Mike and Judy Thompson ’71
With more than 14 million students enrolled in public universities in the United States – and with 44 million college graduates struggling to overcome student loan debt – affording higher education is a top concern for current and aspiring undergraduate students. While national merit scholarships and financial need grants provide access to higher education for thousands of students, many do not meet the award criteria and are left with unstable funding.
This is the problem Judy Thompson ’71 and her husband, Mike, noticed. Through their friends and colleagues, they saw eager and dedicated college students struggle to pay for education. Unable to secure national, federal, or state merit scholarships and grants, they ended up applying for student loans. The couple, knowing how critical education can be for personal and professional success, wondered how they could support more of these middle-income students.
The opportunity came at Judy’s alma mater. After she graduated from UNC Greensboro in 1971 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, Judy embarked on her own successful career. After working at a CPA firm, she joined the accounting department of a textile manufacturer and rose through the ranks to controller. She later entered a Fortune 500 industrial manufacturing company, where she served as the accounting manager until retirement. She is now an active volunteer, supporting local communities and national organizations with her husband.
Judy and Mike credit the education she received at UNCG’s Bryan School of Business and Economics as a major contributor to many of their successes. In 2019, they established the Judy and Mike Thompson Scholarship Endowment to support students enrolled in any of the school’s 11 undergraduate degree programs.
“We hope,” says Judy, “to help future generations of students with the cost of college so they can achieve the strong foundational education they need to build their careers and their lives.”
Judy and Mike Thompson’s generosity is guaranteed to support generations of business students to come. Set to be fully funded by Fall 2019, the Thompsons’ scholarship will be part of the next chapter in the Bryan School of Business and Economics’ transformative history.
Story by Michelle Danner-Groves, Donor Relations
Endowments provide donors with opportunities to create living legacies and touch the lives of future generations.