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Artists with Big Hearts Help Students with Big Dreams


By John Doherty

Photo by Ron Felton

The Escuela de Educación Especial’s after-school vocational training workshops teach older deaf students jewelry design and crafting skills. The unique silver jewelry made by these young people have become sought after by many discerning shoppers in San Miguel de Allende, not just because they are one-of-a-kind items but because they offer gorgeous quality silver jewelry at a fair price.

As these jewelry pieces become more and more recognized by the community, the students are now being supported by two prominent local artists who are referred to at the school as “Artists with Big Hearts.”

Quite recently, students received a big boost when Susan Page, founder of the San Miguel Writers Conference, invited them to participate in the conference’s Artisans Marketplace. The conference set up a creative presentation to showcase their jewelry, including custom-made San Miguel Writers Conference logo pendants and earrings. Thanks to Page’s guidance, sales at the conference led to a strong demand for the students’ jewelry and the students were the talk of the Artisans Marketplace. Page has not only invited the students back next year but has also invited them to have a presence at the Literary Sala’s monthly meetings at the Posada Hotel de la Aldea.

The other artist with a big heart is Kelley Vandiver, who recently invited the students to participate in Fábrica la Aurora’s monthly Art W alk event by allowing students to present their handmade silver jewelry in his gallery each month. All the proceeds from these sales will benefit the school, ultimately helping the Vocational Training Workshop Jewelry Program to continue providing these students with skills that will help them have a career after graduation.

The next Art Walk at Fábrica La Aurora will take place on Saturday, April 6.

To learn more about Escuela Educación Especial de San Miguel de Allende and its programs, please visit the website


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