Thomas J. Shutt Memorial FoundationSupporting the next generation of great storytellers
Thomas was a 2010 graduate of Downingtown East High School who went on to study at the Penn State Schreyer Honors College, graduating in 2014 with degrees in International Business and French and Francophone studies. He rowed crew and was actively involved in the community. Thomas spoke multiple languages and chose to pursue writing as a career upon graduation. By age 24, he had books on the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestseller lists. He was well-known and deeply loved within the international independent author community, and his abrupt physical departure is profoundly felt to this day. Thomas passed away peacefully at age 25 from an unexplained sudden cardiac arrhythmia, while sitting at his laptop working on a new novel. This novel, Iron Tamer, was published posthumously in unfinished form as part of an urban fantasy anthology, with royalties supporting the Foundation. A full list of Thomas’s books are available in digital form on Amazon, with print editions pending. They can be found here.
Help Us Support Future Storytellers
The Foundation currently supports an annual scholarship award for a Downingtown East High School graduating Senior with a passion for writing. Students are encouraged to submit writing samples of their choosing for consideration; screenplays, poetry, prose, fiction, or non-fiction. Following an anonymous and impartial assessment of passion and talent for writing by the Foundation Board, a winner is selected by majority vote each year.
To all of our applicants, thank you for sharing your stories with us and with the world. We appreciate each of you and are honored to be a part of your journey forward in life.
Congratulations to our scholarship recipients!
2018 | Colin Weed with “An End To My Story”
2019 | Nate DeChambeau with “How the Day Was Almost Saved”
2020 | Covid-19 Disruption
2021 | First Place: Quinten Cilea with “Body Of The Deer”
Honorable Mention: Grace Drury with “The Missing Cookie”
Honorable Mention: Jackson McGovern with “The Transcend”
Honorable Mention: Samantha Vaillancourt with “All Hallows Eve”
2022 | Lucy Moore with “The Night of the Elementalists”
2023 | Madisen Phonnathong with “Dancing”