President Thompson's Biography

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Matthew R. Thompson, Ph.D.

19th President of Kansas Wesleyan University

Dr. Matthew R. Thompson was appointed by the Kansas Wesleyan University Board of Trustees as the 19th President of the university in January 2013 and officially began his presidency of Kansas Wesleyan on April 15, 2013.

As president, Thompson has championed academic excellence and encourages innovation in scholarship and teaching. He has launched initiatives to build interdisciplinary strength around global challenges, expanded opportunities for experiential learning, and stimulated the introduction and expansion of the Wesleyan Experience, Wesleyan Journey, and Wesleyan Heritage programs.

Committed to delivering the promise of a valued higher education, Thompson has focused Kansas Wesleyan on pushing students to be their best and to meet their calling in life. Through collaboration and partnerships, Kansas Wesleyan is quickly developing a reputation as an environment devoted to student success.

Prior to coming to KWU, Thompson served as the vice president for advancement at Florida Southern College. Beginning his career at his alma mater, Mercer University, Thompson has served in a variety of administrative posts. He has a broad base of experience including advancement and fundraising, student life, academic curricula development and alumni and community relations.

Thompson serves on several boards and committees including Kansas Independent Colleges Association, Associated Colleges of Central Kansas, Up With People, National Association of Schools and Colleges of The United Methodist Church, and the Salina Area Chamber of Commerce.

Thompson earned his Bachelor of Arts in Communication & Theatre Arts and a Master of Business Administration from Mercer University, Macon, Georgia. His Doctor of Philosophy in Higher Education Administration is from the University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia.

Thompson also was an Eagle Scout and served as a page in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Thompson and his wife, Jennifer, have a young daughter and enjoy traveling together as a family, participating in all aspects of campus life, and attending the many cultural arts opportunities in the Salina community.