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Long-Time Professor, Family Establish Permanent Scholarship

Bob Green and president Michael Schneider

Bob Green with MC president Michael Schneider

Reflecting on all the relationships he formed during his time as a professor at McPherson College, Bob Green, emeritus professor of English, was inspired to establish a permanent scholarship for first-generation students in need of financial assistance who attend McPherson College.

“I gained a lot as a teacher at McPherson College,” Green said. “I worked with people of faith and skill. I have gratitude for the people I worked with while I was there.”

Green, who lives in Wichita, was assistant professor of English for 27 years before retiring in 1993. His wife, Gayla, also worked as a library assistant in Miller Library and earned a bachelor’s degree in English from McPherson College in 1983. Green said, due, in part, to her critical management of their finances, he and his family realized it was within their resources to fund a scholarship and worked with the McPherson College Advancement Office to establish the Bob and Gayla Green Endowed Scholarship to honor his wife who passed away last year.

“As a professor, I always encouraged my students to think,” Green said. “My career was over by the time Siri and Alexa came on the scene, but they can’t answer questions like ‘why am I here?’ You have to do some thinking about that.”

He said that some of the most memorable times for him were when students would come back to campus, sometimes after as long as 20 years, and tell him they still remember what he taught them and how it made a difference in their lives.

“Professor Green literally taught me how to write. My writing abilities have been foundational to my career,” said Ted Bray, a 1992 McPherson College graduate. Bray, a marketing executive with over 25 years of experience, has held leadership roles with prominent technology companies, including Accenture, Oracle, and AT&T.

“There were many times, especially during the Vietnam War when issues were raised on campus, that I was able to sit down with students and have a dialogue and real conversations,” Green said. “I had the opportunity to build relationships over the years that I value.”

It was not surprising to colleagues, like Kim Stanley, professor of English, that Green would find a way to continue to support McPherson College students long after he left. Stanley had the office next to Green’s and has known him for the 32 years she has been at the college.

“It’s just like Bob to think of yet another way to be useful to students,” she said. “Bob was always the quiet person everyone could rely on to listen and provide carefully considered advice. He took a strong personal interest in his students.”

With the endowed scholarship, Bob and Gayla Green’s legacy will continue to support McPherson College students into the future.