The Public Honors College

SMCM Newsroom

Philanthropists Make Million Dollar Commitment to St. Mary's College


June 3, 2013
Press Release #13-081

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St.Mary’s College of Maryland’s President Joseph R. Urgo announces the receipt of a one million dollar commitment from philanthropists Eveline and William P. Roberts, III. The Roberts Family Financial Aid Endowment is a need-based scholarship fund that will provide annual support to academically talented students attending St. Mary’s College.

“We are deeply appreciative of the Roberts family commitment,” said President Urgo. “St. Mary’s College of Maryland has a historic mission to make an academically rigorous program affordable. The Roberts’ generosity is mission-centered and serves as a tremendous example of the type of public-private partnerships we seek.”

Bob and Eveline Roberts, who reside in Rockville, Md., are parents of Jamie Roberts, graduate of the St. Mary’s College class of 2011 with a degree in economics and a minor in math.  Jamie received the Presidential Merit Award each of her four years at St. Mary’s, and was selected as the college’s 2011 Female Athlete of the Year for her participation on the varsity soccer, basketball, and lacrosse teams. The Roberts supported the college’s Emergency Assistance Fund during Jamie’s tenure on campus. The fund benefitted students struggling with extreme financial difficulties as a result of the 2008 economic downturn. The Roberts and numerous other donors made it possible for hundreds of students to remain in college.

“I am pleased we are able to assist St. Mary’s in its quest to reach out to excellent students who would otherwise not be able to afford the unique experience at St. Mary’s,” said Bob Roberts. Eveline Roberts added, “This gift to St. Mary’s will enable numerous students to have the educational and athletic opportunities our daughter Jamie had.”

"A St. Mary’s liberal arts education prepares its students for future success in a rapidly changing and interconnected world," said Pat Goldsmith, dean of admissions. "An investment in our students is also an investment in our graduates who, like Jamie, will make a positive impact on every community in which they live and work.” Jamie is fulfilling her passion by working as an assistant basketball coach at Catholic University.

The Roberts family commitment is part of a comprehensive initiative by St. Mary’s College to attract new resources for student financial aid and academic programs. In addition to the Roberts’ commitment, a member of the St. Mary’s College of Maryland Board of Trustees, who chooses to remain anonymous, recently committed $250,000 in support of faculty curricular innovation. These funds are designed to assist faculty members as they develop innovative courses and academic programs, and to provide funding for faculty professional development and research opportunities.

Dean of Faculty Beth Rushing commented, “We are so grateful to this board member, whose dedication to the mission of the college will allow us to continually improve our teaching and research enterprises. This faculty support enhances the College’s ability to provide the best possible educational experience for St. Mary’s College students.”