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 Who's Who

Faculty and Staff

 Terry Tomasek - Director of the Elon Academy and Assistant Professor of
 Education at Elon University
 Mooney 302 E
 2108 Campus Box
 Elon, NC 27244
(336) 278-5854

Dr. Tomasek received a Master of Science degree in Biology from Marshall University and her PhD in Science Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She teaches math and science methods in Elon's Teacher Education department. Dr. Tomasek also works with High School students across the Piedmont of North Carolina on several reptile and amphibian projects. Her current herpetology-related research interests are aquatic turtle population studies and how attitude toward snakes is associated with interpretations of snake-related encounters. She is an active member of the NC Herpetological Society and the NC Partners for Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (NCPARC).

 John Pickett - Elon Academy Assistant Director of Scholar Support
 Mooney 302 D
 2108 Campus Box
 Elon, NC 27244
 O: (336) 278-6110
 C: (336) 279-0980

John Pickett hails from the farming community of Silk Hope, NC. He graduated in 2003 from Elon University with a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and a bachelor's degree in Special Education (K-12). John joined the Elon Academy in 2011. His primary responsibility within the program is to provide comprehensive and cohesive support for scholars and their families during the academic year and during the summer residential program. John supervises Elon Academy's Academic Coaching Program, College Access Mentors, and the Elon Academy Ambassadors Program. He also teaches in the summer program and leads scholar recruitment initiatives. From 2003 until joining the Elon Academy staff, John worked in Alamance and Orange county public schools as both a teacher and co-director of an award-winning after-school tutoring program. In 2007 he was one of Alamance County's top finalists for county teacher of the year.

 Jenni Johnson - Elon Academy Assistant Director of Senior Support and Student
 Mooney 302 C
 2108 Campus Box
 Elon, NC 27244
 (336) 278-6111
Jenni Johnson is originally from New Bern, NC, but has called Durham, NC home since ninth grade. She graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Afro-American Studies. In 2013 she graduated from North Carolina State University with a master’s degree in Counselor Education with an emphasis in college counseling and student development. Jenni brings college advising and residence life experience to Elon Academy, having worked as a college adviser with the Carolina College Advising Corps and a Residence Director at NCSU during her education. Jenni assists with the coordination of the Transitions to College Program, the College Success Program, and the Alumni Program by providing summer and year-round support senior scholars and some first-year college students. She is responsible for recruiting and supervising Summer Mentors. In her spare time, Jenni enjoys spending time with family and watching sports, especially football and basketball. 
 Princess King - Assistant Director of College Success
 Mooney 302 F
 2108 Campus Box
 Elon, NC 27244
 (336) 278-6285

Princess King, native of Fayetteville, NC, is a graduate from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte where she earned her bachelors degree in Psychology in 2008. In 2011 she completed a Masters of Education in Counseling and Personnel Services from the University of Maryland College Park where her concentration was urban school counseling. Princess brings her passion for mentoring and college access, having previously served as the Assistant Director for Minority Student Support at UNC Charlotte.  As the new Assistant Director for College Success, Princess will work primarily with College Scholars to aid in their successful transition from High school to college. In her free time, Princess enjoys attending church, spending time with family, watching Netflix, and shopping.

Kim Pyne - Assistant Director of Academic Programs at Elon Academy and Assistant Professor of English and Education at Elon University
Alamance 305 B
2338 Campus Box
Elon, NC 27244
(336) 278-5732

Kim Pyne received a bachelor's degree in English education from Elon College, a master's degree in English from Purdue University, and a Ph.D. in Education (Curriculum, Culture, and Change) from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A former teacher in the Alamance-Burlington Schools, she now serves as an Assistant Professor of English and Education at Elon, preparing the next generation of English teachers, as well as teaching courses in composition and literature. After wearing many different hats for Elon Academy (from teacher to academic coach supervisor), she now oversees the academic side of the program and works closely with faculty during summers and year-round class and projects. Outside of Elon, she is a wildlife educator and volunteer staff member at the Conservators' Center, specializing in wolves and working with many other species including small and great cats. 

Katie LaPlante - Assistant Director of Counseling and Family Programs at Elon Academy
Mooney 302 B
2105 Campus Box
Elon, NC 27244
(336) 278-6109

Katie LaPlante is a graduate of Elon University, with a degree in Psychology. She earned a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from Loyola University in Maryland. Additionally, she is a Licensed Psychologist in the state of North Carolina at the Licensed Psychological Associate (LPA) level. Katie coordinates family programs for both current and alumni families, and oversees the family council. She also provides counseling support and referrals to community resources to scholars and their families.

