Logo design by UNK Thompson Scholar graduate, Amy Markham
Mission: The UNK Thompson Scholars Learning Community provides multidimensional living and learning opportunities that foster student engagement and promote academic, civic, and social development to prepare students for lives as responsible citizens in a diverse society.
TSLC Vision: Live, Learn, Connect, Succeed
• Provide students with a social and academic support system.
• Offer opportunities for student growth and development.
• Organize programming with campus and community resources.
• Provide additional academic interaction and resources.
• Assist with transition to college and persistence to graduation.
The TSLC freshmen are housed together at UNK in Mantor Hall. Living together during the transition to college provides students the ability to build relationships alongside peers with the same academic and scholarship expectations. Sophomore, junior, and senior Thompson Scholars do not have a living requirement as part of the TSLC, but may be provided optional housing with Mantor Hall with fellow Thompson Scholars.
Shared academic experiences provide Thompson Scholars the opportunity to develop intellectually with one another. Freshmen and sophomore Thompson Scholars take a number of classes together depending on academic level, including a freshmen seminar course taught by the TSLC staff. Freshmen are provided with detailed academic plans of upcoming TSLC classes to help them plan accordingly. Classes offered by the TSLC vary from semester to semester, but have included general studies courses from all four academic colleges at UNK.
Besides the associations made through the living community and shared classes, Thompson Scholars are provided other opportunities to connect at UNK. All freshmen Thompson Scholars are assigned a mentor who is academically a sophomore or above; these mentors are also Thompson Scholars who live within the Mantor Hall community. TSLC Mentors play an integral support role in giving academic advice, connecting scholars to UNK resources, and building relationships.
The Thompson Scholars Learning Community also delivers social and academic programming for the community members; some programs are required for students based on academic level. Using the TSLC mission as a guide, the TSLC staff intentionally plans social events and educational sessions that promote student engagement, leadership development, and involvement at UNK and beyond. Outside of the TSLC Program offerings, all Thompson Scholars are also invited to participate in the student organization, Thompson Scholars United (TSU), which helps all Thompson Scholars stay linked across academic levels at UNK.
Thompson Scholars achieve success individually and as members of a community. Through learning community expectations, students practice fundamental skills such as time management, social development, academic success habits, professional communication, cultural awareness and civic responsibility. Opportunities with the TSLC such as serving as a Peer Academic Leader (PAL) for the freshmen seminar classes, guiding freshmen as a TSLC Mentor, and developing programs as officers in Thompson Scholars United (TSU) continue to foster leadership skills of Thompson Scholars.
Fellow Thompson Scholars, mentors, peer academic leaders, staff, faculty, and administrators work collaboratively to support and challenge Thompson Scholars at UNK. As a result, the students in the UNK TSLC have achieved higher grade point averages than the UNK undergraduate grade point average each semester since the start of the TSLC Program. Additionally, statistics show that Thompson Scholars have remained enrolled in college and have graduated at higher rates than their non-Thompson peers at UNK.