For the second year, Towson University has named eight future teachers as recipients of the James Patterson Teacher Education Scholarships.
The students will receive a $6,000 scholarship each year, as long as they maintain their intention to teach and the academic requirements for the gift. The amount covers 72 percent of in-state tuition and fees, making the Patterson Scholarship one of the most generous in the TU Foundation.
“Towson University is both honored and delighted to have been selected by James Patterson as a beneficiary of Patterson Teacher Education Scholarships,” said Acting President Timothy Chandler. “Such generosity provides exceptional financial support to our students while affirming for them, and for Towson, the importance of great teachers to the schools and school children of the future.”
The students were selected by a committee appointed by College of Education Dean Ray Lorion, based on both need and merit. Applicants submitted, among other information, essays as to why they want to teach, why literacy is important, and how the scholarship can help them.
“We live on Long Island, New York, and were hit with Hurricane Sandy two years ago, and are still trying to recover from that,” wrote one recipient in her application. “We had eight feet of water in our basement and one on our first floor that just ruined everything.”
“Without a firm foundation on education in the early years of elementary school, it is difficult for a student to truly excel in the future,” wrote another. “I want to be able to be that foundation that will help my students succeed in their lives.”
Patterson and his wife, Susan, have gifted teacher preparation scholarships at 19 colleges and universities nationwide; they have also given several other kinds of scholarships to their own alma maters. They selected Towson University last academic year, reaching out to President Maravene Loeschke unsolicited to make the gift offer. The Pattersons liked what they had learned about the TU College of Education’s programs, the Reading Clinic, and Towson’s history as a leader in teacher preparation. The scholarships are awarded to incoming freshmen.
The new cohort brings the total number of Patterson Scholars at Towson to 16.