 Catherine Parsons - Program Coordinator at Elon Academy
 Mooney 302
 2108 Campus Box
 Elon, NC 27244
 (336) 278-6109

Catherine Parsons is a graduate of Elon University, with a degree in Psychology. Though she grew up in Kansas and Asia, she moved to North Carolina her ninth grade year and graduated from Western Alamance High School. She loves North Carolina weather so much she decided to stay in the area after graduation. In her free time she is a youth leader at her church, enjoys reading, spending time with family and friends, and thinks naps are wonderful.

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 Inquiry Project Team Leaders


Beth Coker - Team Project Lead for Foodology Inquiry Project
2108 Campus Box
Elon, NC 27244
Beth Coker received degrees in Chemical Engineering and Chemistry from North Carolina State University. She has worked in university research settings and in the pharmaceutical and manufacturing industries. After deciding that she wanted encourage the next generation of scientists, Beth obtained her N.C. teaching certification and taught science at Western Alamance Middle School. She has also taught vocational skills to disabled youth and summer science camps. Beth enjoys spending time with her husband and two sons, sustainable living, and reading.

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Student Mentors

Connor Cummings - College Access Team Mentor; Undeclared Major at Elon University (Class of 2016)
West Chester, PA
Connor is a senior at Elon University, where he is a member of the Business Fellows program. He plans to major in Marketing and History. Connor enjoys traveling, playing tennis, sports in general, watching movies, camping and hanging with friends. Connor hopes to get involved in many activities at Elon including, business competitions, the student TV station, intramurals, and community service.
Liam Davitt - College Access Team Mentor; Marketing Major at Elon University (Class of 2016)
Kinston, NC
Liam is a senior at Elon who is majoring in marketing with a minor in biology. His goal is to work for an advertising agency or peruse entrepreneurial ventures. In his free time he loves to explore new music and play the guitar. He is passionate about the outdoors and enjoy activities like rock climbing, hiking, and cycling. Liam is also a car enthusiast and enjoys telling other people useless trivial car facts. Most of all he enjoys meeting new people and learning more about them
Angie Edwards - College Access Team Mentor; Elementary Education Major at Elon University (Class of 2016)
Chapel Hill, NC
Angie is a senior in Elon's Teaching Fellows program who is also minoring in Poverty and Social Justice Studies. When not mentoring and coaching scholars (or doing her own homework) she is active in the on-campus Presbyterian Student Fellowship, member of the service Fraternity APO,  and a program coordinator for the Alternative Breaks. Angie studied abroad in Costa Rica for a semester and loved every minute of it, but she is happy to be back home at Elon where she enjoys reading, listening to music, and singing in the shower.

Jill Epperson -- College Access Team Mentor

Jill is a sophomore at Elon and she is a member of the Elon Academy Epsilon class. She is majoring in strategic communications and political science with a minor in leadership studies.  She is involved with many organizations on campus that focus of service and building a community and this coming year she will be a RA. In her free time she likes to watch Netflix and read BuzzFeed articles and among many other things she enjoys meeting new people and spending time with her friends and family.

Waverly Ann Jackson - College Access Team Mentor; Elementary and Special Education Major at Elon University (Class of 2016)
Richmond, VA
Waverly Ann is a senior majoring in Elementary and Special Education and minoring in Sociology. She plans on getting her Masters of Education and her lifelong dream is to be a first grade teacher. On campus, she is a small group leader for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, part of the Families Committee for Elonthon, and was an Orientation Leader for incoming first year students. In her free time she loves crafting, singing, and doing service projects in both the local area and abroad when she has the opportunity. 
Anna Lewis - College Access Team Mentor; Physics Major at Elon University (Class of 2016)
Holly Springs, NC

Anna is majoring in Physics with minors in Astronomy and Religious Studies. While at Elon, Anna has been a part of the Gospel Choir, SMART program, and is an ambassador for the Alumni Association. In her free time, Anna enjoys reading, watching Downton Abbey and spending time with family and friends.

Aaron Marks - Academic Coach Co-Cordinator

Aaron, a Maynard National Teaching Fellow and third year student at Elon University, majors in Education with a concentration in History and plans on a career in education.

Aaron exemplifies the philosophy of working hard and playing hard. When not serving as a mentor or co-coordinator for Elon Academy, and performing research with members of the faculty, and studying (he is a member of History International Honor Society), Aaron is an active member, Executive officer, and founding father of Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity. Actively participant in intramural sports – you name he will play it if it involves a ball (or, at least give it a try).  Last Spring, Aaron spent the term in London, England.

During the summer, Aaron has served as a baseball and fast pitch softball coach for various teams, including a 14U Little League All-Star Fast Pitch Softball Team, 16U baseball team, and a 23U Fast Pitch Softball Team that participated in the 2014 Women’s Major Softball National Championship.  Aaron is from Fairfield, Connecticut, with family living all over the United States (East Coast, West Coast, and places in between) and graduated from Fairfield Warde High School where he played baseball.

