Adventures in Leadership builds skills, creates experiences for Elon's newest students
Sixty-one incoming students took part this summer in Adventures in Leadership, a New Student and Transition Programs First-Year Summer Experience.
Dozens of incoming Elon students this summer continued a tradition that stretches back two decades as they took part in Adventures in Leadership, a program that helps craft leadership skills while preparing them to begin at Elon this year.
Two cohorts that included 61 students traveled to West Virginia to take part in this Elon First-Year Summer Experience, one of four summer programs for incoming students offered at Elon. The six-day Adventures in Leadership program is sponsored by Campus Recreation and the Center for Leadership and was offered twice in July — July 10-15 and then July 17-22.
Adventures in Leadership provides outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, rock climbing and white-water rafting. Through the experiences, students develop leadership skills as they work together in teams to better understand themselves and transition to Elon.
The adventure-based learning program begins on Elon’s campus. After spending a night at Elon and discussing leadership and communication skills, participants engage in the Elon Challenge Course before traveling to Minden, West Virginia. There, students went rock climbing, hiking, whitewater rafting and even worked collaboratively to cook a meal over a campfire.
“I never thought I could change my perspective on college, create forever lasting bonds, feel more prepared for college than ever and have an unbelievable experience all in six days,” said participant Anna Holt.
After three and a half days in West Virginia, the last day of the program was spent at Elon where participants enjoyed a brunch and reflect on the week's experiences.
Though the program lasted less than a week, the impact was enough to leave incoming first-years like Franky Storm with a lasting impression.
“Not only did AIL help me get acclimated to what the next four years will hold, it established friendships and gave me a taste of what the culture's really like at Elon,” said Storm. “I can confidently say AIL was the best experience of my entire life and every incoming student should sign up.”
This year's student facilitators, all AIL alumni, were Taylor Cassidy, Mikey Gibeley, Marley Goetz, Jack Hartmann, Hanna Kraus, Madi Norton, Lyn Nelson, and Alex Pfeiff. The student coordinator who supervised the participants and facilitators was Meredith Piatt. The faculty and staff advisors were Dana Carnes, Larry Mellinger, Evan Small, and Carol Smith.
For more information, please visit the Adventures in Leadership website.