Spartans of UD: Matt Tompkins

Nov 18, 2020

Spartans of UD highlights what makes University of Dubuque special – the people.

Matt Tompkins, of Dubuque, Iowa, is a senior double majoring in theatre and philosophy and ethics. A nontraditional student, he also teaches a World View I class.

1. Why did you decide to attend University of Dubuque?

“I was looking for a local university that offered a theatre or fine and performing arts program. I interviewed with Greg Wolf, director of theatre at University of Dubuque, and was really impressed with his teaching philosophy. That convinced me UD was the right place for me. And, the facilities are amazing!”

2. What do you enjoy most about double majoring in theatre and philosophy and ethics as a nontraditional student? 

“I've found the two disciplines to be fairly complementary of one another. I love thinking about the philosophy of life the character I'm playing might have. And theater is in many ways a reflection of the philosophy of the times. For example, Theater of the Absurd from the mid-twentieth century has close ties to the philosophical theory of existential nihilism.”

3. Not only are you a nontraditional student, but you are also an adjunct at University of Dubuque. What do you hope your students will take away from your World View Seminar I class? 

“I really enjoy teaching. My biggest hope for students today is to be aware of all the external pressures and scripts that attempt to influence them and to consciously choose their own path. We are our choices and everyone should 'do their own think'.”

4. What advice do you have for other nontraditional students?

“My advice for other nontraditional students is to take advantage of this gem of a university. President Bullock along with the leadership and the faculty have created a truly remarkable learning environment, with outstanding facilities. I would highly encourage nontraditional students to explore it.”

5. Where is your favorite spot on campus? Why? 

“I love the music practice rooms in Heritage Center. It's quiet, and I can get some work done or take a break and play the piano or rehearse.”