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Thelma Davis Thompson Scholarship

Scholarship applications are closed at this time.

Thelma Davis (“Davey”) Thompson was born on Oct. 29, 1919 in Oconto County, Wisconsin. She graduated from Oshkosh State Teachers College and began her teaching career in a one-room schoolhouse near her home in Oconto Falls. She later took a job in Mercer, where she met George G. Thompson, whom she married on November 29, 1941. He affectionately called Thelma, “Davey” and the name stuck with her.

After World War II, the couple settled in Milwaukee and had two children, William and Elizabeth. The family moved to California in 1950. During Thelma’s 25 years in the Cupertino Union School District, she received recognitions as Teacher of the Year. While she excelled in the classroom, her passion for education was extended into the professional community of educators. She served on the contract bargaining teams for Cupertino teachers and was a key negotiator during two teacher strikes. Her leadership was instrumental in establishing teacher rights and improving classroom conditions which still have a positive impact on this award-winning, renowned school district today. She also served as representative to the California Teachers Association State Council.

After Thelma’s retirement, she remained active in the fight for legislation to improve classroom conditions and educational funding. She was an activist before and after retirement on behalf of CTA/NEA and attended several NEA national conventions as a delegate representing California active and retired te4achers. She was a member of the Santa Clara County Political Action Committee, Evergreen Valley Retired Teachers and CTA/NEA Retired Teachers. In her 80s Thelma continued to work the phone bank and walk precincts on behalf of local and state candidates who were “friends of education.” She passed away January 21, 2009 at the age of 89.

“Davey was very proud to be an elementary school teacher and attributed her success to the excellent education and preparation she received from her beloved Oshkosh State Teachers College. It was her hope that this scholarship would financially help UW Oshkosh students who share her passion for elementary age school children’s education to complete the educational requirements necessary to work in the field that meant so much to her.


  1. Applicants must be enrolled as full-time students at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh with a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.0.

  2. Applicants must be accepted into the College of Education and Human Services as elementary education majors at the time of application.

  3. Applicants must demonstrate financial need by submitting the financial aid form currently used by the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh to determine allocation of federal and state grants and loans.


  1. Selection will be made by a committee composed of representatives from the Curriculum and Instruction Department in the College of Education and Human Services.

  2. In the event the conditions in the future shall render impractical or impossible to fulfill the purposes for which this scholarship has been established, the President of the University of Wisconsin Foundation in consultation with the Dean of the College of Education and Human Services shall award scholarships to worthy applicants who most closely fit the above established criteria.

The Award

  1. The value and/or number of awards will be determined annually by the selection committee with the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Foundation and will be based upon income available for this purpose.

  2. The Foundation Board of Directors will distribute income annually, in such proportions as they deem appropriate, in accordance with established Foundation policies. The principal of the fund will be conserved perpetually.

  3. The award will be credited against the recipient’s next tuition obligation at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.

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