

Viviana Ana Hereveri Figueroa (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award – $3000)

Akivi Hanga-Ho’onu Atan Soto (EIF Award – $3000)


Juana Luna Atamu (Weigand Award – $2000)

Ioan Haumoana Soler Hotu (Weigand Award – $2000)

Tiare Aguilera Hey (Directors Award – $2000)

Daniela Macarena Araki Gonzales (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award – $2000)

Antonio Fernando Munoz Tuki (EIF Award – $2000)


Juana Luna Atamu (Weigand Award – $2000)

Ioan Haumoana Soler Hotu (Weigand Award – $2000)

Noelani Rapahango Lagos (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award – $2000)

Tahira Edmunds (Nicolas Haoa Haoa Sr. Award – $2000)


Ioan Haumoana Soler Hotu (Weigand Award – $2000)


Alberto Patricio Genkowsky (EIF Award – $2000)


Alfonso Rapu Cardinale (EIF Award – $2000)

For more information about the EIF Scholarship Program or to make a donation, please contact us or download the form below:

scholarships “at”

Easter Island Foundation P.O. Box 6774 Los Osos CA 93412