Dr. Matthew R. Thompson
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.
Thompson believes deeply in the KWU tagline, “The Power of And”. He supports student involvement in arts and athletics, campus and community events, internships and volunteering. 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 allowing students to thrive. These efforts have been recognized through inclusion as a “College of Distinction” and the “Best College for Employment in Kansas”.
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, Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference, and the National Association of Collegiate Esports. He was the 2018 vice-chair of 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 is an Eagle Scout and served as a page in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Thompson and his wife, Jennifer, and their daughter enjoy traveling together as a family, participating in all aspects of campus life, and attending the many cultural arts opportunities in the Salina community.