CASTINE — Just in time for her 95th birthday, Maine Maritime Academy’s historic schooner Bowdoin has a new skipper.
Emma Hathaway arrived at MMA on Tuesday and took over as captain of the school’s historic sail training vessel. The ship is currently undergoing a major rehabilitation at the Lyman-Morse shipyard in Camden.
A licensed master and an educator, Hathaway has had ties to Midcoast Maine since she was a teen.
According to the statement announcing her appointment, Hathaway fell in love with sailing at the age of14 while on a three-day sail out of Rockport on the schooner Timberwind. For the next two summers, she worked on the boat as an assistant cook. Over the following 15 years, she would serve as a crew member on the Baltimore clipper Pride of Baltimore II, the schooner Spirit of Massachusetts and the brig Niagara.
More recently, Hathaway captained the Seaward, out of San Francisco Bay, and the sail training vessel Unicorn, sailing with an all-woman crew from Connecticut through the Saint Lawrence Seaway to the Great Lakes. She has worked as a trainer, mentor and teacher on the Ocean Classroom Foundation’s schooners Seaward and Lynx and has taught US Sailing curriculum at the Olympic Circle Sailing Club in San Francisco Bay.
Between 2013 and 2015, Hathaway was captain of the 96-foot, three-masted staysail schooner Makani Olu, centerpiece of the Kailana Program, an ocean-oriented experiential treatment and education program based in the Hawaiian Islands.
“I am very excited to be part of the next phase of Bowdoin’s sail training history,” Hathaway said in the statement announcing her new appointment. “This is the perfect job for me, combining education with sailing.”