New Scholarship to Support Computer Science Majors

February 07, 2018


  • William Thacker and Joyce Martin have established a new endowment fund, called the Thacker Computer Sciences Scholarship for computer science majors.
  • Thacker taught computer science for more than 35 years.

ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA – A long-time Winthrop University computer science educator will continue to be a champion for future students of the Department of Computer Science and Quantitative Methods.

William Thacker and wife Joyce Martin have created an endowment fund that will support an annual scholarship designated for computer science majors.

Thacker served as a computer science professor from August 1983 to December 2018 with much of his research highlighting the intersection of computer science, mathematics and engineering. He also dedicated himself to a number of university committees and was heavily involved in student success. During his career, he ensured students participated in the annual Association for Computer Machinery (ACM) International Collegiate Programming Contest. In 2017, one of the Winthrop teams placed second.

“He showed immense care towards his students’ success throughout his career. By establishing this scholarship he hopes to continue to make a difference in the education of future computer science majors,” Martin said.

The couple created the endowment as a commitment to providing educational support to the computer science department for years to come. There are three variations of undergraduate computing degrees: computer science (CSCI), computer information systems (CIFS) and web application design computer science.

Stephen Dannelly, chair and associate professor of the Department of Computer Science and Quantitative Methods, said the program prepares graduates to go into a number of fields and to have successful careers, but student support is needed before they even reach graduation.

“Many current students face significant financial barriers to completing their coursework. This scholarship will assist students with academic ability in overcoming economic difficulties,” Dannelly said.

The scholarship will be available to Winthrop students for the 2020 school year.

For more information on this scholarship or the Winthrop Scholarship program, contact the Division of University Advancement at 803/323-2275.

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