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John S. Roberts Foreign Language Scholarship

posted Mar 29, 2018, 8:33 AM by Web Master

The Mt. Abraham Union Middle/High School in Bristol announced today that it has received a $125,000 endowment to fund a scholarship for foreign language students.   A $5,000 scholarship will be awarded annually to a MAUM/HS senior who has completed at least four years of a foreign language and intends to continue foreign language study at a college or university.


The Mt. Abraham Foreign Language Scholarship honors the memory of John S. Roberts, Jr., a foreign language teacher at the Bristol High School and at Middlebury College during the mid 1950’s and early 1960’s.  The endowment is a gift from one of his students, Stephen Gay (BHS Class of 1963) and his wife, Judith of Clinton, CT. Mr. Roberts is remembered by his students as being a true “college prep” teacher, addressing them by “Mr.” and “Miss” and insisting that no English be spoken in his French and German classes.  He is also well remembered for his work ethic, teaching (incredibly!) Latin 1, 2, 3, French 1, 2, 3 and German 1, 2, 3 in 6 class periods 5 days a week. Mr. Roberts directed his students in a number of one act plays in all three languages and was instrumental in getting an audio language laboratory installed at the school, one of the first of its kind in the state. One former student, who called Mr. Roberts “a gifted educator” and his teachings “life changing”, is still using the German he learned from Mr. Roberts in his business some 55 years later. Indeed, Mr. Roberts has left a legacy to be remembered!


ANESU Chief Financial Officer Howard Mansfield commented, “This generous gift provided by a former Bristol High School student and his wife (Stephen and Judith Gay) will continue well into the future to provide an annual scholarship for students from the five town community of Mt. Abraham Union Middle/High School. Representing the school community, I thank the donors for their extreme generosity, but also the story behind the gift. Hearing about John Roberts and his dedication to his students and community was a touching experience for all concerned. It is great to know that his connection with so many students over the years and those who benefited from his teachings attribute to him their learning and success. It is also good to know that due to his teachings, current and future students from Mt. Abraham Union Middle/High School will continue to benefit from his legacy through this generous gift.”


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