World traveler John Roberts shares his stories with CSU

Veronica Baas

John Roberts returned to Colorado State University to share his travel experiences with students at Tales From Afar. The event was a public lecture hosted by the international studies program.

Roberts, previously an international studies professor at CSU in 1998, was a member of the Peace Corps and also traveled with the State Department.


Since he has returned to his hometown in Fort Collins, Colorado he opened the Global Village Museum of Arts and Cultures in May of 2011. The Global Village Museum is a nonprofit, educational museum created to share the arts and artifacts from cultures around the world. It is located at 200 W. Mountain Ave. and is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Collegian sat down with Roberts before his lecture to talk about his experiences.

How many languages have you learned?

I have learned nine. I haven’t used them for a long time but I found out by traveling that it’s all in your brain, like a computer. So when you get back into the environment of the language it all comes back, maybe 80 to 90 percent of it comes back, it’s just amazing.

Where is your favorite place that you have traveled to?

I think Botswana is one of my favorite places, in southern Africa. I like the climate, I love the people, I like the wild animals. It’s a very stable, honest, non-corrupt democratic government.

After visiting so many different places around the world what has brought you back to Fort Collins?

Well I’ve lived in 19 different countries, I’ve traveled to 187. When you’re old and crotchety like I am, after being gone for 40 years, it’s nice to be home and living here.

What do you hope students will take away from your presentation?

I think we can share some stories and I can share some of the adventures that I’ve had, which are pretty exciting. I think I’m trying to show that the world is a very large place but a very small place. People are the same no matter what their culture, language or background is. We share a lot as human beings and we share the planet so it is important that we understand each other.


Collegian Reporter Veronica Baas can be reached at or on Twitter @vcbaas.