Saltz works with ELON Academy

School of Communications faculty member Staci Saltz has spent her summer instructing Alamance-Burlington high school students as part of the ELON Academy. Saltz is leading a course called Technology Applications, in which she teaches students how to communicate through different forms of technology, be they cameras and photography, the Internet or e-mail. (However, it’s not a course, she warns, that discusses the use of instant messaging.)

Her hope, she said, is that students understand how to use, for example, a personal Web page or photographic imagery to correspond effectively with the wider world.

Aside from teaching the basic skills needed to design a Web site or operate a video camera, Saltz is also instilling life lessons for the students’ future careers. One point, in particular, she has stressed is the importance of maintaining a professional tone in e-mails, an often overlooked rule of etiquette by younger students who are more contented typing in abbreviations and shorthand.

“I want to have them be comfortable with technology and be successful with technology,” Saltz said. “The big thing is to get them comfortable with technology and to communicate with technology in a professional way.”

The ELON Academy is a year-round enrichment program for talented high school students who, while academically gifted, may not be considering college as a future option because of dire financial circumstances. The initiative involves three intensive four-week summer residential experiences at Elon, where rising 10th-, 11th- and 12th-graders receive instruction in math, English, social studies, science and technology.

Saltz, who teaches four days a week, is participating in her first year with ELON Academy students. She said she has enjoyed helping the students develop and mature, and she plans on continuing with ELON Academy for at least two more years.

“The bottom line is that this is a fantastic program,” Saltz said. “I’m really excited about being a part of it. I’m honored about being a part of it. The scholars are motivated, bright and so eager to learn. I think it’s fantastic that Elon has chosen to take on this type of project.”


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