AMHERST, Mass. - Graduates from Hudson High School who want to attend the University of Massachusetts Amherst will be eligible for scholarships funded by Robert P. Thimot’s $1.5 million pledge to the University. Beginning in 2024, students from Marlboro (MA) High School will also be eligible for the scholarships. Thimot’s pledge was made as part of Campaign UMass, the University’s five-year effort to raise $125 million and expand its base of support among alumni and the public.
Thimot, a retired businessman who lives in Reno, Nevada, sent the first of 20 annual installments of $75,000 to the UMass Foundation at the end of December 1996. The money will be put into a fund, along with matching funds from the state, and income derived from it will provide for the scholarships. Thimot graduated from UMass in 1953 with an engineering degree, and later went on to build a 600-employee lock manufacturing company, which he sold prior to his retirement.
The fund is to be called the Robert P. Thimot Scholarship Endowment. Under the terms of the agreement with the University worked out last year, half of the earnings are to be used to offer 50-percent scholarships to students from Hudson High School who wish to attend UMass, with a preference for those seeking degrees in engineering. For the first years, 25 percent of the earnings of the fund will to be used for a specialized scholarship fund and the remaining 25 percent will go to several private charities.
Beginning on June 30, 2024, half the earnings will continue to go to scholarships for Hudson High School graduates and the other half will go to Marlboro High School graduates who want to attend UMass.
Thimot and his wife now travel extensively and he is an avid fisherman. He said he agreed to give the University the money because it allows him to help both his alma mater during Campaign UMass, and high school students from his hometown.