Thales College, a new undergraduate institution launching this fall in Wake Forest, N.C., is eagerly preparing to open its doors to its inaugural class. Thales College is a unique institution with a fresh vision for higher ed: rigorous academics and effective professional preparation joined with a commitment to affordability not often found among other higher education options.
During the 2021-22 school year, Thales College debuted its free high school dual-enrollment program. Local high school juniors and seniors enjoyed the opportunity to receive free, transferable college credits while learning from Thales College faculty members. These courses employed the school’s preferred teaching method—Socratic discussion—in order to help students discuss course content at length while developing critical thinking skills. Thales College is preparing to offer dual-enrollment courses again this fall, concurrent with its regular undergraduate degree programs. Interested students are encouraged to apply early, as seats are limited.
The college’s most popular offering beyond the undergraduate program is its unique Summer Institute, a five-day colloquium for high school upperclassmen that has focused on the theme of entrepreneurship thus far but may expand to other topics in the future. Summer Institute participants study topics in entrepreneurial business, enjoy presentations by local entrepreneurs, and take visits to local companies. Students go on a five-day deep-dive into a range of entrepreneurial topics and have the opportunity to speak one-on-one with real entrepreneurs.
Throughout the past school year, Thales College invited the public to attend a variety of workshops on a range of topics. Families heard from guest experts and Thales College faculty members and benefited from in-person demonstrations and interactive webinars. Topics included classical education and leadership, the importance of meaningful work, business and entrepreneurship, and the rigors of engineering.
The school emphasizes rigorous academics, weekly personalized mentorships with professors, daily internships, and a strong focus on character and professional development.Having emerged from its soft launch, Thales College is excited to officially open its doors this fall. The institution offers three degree programs, each with an emphasis on a classical humanities core for all students. Programs include a B.S. in mechanical engineering, a B.A. in entrepreneurial business, and a B.A. in classical education and leadership.
The school emphasizes rigorous academics, weekly personalized mentorships with professors, daily internships (the daily schedule is designed to allow all students to intern at local companies in the afternoons), and a strong focus on character and professional development. Thales College is thus an alternative to the traditional lecture-hall, amenities-focused university experience and aims to help every student develop the wisdom—intellectual ability, meaningful knowledge, moral character, and professional excellence—needed to thrive in life and work.
Thales College’s design and mission are clearly resonating with students near and far, as applications have been submitted from as close as down the street and as far away as Oregon. The school touts affordability as a hallmark of its model, charging a mere $4,000/term tuition. Additionally, it offers a merit-based Founder’s Scholarship to top student applicants and intentionally schedules classes in a way that permits students to work, thus allowing them to pay their way through school rather than accumulating student loan debt.
Thales College is quickly moving to become a robust option in the undergraduate marketplace. The school’s leadership and faculty team are excited to begin educating their first class of undergraduates this fall. A few seats are still available, and interested students may learn more and apply online at ThalesCollege.org.
Alexandra Stroud assists with recruitment and marketing at Thales College.