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The JW Patterson Foundation is a non-profit 501c3 organization dedicated to providing opportunities in the fields of speech, debate, and leadership to talented high school and college students who would otherwise be excluded due to financial need.
It is an avenue for those who acquired a world view of problem-solving through forensics, debate, and leadership to provide equal opportunity for future leaders.
The Patterson Fellows Program
Our mission is to promote the academic study of persuasion, debate, and public speaking, the major instruments for making decisions resolving differences in a free society.
To this end, the Foundation's primary goal is the enhancement of academic training in the practice of debate on both the intercollegiate and inter-school levels. In addition, the Foundation seeks to promote leadership training for both college and high school student leaders.
Our founder, Dr. J.W. Patterson, strongly believes in the contribution that training in public speaking plays in leadership roles and has devoted his entire career to the instruction of students from all across the country in the field of speech and debate.
He has received hundreds of testimonials over the years from former students who attest that the training they received in debate and public speaking both strengthened their leadership skills and helped better prepare them for their chosen professions.
Many of these individuals have cited their speech and debate experience as played a critical role in their success.
The belief that the study of academic debate along with the application of argumentation and advocacy at debate tournaments is the best way to learn the skills of debate is central to its mission.
We are committed to the philosophy that students best develop these skills by being challenged by a diverse group of advocates and evaluated and critiqued by a critic judge through participation in debate tournaments and other forensic competition.
Unfortunately, many institutions do not provide adequate resources, if any, for these opportunities.
It is our goal, therefore, to promote these skills and do our best to make them available to all students, regardless of income accessibility.
By Bill Smelko (Redlands ’75)Of Counsel, Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch, LLP
Will Smelko (U.C. Berkeley ’11),CEO & Co-Founder:www.ora.organic
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