Oscar Miranda - College Access Team Mentor; Business Management Major at Elon University (Class of 2017)

My name is Oscar Miranda and I’m a first-year student here are Elon!  I am technically a Business Management Major, but I am certain my major will change because I’m not into business that much.  I am the Treasurer of the Latin American Student Organization (LASO), Watson & Odyssey Scholar and am a winner of the Golden Door Scholarship.  I am an Alpha Phi Omega Service Fraternity Brother and apart of S.M.A.R.T. Mentors, where I hope to become a Mentor my sophomore year!

I can be a pretty fun wild guy, but I can also be calm and when it gets time to get serious, it happens.  I love music! Some of my favorite bands include Three Days Grace, Linkin Park and Green Day and I listen to a lot of Rap and Hip-Hop.  I like to be outside especially if it is in a very forest-y type place.  My favorite colors are yellow and green.  I love all types of food as long as it includes lots of meat! I also love desserts too, ice cream, cake, cupcakes you name it! I love to hang out with my friends and am in in huge favor of trying new things! I hope to travel the world some day! :)         

I am soo excited to be apart of Elon Academy because I want to help encourage high school students that they too can get into college.  I can relate so much with the high school students that we will be working with and I hope I can help them and be that Mentor figure, I would have wanted someone to be for me throughout high school.  I’ve heard great things about Elon Academy and I just can’t wait to work with this program this summer. I want to see students succeed and help them have better lives with the help of a college education.

Jordan McRae -- College Access Team Mentor

I'm Jordon McRae, a First-year Teaching Fellow from Ambler, Pennsylvania. I am currently majoring in Elementary Education, but would love to eventually be able to teach K-12 in the future. My favorite subjects in high school were English and History. I also serve as Resident Assistant in Smith Dormitory at Elon. I'm a huge soccer and basketball fan, and love to play both, as well as workout daily. I'm also a huge fan of the soccer club Arsenal, and follow them passionately. I love to listen to almost all types of music, although Rap&Hip-hop are my favorites. I love almost all types of foods although candy is my weakness. I enjoy reading, hanging with friends, and movie watching in my free time. I'm extremely excited to begin work as a CAT Mentor in the fall!

Melanie Mourt - Senior College Access Team Mentor; Public Health Studies and Psychology Majors at Elon University (Class of 2016)

Melanie is a senior at Elon, double majoring in Public Health Studies and Psychology. In addition to Elon Academy she is also a Group Exercise Instructor for Campus Recreation and Vice President of Programs/Philanthropy for Alpha Xi Delta sorority on campus. Melanie loves travelling, dancing, eating nachos, being sassy, and meeting new people.
Brianna Pepperman - Senior CAT Mentor, Academic Coach Co-Coordinator; Public Heath and Human Services (Class of 2016)
Hershey, PA
Bri is a senior at Elon University. She is currently double majoring in Public Health and Human Services with a minor in Biology. Originally from Hershey, PA Bri was actively involved dance and theatre during high school. While at Elon though she has been involved with Young Life, ELONTHON's Moral and Family committees, and her sorority Tri Delta. She is also an Elon Engagement Scholar. Bri spent last spring break traveling to Jamaica with Mr. Pickett on a Elon Volunteers' service trip and will be spending Winter Term this year studying film in Australia and New Zealand. Brianna also works as a Academic Coach with Elon Academy and works at home at as a Nursing Assistant. When Bri is not insanely busy she loves napping, binge watching Netflix, making crafts off Pinterest, and baking cookies.
Emma Wolf - Senior College Access Team Mentor; Human Services Spanish Language Majors at Elon University (Class of 2016)

Richmond, VA

Emma is a senior at Elon University, majoring in Human Services and Spanish Language. In addition to working for Elon Academy, she is the Research Assistant to Dr. Ketcham, the director of Pre-Health at Elon University. On campus, she enjoys being a part of running club, Young Life, Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, small group, and the Elonthon Operations Committee. In rare moments of free time, she likes to curl up with a good book, spend time with friends, watch New Girl, and take naps. Emma gets the hiccups when she eats spicy food.

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Alamance-Burlington School System

Julia Johns, Assistant Principal
Hugh H. Cummings High School
2200 N. Mebane Street
Burlington, NC 27217
Kelly Coble, Math Teacher
Southern Alamance High School
631 Southern High School Road
Graham, NC 27253
Ako Barnes, Assistant Principal
Eastern Alamance High School
4040 Mebane Rogers Road
Mebane, NC 27302
Carole Workman, Academic Coach
Walter M. Williams High School
1307 S Church Street
Burlington, NC 27215
Holly Shepherd, School Counselor
River Mill Academy
1242 S. Main St
Graham, NC 27253
Dave Nebrig, Assistant Principal
Western Alamance High School
1731 North Hwy 87
Elon, North Carolina 27244
Beth Taylor, School Counselor
Graham High School
903 Trollinger Road
Graham, NC 27253

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