Novelist James Patterson and World-Renowned Brain Surgeon, Dr. Ben Carson, Collaborate to Support Scholars Attending HBCUs
James Patterson and Dr. Ben Carson, two prolific authors, philanthropists and educational advocates have partnered to provide a scholarship opportunity to further education for students who have already received the prestigious Carson Scholarship award. Patterson has generously committed $600,000 to the pilot program which will be called the Patterson HBCU Scholarship for Carson Scholars. Beginning in 2024, graduating Carson Scholars who plan to attend a Historically Black College or University (HBCU) will have the opportunity to apply for the Patterson HBCU Scholarship for Carson Scholars. Recipients will receive a $5,000 college scholarship with the opportunity to renew for three consecutive years. Carson Scholars are awarded through the Carson Scholars Fund (CSF) based on their academic achievement and commitment to civic responsibility. This scholarship will provide the opportunity for students to receive additional financial assistance to pursue their educational goals.
James Patterson and Dr. Ben Carson, both renowned for their individual life work and philanthropy sat down recently and discussed their mutual passion to inspire children to read and embrace education. After reading an article about Patterson’s commitment to education and the influence his mother and grandmother played in encouraging him to give back, Carson reached out to Patterson regarding a collaboration. Both men grew up in humble circumstances and could have easily fallen between the cracks of society, but they had strong mother figures in their lives who believed in them, encouraged them to educate themselves and solidified the notion that no matter what you have or where you come from, you can prosper and help others.
Dr. Carson and his wife, Candy, established the Carson Scholars Fund (CSF) in 1994 to combat the educational crisis in the United States. Concerned with the alarming statistics they were seeing regarding America’s students’ academic scores compared to their counterparts worldwide, the Carson’s created the scholarship fund and designed it to empower young students to achieve academically and use their knowledge to help others. Over 11,000 Carson Scholarships have been awarded to students as young as fourth grade to encourage a college and educational mindset. The belief is that providing a community of support through recognition and financial reward early in a child’s life will help propel them to a more fulfilling and successful adult life. Patterson, known for his tremendous generosity to provide literacy and educational opportunities, said in a statement, “I’m thrilled to launch this new partnership with the Carson Scholars Fund, a program that understands the value of education and shares my belief in the role literacy plays in bettering the lives of young people, their families, and their communities. I’m looking forward to seeing what these students achieve in the future.”
Dr. and Mrs. Carson added, “James Patterson’s commitment and generosity towards education and literacy is unrivaled. We are grateful that he has chosen to partner with the CSF to further educational opportunities for our scholars who choose to attend a HBCU.”
Eligible Carson Scholars will be provided with the requisite Patterson HBCU Scholarship application and deadlines for consideration. Winners will be announced on May 15, 2024. For more information, visit https://carsonscholars.org/pattersonhbcu/.