Maria is the child of a young single mother, who sells oranges at the local market. She has one younger brother and one younger sister. Maria was unable to pay for high school - until her superb academic record and leadership ability earned her a scholarship to Daraja Academy. Her dream is to study hard and become an agricultural engineer in order to help people who are starving and malnourished. She strongly believes in the power of education, and she wants to work hard to fight corruption and tribalism in Kenya when she is older. "To me, education is power," Maria says.