Montana Ambassador Extraordinaire Peter Rosten and Montana’s MAPS (Media Arts in the Public Schools)

MAPS has provided services for more than 1,000 students; among all of those students, fewer than 10 failed to graduate from high school. The program boasts a reduction in student dropout rates, as well as increases in GPAs, credits attained, and in graduates going to college. All at no cost to the students themselves.

I happened to be at MAPS on the last day of school, and there were many hugs, many tears. Peter Rosten inspired great affection from these kids, but they weren’t intimidated by him. They had no problem teasing him. He was a fascinating blend of gentleness and confidence.

The day I visited the MAPS building, some of the staff gestured me toward the production room, away from Rosten, where I watched a video performed and produced by their students to honor Rosten’s accomplishments. It was called "Everybody Needs Love," and by the time the video was over, there was not a dry eye in the production studio.

By: Russell Rowland

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