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Elon students pie their professors for a good cause

A yearly occurrence at a spring College Coffee, the opportunity to smash whipped cream pies in professors’ faces helps a service fraternity raise money for local schoolchildren.

Assistant professor of physics Chris Richardson gets a face full of whipped cream during the Pie Your Professor event at College Coffee.

Elon students eagerly lined up at College Coffee on May 6 not only for breakfast pastries and Phoenix Blend, but also for the chance to pop a professor with a whipped cream pie. 

Co-ed service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega holds the Pie Your Professor event every spring during one of the final College Coffees of the semester, and it again drew a crowd of students who were more than happy to shell out a couple bucks for a chance at some sugary vengeance following a year of tough classes. 

All the money Alpha Phi Omega raised went to Classroom Closet, a local non-profit dedicated to helping Alamance County teachers buy school supplies for children who might not be able to afford them. This year, Pie Your Professor netted about $130 for the cause. 

Kyle Altmann, associate professor of physics and chair of the Department of Physics, smiles after being pied.

“It’s fun. I think [students] have a blast with it,” said Chris Richardson, an assistant professor of physics and first-time participant. “I’m glad they came out for it. It’s for a good cause, too.” 

Richardson noted that students didn’t seem shy about stepping up and plastering professors in whipped cream. Sophomore Maria Temming certainly didn’t hesitate. 

“This was amazing. … I think there’s just kind of this inherent fun and hilarity in being able to pie an authority figure, someone that you see in the classroom every day,” the physics and creative writing double major said. “I got to pie a few of my own professors in the face. And I got to pie a couple people on behalf of other people. So that was pretty fun.” 

Temming is a member of Alpha Phi Omega and says the service fraternity routinely volunteers with Classroom Closet. She was excited the group had found another way to support local educators. 

As for her own teachers? 

“I think it really shows a great connection with the students,” Temming said. “This isn’t the sort of thing that could happen at a school where you’re taking classes in an auditorium of 200 kids. … The professors who are willing to do it obviously are just so fun-loving and have a great spirit about it. So that makes it really great.” 

Alpha Phi Omega raised about $130 through Pie Your Professor for a local non-profit that helps teachers buy school supplies for students.

Richardson says he announced he’d be part of Pie Your Professor in class, hoping more students would join in. 

“It’s all about students and faculty interacting,” he said. “When they come out here and see their faculty members outside of the classroom, interacting with everyone, it’s great - especially if we have any prospective students out here. They can see that their faculty members are fun and really willing to engage with them. And that’s an important part of being at Elon.”


Philip Jones,
5/6/2014 2:15 PM