James Patterson, best-selling mystery and children’s book author, has established The James Patterson Teacher Education Scholarship Fund to support eight scholarships for USC Rossier School of Education students in the 2013-2014 academic year.
The scholarships have been awarded to eight Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) candidates who aim to teach English-language arts and are passionate about promoting literacy and a love for reading.
Patterson, who is known for his series of Alex Cross and Women’s Murder Club books, among many others, holds The New York Times record for the most best-selling hardcover fiction titles by a single author. He said he wanted to support the USC Rossier program after learning about its stellar standing.
“The quality of the Master of Arts in Teaching program at USC Rossier was very evident to me, so I thought this would be a great opportunity for me to get involved,” he said. “These students have a commitment to literacy, and they will help children to develop a lifelong passion for reading.”
USC Rossier MAT students Lauren Galapate, Dana Ginger, Hannah Hudson, Jason Huynh, Samantha Niman, Harley Shine, Jeanny Tang and Constance Wong were selected to receive scholarships this year and were awarded $6,000 each in support of their studies for the upcoming academic year.
“We are grateful for Mr. Patterson’s support of these exceptional students who represent the next generation of high-quality educators and share his commitment to improving literacy and learning for all students,” said Dean Karen Symms Gallagher.
Patterson and his wife, Susan, are longtime advocates for literacy and education who have funded teacher education scholarships at Vanderbilt University, University of Wisconsin, Michigan State University, Howard University, Florida Atlantic University, Manhattan College and Appalachian State University.
In addition to authoring children’s books and supporting scholarships for future teachers at schools of education around the country, Patterson promotes reading through his website, ReadKiddoRead.com, which donates thousands of books to schools and aims to get children excited about reading.