The James and Lucy Patterson Family Geography Field Trip Endowment was established by Lucy Patterson and family members in 2013. The purpose of the fund is to provide financial assistance to the Department of Geography for field trips and/or scholarship support for geography students to participate in field trips. James Patterson was a regional geography professor at Illinois State University from 1957 to 1986. During his tenure at ISU, he received the first Bone Award for outstanding teacher at ISU and was the recipient of the Illinois Geography Society's Distinguished Geography Education Award. Patterson combined his passions for teaching and travel by organizing and leading cross-disciplinary student field trips. Students were taught in the classroom at a nearby university and then taken into the field to observe firsthand the geographical, biological, historical, and archaeological aspects they were studying.