New Old Saybrook Scholarship to be Awarded This Year
Last year the Old Saybrook High School Class of 1971 Scholarship Committee announced the formation of a new scholarship in memory of former teacher Anne Peterson. Now, the committee is announcing it has met the fundraising goal.
The Anne Peterson Memorial Scholarship will be awarded for the first time to a member of the Old Saybrook High School class of 2023, according to Paul Koches, a member of the class of ‘71 and an organizer of the scholarship.
“The scholarship will be awarded each year to a graduating senior going on to college, technical, or trade school who demonstrates high goal setting, strong work ethic, and exemplary leadership. Applicants must also submit an essay on the importance of studying history,” a press release stated.
Peterson was a beloved history and social studies teacher at the school for over 20 years who former students remember not only for her skill as a teacher but also for her kindness and warmth. When members of the class of 1971 gathered to celebrate their 50th reunion last year–delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic–Koches said the idea of starting a scholarship in her name was met with enthusiasm.
Koches said when the scholarship was initially formed there was a goal set of raising $30,000. “With the final donation push we got to about $40,000,” Koches said.
Koches said that besides the members of the class of 1971 the local business community was also instrumental in raising the money. Koches said that of the 70-80 businesses that advertised in the 1971 Old Saybrook High School yearbook about 30 are still in business today. Koches said the scholarship committee reached with a message congratulating them on still being in business 50 years later and asking for donations. “We said, hey, if you liked us back then you’ll love us now! A lot of businesses were very generous,” said Koches.
Koches said that the committee will be receiving the final check in a matter of weeks. “It’s a celebratory moment,” said Koches.
According to a press release the fund will be managed through the town school system.
“Mrs. Peterson taught history in a way that really made history relevant. This was a great way to honor her,” Koches said.