This thesis investigates a high school scholarship program created by a bioreserve in Yucatan Mexico for local Maya-speaking students. The scholarship program experienced difficulty retaining scholarship students and placing students in jobs after graduating high school. This thesis uses ethnographic and historical research to understand why the scholarship program was not as successful as expected. The main conclusion of this thesis is that the scholarship program unintentionally created division among students and the community. Future research and project development should focus on creating educational programs that engage whole communities and use education as a means to an end, not an end in itself.